Therapy Tip: Autism and Feeding

Jennifer Posts:

DEAR ERI COMMUNITY: Tip for OT’s working on feeding:
I recently attended a conference on Autism and an amazing OT & DO, Paula Aquilla was one of the presenters. She shared many techniques she has tried, but one that has really worked for me is a feeding game. You begin by making a die with words such as lick, kiss, smell, touch, look, etc. We have a pile of cards with pictures of foods we are exploring that day; we used the PEC images with the word underneath. We take turns rolling the die and picking a card from the top of the pile. We both follow the directions on the die matched with our card and we maintain a very non threatening environment. This patient has begun trying food at home. I have my fingers crossed but so far this has worked for us!

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Evidence Based Approach to Feeding Fragile Infants

ERI Faculty, Erin Ross publishes Paper:

[caption id="attachment_449" align="alignright" width="150" caption="Erin Sundseth Ross"][/caption]

Erin Ross, a speech language pathologist and Education Resources, Inc. faculty recently co-authored a paper describing her successful oral feeding of preterm and other ill and fragile infants, based on the SOFFI (“Supporting Oral Feeding in Fragile Infants”) method. This method utilizes sensitive, ongoing assessment of an infant’s physiology and behavior, requires knowledgeable decisions that support immediate and long-term enjoyment of food, and competent skill in feeding. Therapists, nurses and parents can use the SOFFI method to increase the likelihood of feeding success in the population of infants at risk for feeding problems that emerge in infancy and extend into the preschool years. It stresses the quality of the feeding rather than the quantity, so that feeding skills develop pleasurably and at the infant’s own pace. Once physiologic organization and behavioral skills are established, an affinity for feeding and the ingestion of sufficient quantity occur naturally.

She teaches this highly successful method in her course: Feeding the Most Fragile: From NICU to Early Intervention

Clinicians: Please share your experiences using the SOFFI approach

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Help: Challenging EI Patient

Linda Posts:

DEAR ERI COMMUNITY:I am an experienced OT (37 years) working in Early Childhood Intervention working in the home. Our program really wants us to use what is in the home and in the child’s natural environment. I have a 23 month old child who is in Spanish speaking family (so I work through an interpreter). He is extremely shy (fearful of all change)and will not interact with me at all. The way I treat is giving the mother ideas and then she tries them with him. The interpreter is an ECI Early Intervention Specialist who can also interact with the child and get him to do some of the things I suggest. He did not walk until 19 months. He never tolerated tummy time and even after he crawled he would not get on the floor to look for a toy under the bed, etc. He is an over responsive sensory avoider, extremely posturally insecure, moderate hearing loss, balance and motor planning are very poor. We have made lots of improvements and he will now get on the floor and look for a toy that rolls under furniture, get on a jumping horse and bounce, sit on a donut gym ball and play with toys, runs in the house but not the yard or playground, climbs on and off furniture, allows Mom and Dad to bounce him on their knees as long as it is not too aggressive and kicks a ball. I have left a few things in the home to work with (Rody Jumping Horse and Donut Ball). I am needing some new ideas in the challenging case.

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Continuing Education Units (CEU's) for Dummies

Are you clear on what is the definition of a CEU (“continuing education unit”) vs. what is a continuing education hour? In most states, a CEU is a tenth of an hour. Thus, a one hour course is equivalent to 0.1 CEU. In a two day course, which is typically 12-14 hours long, the CEUs translate to 1.2 or 1.4 CEUs. 

Some state physical therapy boards and physical therapy associations, such as in Florida and NY calculate an hour as 50 minutes. 

No, this is not the new math! But you do get more bang for your buck! 

In this case, the best way to calculate how many continuing education hours a course provides is to add up the hours, multiply by 60 (to get the total minutes) and then divide by 50. But not to worry…we at Education Resources, Inc. will do this for you and this information will be on each brochure that you download from our website. 

Education Resources is also an approved ASHA Approved CEU provider, and ASHA calls an hour of time 1 CEU. Hooray, ASHA! 

Ready to learn more? Check out Education Resources CEU page here for more detailed explanations.

As always, feel free to call us or comment with your specific CEU questions: 508-359-6533.

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Clinical Rotations? Specialization?

Rick Posts

DEAR ERI COMMUNITY: I am in an acute setting for a large university hospital in the midwest. Currently our management staff prefers we rotate on an average of 4 month schedule around the hospital, with all Level 1 Trauma areas such as Cardiac, Neuro, Ortho/trauma, Oncology, Renal, Transplant, Burn, and ICU. Are there any other hospitals out there that work in a similar function? I have been looking at other area hospitals and they seem to keep their therapists in areas of preference rather than a rotation that allows little room for specialization. Thanks for your input.

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