I just finished “Handwriting Success”, the newest handout pack sold by Your Therapy Source . And it is on sale for the next week, until 3/13/23! After years of working with struggling writers, frustrated parents, and overwhelmed teachers, it was time to make something they can use. It pulls together all of the practical strategies I…… Continue reading My New Handout Pack on Handwriting is ON SALE!!
Are You Potty Training TOO LATE?
There is a simple answer: you train when you train, and not a minute before that. But you can train too late, and there are hidden consequences that should no longer remain hidden. In the current tide of emotions on social media, there is plenty of mom-shaming and blaming going around. Just stop all of…… Continue reading Are You Potty Training TOO LATE?
Can Adaptive Equipment Be Dangerous to a Child?
That was a trick question: of course it can. The wrong adaptive equipment can create hazards as well as bad habits that are hard to break. And it happens all the time now, as parents and patients decide that they know exactly what is needed. It also happens when they aren’t provided with access to…… Continue reading Can Adaptive Equipment Be Dangerous to a Child?
Is Independent Walking in the Classroom Overrated?
The “Holy Grail” for most parents of physically disabled kids is their child being able to walk around independently. This includes walking while in school. Most schools are not fully ADA accessible, making walking an easier choice many times. The oldest schools and the poorest districts frequently have the biggest problems and the least access…… Continue reading Is Independent Walking in the Classroom Overrated?
Why That Sippy Cup Could Damage Your Child’s Teeth (Hint: its not what you think!)
No, the cup isn’t deforming the positioning of their teeth. But that is a good guess. Most therapists know that the prolonged use of these covered cups slow down learning the mouth and jaw control needed to drink from an open cup. So that is a terrific reason to ditch the Sippy cup as soon…… Continue reading Why That Sippy Cup Could Damage Your Child’s Teeth (Hint: its not what you think!)
Need to Pick a High Chair or do Tummy Time with Special Needs Infants? I Got You!
I just wrote a new set of handouts for Your Therapy Source. This time they are about going BEYOND Tummy Time, picking high chairs, booster seats, and getting baby wearing right when your child has special needs. These are great for therapists in Early Intervention, but parents can also buy them on the…… Continue reading Need to Pick a High Chair or do Tummy Time with Special Needs Infants? I Got You!
The Secret Weapon To Get Your Autistic Child Sleeping Better
You will need to address your own sleep skills. This is more than the classic “Put your mask on before trying to place a mask over your child’s mouth” on an airplane. Raising a child with autism is a lot of work. A lot of love, but a lot of time and effort. Nothing is…… Continue reading The Secret Weapon To Get Your Autistic Child Sleeping Better
Why Hydration is Your Superpower When Potty Training an Autistic Child
Hydration…a fancy name for drinking enough water. It could be the key to successfully potty training an autistic child. Why? Because if nothing much is going in, or nothing healthy is going in, nothing good will come out. A child who has a history of struggling to nurse or feed from a bottle often turns…… Continue reading Why Hydration is Your Superpower When Potty Training an Autistic Child
Toothbrushing Tools For Autism That Work!
Families ask me to come to their homes and teach their autistic kid how to correctly brush and floss their teeth. As an occupational therapist, I know good tools can do half of my work for me (Shush: don’t tell anybody that it isn’t always my many years of training and experience that make the…… Continue reading Toothbrushing Tools For Autism That Work!
