Wednesday, 25 February 2015

Books and Music Section of our Store.

It's been a few days since posting and even longer since adding a post about our online store. We have lots more items to add and many posts on individual items. In the meantime, let's introduce you to another section of the store. 

Our next category is our Books and Music section. We do have more books in stock, but the few added so far are a wonderful start. Many books are new and unread, some books are second hand. Books are easy to package and ship anywhere. Shipping costs obviously do apply over and above the price listed.

As you will see, we also have a few signed copies in stock. 

Do take a look at our Books and Music section of our store and send us your comments. We'd love to hear what you would need to help your shopping experience be a lot more successful and enjoyable.

What kind of books do you enjoy to read? Are there any books your are looking to purchase? 

Do you enjoy music? We'd love to hear your thoughts and needs so do post your comment on the bottom of this post.



Wednesday, 18 February 2015

Equipment to Evaluate Hand Function

A few of our readers have asked about equipment used in occupational therapy. Actually, we use lots of equipment. Some equipment is used in evaluation. Some equipment is used in treatment. Some equipment is used to adapt an activity or the environment.

I am sure there are catalogs and books on the topic. It's not quite as simple as well, "we use a stethoscope to hear heart beat or the lungs, we use a pressure cuff to test blood pressure, we use a treatment table for the patient to lie down on". Of course, here I am describing some equipment used by nurses or doctors.

In occupational therapy we have a lot of equipment as we assist our patients or clients to function to the optimum in all areas of their daily life.

So let us introduce you to two important pieces of equipment.

The first item is called a dynamometer. I apologize in advance as I was not successful finding a royalty free image. Those interested in what it looks like can click on this link and take a look on Amazon.com. It comes in a few sizes and is used to evaluate and monitor the grip strength of a person. This is an important piece of equipment in the evaluation section of any hand clinic or work rehabilitation unit.

There are norms and standards depending on age of the patient and whether the patient is male or female. No it is not being sexist it is a purely practical score due to the size of muscles and their muscle strength. 

          The image above is found in Wiki Commons and is in the public domain.

The item in the above image is called a goniometer. There are several sizes and a few different styles of this piece  of equipment. A goniometer is used to test range of motion at a joint. Since joints differ in size depending on whether one tests a persons hip or fingers or another joint, there are different sizes to measure the range of motion. 

The goniometer is used by physiotherapists too. 

An occupational therapist needs to know the normal functioning of the body which means the muscles, joints, nerves and more. There are different types of joints in the human body and the specific muscles that enable each joint to bend or straighten, open or close may require strengthening for different reasons. 

This post outlines two pieces of equipment found in physical rehabilitation and work rehabilitation of an occupational therapy clinic, department, practice or centre. 

Have you heard of other equipment used by occupational therapists? Do you have a specific interest or question? Please post your question at the bottom, we'd love to hear from you.

This post is prepared for you by Shoshanah Shear
Occupational Therapist, Healing Facilitator
Certified Infant Massage Instructor
Certified Kallah Teacher
Artist, Photographer and Author

Monday, 16 February 2015

Driving Safely

A few days ago I read of a situation of a driver driving over his toddler. This situation was outlined to me when I did an advanced drivers test some years ago. The traffic officer who outlined the situation was very strong about the fact that this can be prevented. How? That is a habit that ALL drivers need to get used to. 

The habit is of course part of the K2 style of driving which is to drive defensively and sensibly.

In the advanced drivers course we were taught that when you are about to get into your car, walk around the car the long way. As you do so, check for anything that might be interfering with the path of your car. It could be a rubbish bin, it could be an item you have forgotten to put into your car, it could be shoes or a pet or a child. Check your tyres to make sure they are still in fit condition to be driving. Check your exhaust to make sure it is still in it's correct position. Check your lights. Check your doors, the angle of your wing mirrors, in short have a very good look at everything around, next to and under your car, both the car itself and other items.

If there is anything of concern, move it away before you get into the car or take the necessary steps to rectify whatever the problem is.

If you are already driving and are coming home and about to come into your driveway, what are some ideas you can do to make sure your driveway is clear? 

Firstly, you need to know your area very well. If it is safe to park your car, get out and check your drive way, then do so. If safety is an issue, you can either call home prior to starting out on your trip and notify those at home that you are due home in 10 minutes, 20 minutes or however long it might take and to make sure the driveway is clear and all pets and children are indoors.

If you have a hands free option to call, you can call as you get a few blocks away and make sure the entrance way is clear to come in. 

Better than this, if you have an area for pets and children to play that is safely away from the driveway and preferably with a wall or gate or some barrier, make it a habit that small children, pets etc are not permitted in the line of traffic. Just like they should not be permitted on the road on their own. 

