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Down syndrome and behavior problems

Last post 03-11-2011, 11:27 PM by Anita Barnett. 1 replies.
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  •  02-12-2011, 12:36 AM

    Down syndrome and behavior problems

    i am new in the area of pediatric OT. Currently I am working in an orphanage for children with special needs under 6 years. In our centre we have  a 5 year old boy diagnosed with Downs. Also he has major behavior issues specially during transiting from one activity to another which includes shouting, biting own hand, banging head and kicking. Sometimes for no apparent reasons he will hit other children. I have tried different strategies at different times (using timer, counting together, picture cards, talking, rewards, time out and time in, pressure vest) which may work on one day but not another.  his undesirable behavior continues to be a problem through out the day with moments of co- operation at times. One of the main challenge is that due to funding reasons we have to ask help from volunteers and this is great but also the issue of inconsistent ways of dealing with his behavior is something of a problem. He does seem to enjoy individual attention and works better on one on one with me but in a group setting can be very disruptive. I am beginning to wonder what more can i offer this child who can be extremly loving at times giving us kisses and hugs yet can kick, hit others and cause self injuries. 

    Any help/advice from your expereince will be much appreciated. 

  •  03-11-2011, 11:27 PM

    Re: Down syndrome and behavior problems

    Have had great success with using the Wilbarger Therapeutic Brushing approach, combined w/ joint compressions.  I've found that positioning the child in a bean bag chair, and gradually introducing the brushing method has done wonders, as many of his behaviors sound like sensory-seeking.  You may need to keep it short and simple initially, then increase the length of the treatment as he recognizes it as a good thing.  Also--important to do it every 2 hours during waking hours--but brushes are cheap, and this is easy to teach support staff.

    Good luck!