A Simple Strategy to Manage an Autistic Child’s Fear of Practicing New Skills
Novelty can be very difficult for kids with autism. Very. Difficult. Learning a new skill is only one type of novelty in the life of an autistic child. But it can go badly, and without much warning. The meltdown from being asked to switch things up can be substantial. Mostly out of proportion to…… Continue reading A Simple Strategy to Manage an Autistic Child’s Fear of Practicing New Skills
Why Letting Your Child Snack All Day Can Damage Their Sleep Quality
I wanted to make the title stronger, more click-able. But in the end, I am not writing this blog to grab views. I am writing it to help people support children’s health. So I couldn’t use words like “destroy” or “torpedo”. But I wanted to. Because something as simple as snacking every hour or so…… Continue reading Why Letting Your Child Snack All Day Can Damage Their Sleep Quality
How To Decide Between “Boot Camp” and Gradual Potty Training
Whether or not you are training a special needs child or a neurotypical child, you will have to think about exactly which methods you will be using. The two general categories for training strategies are the “boot camp”, in which the child spends days living near the potty, focusing on toileting, and the gradual…… Continue reading How To Decide Between “Boot Camp” and Gradual Potty Training
How to Handle Your Family’s Reactions to Your Gifted Kid’s Comments
We already know that it is common for a gifted child to challenge their teacher’s patience Why Gifted Children Aren’t Their Teacher’s Favorite Students…. . But what about their extended family? Do they take everything that comes out of a gifted child’s mouth in stride? Nope. The same reasons that teachers find gifted students less-than-adorable…… Continue reading How to Handle Your Family’s Reactions to Your Gifted Kid’s Comments
How to Pick The Best Toilet Paper For Potty Training
Before I wrote my first book, “The Practical Guide To Toilet Training Your Child With Low Muscle Tone”, I took out every book on potty training my regional library system would share with me. While I did determine that the best book for neurotypical kids was “Oh Crap Potty Training”, I didn’t see a lot mentioned…… Continue reading How to Pick The Best Toilet Paper For Potty Training
Why Your Kid With hEDS Doesn’t Seem to Know They Need the Potty… Right Now!
“Daddy….I gotta go. Right NOWWWW!” No parent wants to hear this coming from the back seat of their car while driving down a freeway or on a rural road. But it happens. And it can happen to older kids with hypermobile Ehlers Danlos syndrome (hEDS), well past early childhood. It can happen to…… Continue reading Why Your Kid With hEDS Doesn’t Seem to Know They Need the Potty… Right Now!
Finally… A Desk Chair For Your Hypermobile Kid, And it Has a Footrest!
The SitRite chair might be for you. After sending parents to the Stokke website for years, it became clear that this chair wasn’t “all that” for every kid. No armrests, a really hard seat, and once a child pushed away from the table or desk, they needed an adult to help them get closer…… Continue reading Finally… A Desk Chair For Your Hypermobile Kid, And it Has a Footrest!
Why Teaching Dressing Skills is Essential to Potty Train Autistic Kids
Toilet training for kids with ASD is complex, and it can take a while. But while you are working on developing communication skills and increasing sensory tolerance, don’t forget to work on clothing management. WHY? Autistic children tend to have difficulty quickly and accurately sensing urgency. Unless you are glued to their side, and…… Continue reading Why Teaching Dressing Skills is Essential to Potty Train Autistic Kids
How To Help Your Gifted Child Handle Frustration
Does your gifted child explode over things that seem minor? Will your child collapse if they get one wrong answer? Does it seem that perfectionism and self-criticism rule their day? Well, none of this is unusual for gifted people. Gifted kids aren’t always happy little geniuses, proofing theorems and inventing new ways to save humanity.…… Continue reading How To Help Your Gifted Child Handle Frustration
Try This Simple Strategy When Your Child Refuses To Use The Toilet
I get a few calls every year from parents who have a neurotypical child between 4 and 5 that has said, very clearly, in words, that they refuse to use the toilet. Often, it is pooping in the potty, not peeing. Hesitancy is one thing. Adamant refusal in words, clear words, is another thing. The…… Continue reading Try This Simple Strategy When Your Child Refuses To Use The Toilet
Puberty and the Hypermobile Child
Puberty. Yup, it happens. Earlier than most adults expect, too. The earliest stages of puberty begin around age 9 for girls and 10 or 11 for boys. Hormone activity is changing, and with it can come some changes in hypermobility. For boys, increased testosterone can increase muscle bulk around joints, making them a bit more…… Continue reading Puberty and the Hypermobile Child