ILOTA Communique December 2017 Communique | Page 19

Sensory Intervention , continued from Page 18
October / November / December • Issue 4 • 2017

Sensory Intervention , continued from Page 18

in the context of emotional distress . This provided me with another opportunity to educate other professionals about the importance of considering the interplay between emotional and physical experiences and their impact on function .
These two cases were significant in that the intervention was focused on actively collaborating with the client to increase awareness and acceptance of internal states ( sensory , thoughts , feelings ) in the service of engagement in self-identified values . We worked together to develop interventions that were a combination of sensory strategies and ACT based approaches to increase behavioral choices . Helping these clients make a link to their values related to relationships , a common ACT approach , resulted in heightened interest and receptivity to address sensory sensitivities . ACT helped my clients get to “ why ” paying attention to sensory experience can be a way to identify workable strategies to minimize impact of sensory inputs and responses to feelings like anxiety and fear . From an ACT perspective ,
a life experience , like sensitivity to sensory input , cannot be understood separate from the context in which it occurs . If a client relates to their sensory experience like it is an enemy to be controlled or avoided their stress response is likely to be very different than if they regard the sensation as an unpleasant but necessary part of doing the things they most want to do .
The outcome of integrating ACT and the Sensory Profile with these young clients was a shift or reframing of their experience of avoiding sensory discomfort and emotional distress to noticing and identifying workable strategies to more fully participate in meaningful activities .
About the Author
Stephanie McCammon is a Senior Occupational Therapist currently working at Rush University Medical Center in Chicago . She has 18 years of experience in mental health , primarily with children and adolescents in inpatient psychiatric units .

Clinical Spotlight

Hand Therapy

Hand and upper extremity rehabilitation as an occupational therapist allows me to use science and creativity on a daily basis . The hand allows us to interact with our world like no other part of the body ! Clients of all backgrounds come to OT looking for relief of pain , increased motion , strength and most importantly a way to return to meaningful occupations . Whether it ’ s a teenager returning to sports , an adult returning to work or an older adult returning to daily routines and favorite past times , I can tailor my treatments to make a difference in people ’ s lives . Splinting , manual techniques , therapeutic activities , a listening ear , and occasional help from physical agent modalities are all tools in my toolbox . Depending on the individual ’ s needs and personal goals , I use these tools in a variety of ways to
Sabrina Murino MS OTR / L , CHT
best treat my clients . Therefore , each day is different and challenging . When you sit across from a person 2 to 3 times a week for about an hour each visit , often holding his or her hand , it is amazing the connection you can make . I look forward to each day I work , knowing I will make a difference in people ’ s day and ultimately their life .
About the Author Sabrina Murino is an occupational therapist at Hinsdale Orthopedics .
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