Our Approaches to Therapy
Approaches to therapy are determined on a case by case basis. Our therapists stay informed about new, innovative interventions and technology. OTOL Rx therapists keep it real by selecting therapy activities to specifically support goals that are important to the client and meaningful in their life. Interventions are directed at one or more of the following objectives:
- Achieve maximal skill acquisition/skill rebuilding
- Develop and practice client strategies to more effectively manage skill weaknesses and improve performance of functional, day to day activity challenges
- Introduce environmental restructuring
- Utilize multiple skills at one time to manage real-life situations (skill integration training)
Skill acquisition/skill rebuilding involves controlled, progressive drill work focusing on strengthening and restoring one skill at a time. An example activity is having the client engage in exercises to develop the ability to listen carefully to auditory information in distracting contexts with the purposeful addition of competing background noise and/or visual distractions.
Client management strategies involve learning to work around skill weaknesses and to utilize alternative ways to accomplish a specific behavior. Greater reliance is placed upon more intact areas of the brain, behavioral strengths, breaking a task down step-by-step, and using external and internal cues. “Automatic pilot” behavior is typically bypassed and substituted with more consciously directed behavior. An example of a client management strategy is teaching the client to hold back from responding quickly to a problem-solving situation. Rather, the client learns to write out three possible solutions to a personal situation, evaluate the pros and cons of each possible plan of action, and then select the best choice option.
Environmental restructuring involves adjustments to the client’s physical environment as well as demands placed on the individual by themselves or others. This purposeful restructuring results in the individual being able to function more adaptively even with behavioral weaknesses. An example of environmental restructuring intervention is the placement of a label on the kitchen drawer where knives are kept. The label is utilized to indicate that the drawer is not to be opened due to potential safety issues.
Skill integration training involves practicing two or more skills simultaneously in a less structured, real-world context. An example of this type of intervention is the client learning to cross a busy intersection while attending to the light signal cues, crosswalk borders, and use of safe ambulation techniques and strategies.