Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Therapy Update

Ruby has officially entered the phase of NOT liking therapy. She does great with me or Lehr, but when the Babies Can't Wait physical therapist comes, she has started crying close to the whole time. Not fun. Especially for Mommy, who knows that Ruby is not a fussy baby at all, and she really doesn't have 'fits' outside of the therapist's time.

The main focus in therapy right now is encouraging Ruby to bear weight on her straightened arms, like in an up-dog position. She has been up at 90-degrees on tummy time for months, but only on her elbows. And she often shifts her weight to use one straightened arm, but she rests on her elbow with the other arm. This will not help her crawl or cruise, so we are working on it. But she doesn't love it, nor does it come naturally, so much much much is to be done.

The specific exercises we do daily are:
  • her chest over my lower leg with arms underneath her. (I'm bearing most of her weight on my leg, but it allows her to be in the correct position and get used to it.)
  • side sitting on the balance ball. (I sit her flat on the ball and then shift it to one side, which throws her hips to one side and her body to the other, she then has to lean on the 'other' arm. She does not like this one.)
  • supported sitting on the ground. (We sit Ruby with a couch or other supported surface behind her and she must use her arms to 'catch' herself as she tips forward or to the side. She does ok with this going forward, but still doesn't catch herself to the side.)
  • ball rolling. (This is the most fun and she usually 'gets it' towards the end. I put Ruby on her stomach on the ball and roll it away from me. I roll her until her head is just inches from the ground. The goal is to trigger her protection instinct, as in she should throw her hands out to touch the ground before her head. She does not do this initially, but after I show her a few times, she will do it on her own.)

We also have a fun little arm 'splint' that the therapist left with us. It gets wrapped around one arm and it prevents her from bending at the elbow. We alternate which side it's on so she gets equal opportunity to have to weight bear on straight arm(s). The problem with this is Ruby will just lie flat down (no arms) and just raise her head to play (like a superman position). That girl's crafty!

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