Recent happenings: IEP, iLs, the dental visit, diet and the dog

So much has been happening since the last post in September.  Joshua’s school team and I met for an IEP on November 2nd and I was grateful to be able to update this new treatment team for him as to how his treatment is going outside of school.  We met for 2.5 hours, most of that with Joshua’s kindergarten teacher, Mr. Casey, with Kari, the OT and Tricia, the Speech Therapist contributing.  It was so valuable for me, and hopefully, it was the same for them.  Mr. Casey is so experienced working with autistic kids and quite supportive, offering to meet at the Parent Teacher Conference time to help work on behavioral interventions for Josh at home.  He’s a former ABA specialist and gave me some tips to help both at home and when we are at church, to help Joshua learn socially appropriate behavior and take care of his needs at the same time.

Joshua and Mr. Casey

Josh also started with the iLS program on Friday, November 4th, the day we got the system to work at home.  I am so excited for this opportunity and Josh seems to be able to tolerate a half hour at a time with the headphones on, although he does cry at my telling him that it’s time to use it.  There are exercises to do with it and lets just say, we are making progress.  As his therapist says, he is so delayed in many of these areas, we are going to have to do one and take a break, letting him play before doing another.  For example, one exercise has him laying flat on the floor and lifting his head to look at his toes, picking up one foot at a time, just off the floor.  He doesn’t do anything but lay on the floor and I lift his head trying to get him to partake in the exercise, just a little.  A few times he does lift his head by him self, but it’s few and far between.  An easier exercise involves sitting on the floor with his legs in a “V” and rolling a ball back and forth to me.  The biggest struggle with this one is simply cooperation as sometimes he’d rather just lay on the floor.  Another involves him sitting on a balance board and he is getting better with that.  On a positive note, he has lots of room for improvement!  I am truly grateful for this opportunity to have him be a part of this study and can’t wait to see how he will benefit from it.

Joshua getting set to do his iLs exercises

"Reading" the exercises while balancing on the Balancing Board

This last week, Josh had a dentist appointment back at the Center for Pediatric Dentistry associated with the UW Dentistry School  Josh was last there in January (I had not remembered to take him this past summer for a recall.).  He did so great!  Last time, he cried the whole time as I had to hold him on my lap and flip him backwards into the dentist’s lap, while squeezing him.  He responded well to the squeezing by complying and his body was relaxed, but he cried the entire exam.  This time, he explored the room and sat up on the chair.  The dental assistant got Thomas the Train on Netflix for him to watch above the chair on the ceiling and gave him sunglasses.  Despite not really putting the spotlight on, he was still sensitive to the light.  The dentist was able to work in his mouth while counting to “12”, the number Joshua counts to when we are brushing at home.  Josh was compliant the entire time and even was able to do the fluoride treatment without a complaint!  It was awesome!  The dental team was so encouraging regarding how we work at home with him as some parents really have a struggle brushing their disabled child’s teeth and often don’t persist.  I have been blessed so much by the people God has put in my life to give me tips on what would help with him, especially a dental assistant at our old dentist’s office where Josh had gone for his “Not so happy, Happy Visit”.  The key is counting while brushing fast.  Having a set number as a goal for when the brushing will stop really has helped us, and hopefully, just that little tidbit, will help others as well.  I have also started by giving Josh control with brushing his teeth.  “First Joshie’s turn, and then Mommy’s turn.”  It seems to work so we are going with it!

Lastly, we are dog sitting Ruby again.  We were having “the Jones’ ” for having a dog but want to really be able to not only be sure we can afford one, but also for Josh to be more comfortable.  Paula was so willing to loan us Ruby for 10 days.  Joshua is now to the point that he has cautiously petted Ruby on the head and back, even playing with her tail.  He is also quite interested in being sure she has enough water, trying to fill her water dish all by himself!  Ruby is so good with Josh and such a sweet dog.    We are so grateful for Paula, and the girls being willing to let us borrow her.  And, Mr. Bubbles, Ava’s cat, is quite willing to have a break from Ruby for a while, too!

Joshua getting brave with Ruby, petting her tail end

It’s so neat to be able to see how far Joshua has come.  It gives me encouragement as to having hope that he will continue to improve.  We are also, currently, trying him on rice, which is not a part of the GAPS diet.  He has been looking at his hands more, and having loose stool, so we may need to abort this effort if it doesn’t improve.  Rice, may add to the bad yeast he had a history with, so perhaps we will see if adding a bit more carnitine will help, with removing any additional toxins.  His body is producing it now, but on the scale, he was on the low end of normal.  We so want him to be able to enjoy some of the treats I can make with the rice flour and it’s so darn cute having him up on the counter when I bake, willing to sample, pointing and saying “There!”  We let him sample a rice flour brownie and he was all over that!  I’ve also made some rice flour sugar cookies.  We have to be sure to keep these kind of treats to a minimum, as he already likes to invade the honey jug, pouring himself a smackeral with exceptional precision!  There’s currently a Thomas the Train spoon in the bottom of the jug, which will stay there until it is empty.  Since it’s a quart, it will be a while.

Josh loves to help at the counter with preparing food


This entry was posted on Monday, November 14th, 2011 at 3:50 am and is filed under Autism Diet, Autism Resources, Autism Treatment, General Autism Info, Sensory Integration Disorder. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.


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