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A Pediatric Perspective

The Weighted Vest Debate
September 26, 2014 1:45 PM by Wendy Spoor-Hof
A recent discussion arose in the " Pediatric Occupational Therapists " Facebook group about the usefulness of weighted vests. The writer posted that there are numerous studies showing weighted vests are not an effective intervention in the pediatric population. Read More...
Gift Ideas for Children with Special Needs
November 7, 2013 8:50 AM by Wendy Spoor-Hof
Well it's that time of year again. The holidays are right around the corner. As a Birth-to-Three provider I am often asked if I have any suggestions on what gifts would be appropriate for the children I work with. My first suggestion is to think about Read More...
From Sandles and Shorts to Boots and Coats
October 17, 2013 9:36 AM by Wendy Spoor-Hof
"What good is the warmth of summer, without the cold of winter to give it sweetness." --John Steinbeck It's that time of year once again. The days are getting shorter and the nights colder. You feel that crispness in the air that heralds in the colder Read More...
Some Thoughts on Vestibular Input
July 9, 2013 1:45 PM by Cecilia Cruse
Lately all things vestibular have been showing up in my world. A colleague has been having issues with vertigo (your world shrinks fast when you feel dizzy all of the time!). It reminded me to be thankful that my own system is intact for now despite my Read More...
It's My Turn!
June 21, 2013 11:21 AM by Cecilia Cruse
We all work with children with special needs (and even some typically developing kids) that have trouble with social skills because of the turn taking concept. Every turn is his/her turn and/or there are meltdowns when asked to “wait your turn” etc. Here Read More...
DSM-5 Debut
May 30, 2013 3:37 PM by Cecilia Cruse
Well, it’s like it or not it’s official. The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual ( DSM-5 ) was released earlier this month. This edition has been controversial because of the changes made in the diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorder and what it includes Read More...
Weighted Blankets: What Do We Know?
May 28, 2013 6:12 PM by Cecilia Cruse
As a peds therapist and on staff expert for an equipment company for special needs, I do get asked periodically for more resources on weighted blankets. There have been some well-known published studies on weighted vests including Fertel-Daly et all on Read More...
AOTA Conference Recap Part 2
May 2, 2013 4:23 PM by Cecilia Cruse
I sat in on a great short course for Children and Youth last week at the AOTA conference. Entitled Finding Our Niche in RtI , instructors Joyce Salis, OTD, OTR/L and Janet Bucey, OTR/L did a super job of explaining OT’s role in the RtI process at each Read More...
Eye Gaze Aversion and Autism
March 26, 2013 3:22 PM by Cecilia Cruse
As the good sensory trained therapists that we are, we have long known anecdotally that children with autism often avert eye gaze especially when there is simultaneous input, such as when the child is being given auditory directions and/or is attempting Read More...
Kids are the Best Teachers!
March 24, 2013 3:02 PM by Cecilia Cruse
As a peds OT for over 25 years, I’ve said for a long time now that it’s not what we teach our kids in therapy it’s what they teach us! Here are a few great examples of our ambassadors for special needs: Grace McClelland: Born with a ULD (Upper Limb Difference) Read More...
In Memoriam
March 10, 2013 4:31 PM by Cecilia Cruse
I was saddened to learn recently of the death of an icon in the world of OT. Jane Koomar, PhD, OTR/L, FAOTA passed away peacefully at her home on February 24 th after a long illness. I did not have the privilege of knowing her personally, but she certainly Read More...
SPD Foundation Comments on Adam Lanza’s SPD Diagnosis
February 28, 2013 2:56 PM by Cecilia Cruse
I just received this update from the SPD Foundation regarding the Newtown, CT murders and the young man identified as the shooter Adam Lanza. (See my December blog: Autism Speaks Out About Newtown Tragedy ). PBS's Frontline has released a riveting documentary Read More...
Sensory Strategies for At Risk Youth
January 24, 2013 12:50 PM by Cecilia Cruse
I recently had a conversation with a special education coordinator who oversees a large district. Part of her job duties include working with at risk students that have been removed from their home school and placed in a disciplinary education center. Read More...
Top 5 Blog Posts for 2012
December 29, 2012 11:08 AM by Cecilia Cruse
As my year as your peds blogger comes to a close, I thought I would give you a rundown of the top 5 most popular posts. 5. Weighing in at the fifth spot was the final update on the DSM-5 due out next May: SPD Excluded from DSM-5 . 4. The AJOT published Read More...
More Updates on DSM-5
December 16, 2012 1:33 PM by Cecilia Cruse
In addition to the exclusion of the SPD diagnosis which I blogged about last week , there are more changes to the upcoming DSM-5 which recently received final revision and approval. Most notable are the sweeping changes to the autism diagnosis. To summarize Read More...


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