I hope this post helps to remind you of a few safety tips to make a habit if you are a driver. Remember, being in a hurry is never an excuse. It takes a few extra seconds or a minute or so to make sure nothing is in the way of your driving. Those extra seconds or minutes can be the difference between your loved one or you being in hospital or worse. 

The Rambam teaches us that prevention is better than cure. The best way to prevent accidents is to develop healthy habits that will prevent incidents of this nature from occurring. To give yourself some additional protection, I would add to put a coin in a Tzeddakah box before you set off to drive or before your Tefillah each day. As you give the Tzeddakah, ask Hashem to guide and protect you and keep you and your loved ones safe. 

Do you have any other ideas that can help to prevent an accident or injury? Would you like a talk or presentation on the topic? If so, please post your comments below or send them via my website.

This post is prepared for you by 

Occupational Therapist, Healing Facilitator
Certified Infant Massage Instructor
Certified Kallah Teacher
Artist, Photographer and Author

Sunday, 15 February 2015

Finding Out If a Therapist Is Suitable For You

When working privately, there are many times that potential clients call to inquire as to whether the therapist has the skills needed to treat their child or themselves or another family member. Asking an occupational therapist whether they have experience working with children as opposed to adults or hand therapy versus neuro-therapy or sensory modulation versus grief therapy are perfectly legitimate questions and should take only a minute. If the therapist has the skills and experience to work with you or your family member then suitable questions would be, what is the procedure for treatment, what are your hours and what are your rates. All of this should also take only a few minutes.

When a parent or potential client begins to expect additional time to explain past therapies or to ask for advice, this begins to enter into information that is appropriate for the history that is gained in the interview. The interview, evaluations, advice, guidance, ideas for course of treatment all fall into the consultation and should be paid for in full according to the therapists rates.

After having many situations of potential clients expecting free advice or information followed either by booking a session and then cancelling or not booking as now they have all the information they require, I posted a question on a Facebook group of Ask the Rabbi. I am interested to know whether this behaviour is permissible by Torah law.

The first response I had was from a lawyer who stated:
"I think it would be appropriate to compensate the therapist something for her time, even if not the full amount of the session. He/she did block out time in their schedule for the client / potential client that they can't use for someone else and did spend some time discussing with the potential client. I don't think, given the facts, the potential client must do so, but I think it is the mencshlik thing to do."

After some discussion and comments from another lawyer who mentioned she has the same problem and hence has a rule to give only a few minutes. Any advice requires taking a history which means a consultation. Consultations are paid services.

Rabbi Ari Shishler then commented: 
"Just a Torah insight: One is not allowed to commit "geneivas da'as", which means misleading a person. One example is not to enter a shop and feign interest in a product you have no intention of buying" 

From this post, I hope that potential clients will learn, what kinds of questions are permissible and how long is reasonable to spend asking them. Once you have heard the therapist can or can not treat x group of patients then decide on whether you will work with that therapist. If you need an initial session to make that decision, that is fine, however it is a consultation which must be paid for. As both the rabbi and lawyers point out, misleading a professional or taking their professional time is problematic. The correct thing to do by both Torah law and basic manners is to pay for the professional time you have taken.

Once you book a session, cancelling later becomes "Geneivas Da'as", literally stealing knowledge, especially if the therapist only gave information in order to encourage you to book and keep the session, which is not permitted by Torah law.  

This post was prepared for you by Shoshanah Shear
Occupational Therapist, Healing Facilitator
Certified Infant Massage Instructor
Certified Kallah Teacher
Artist, Photographer and Author

 

Thursday, 12 February 2015

Teletubbies Jigsaw Puzzle


This happy, colourful jigsaw puzzle is of the Teletubbies. It has 63 pieces and is made from wood. The puzzle provides much opportunity for children to learn and discuss, colours, words related to outdoors, gardens, nature. The yellow Teletubby has a physioball and the red Teletubby has a scooter; as a result it has potential for children requiring occupational therapy to discuss their therapy needs and process by talking about the Teletubbies.

Building jigsaw puzzles is good for visual perception, visual memory, form constancy and more.

Your child can also learn patience, concentration and a skill to be able to play independently. 

As you can see, there is much to gain from your child building puzzles. If you would like to purchase this jigsaw puzzle, you will find it on our website. Click on the link and you are welcome to purchase it.

This post is prepared for you by 
Occupational Therapist, Healing Facilitator
Certified Infant Massage Instructor
Certified Kallah Teacher
Artist, Photographer and Author


Wednesday, 11 February 2015

Occupational Therapy and Music combined in Therakey

There are many times I have found myself trying to explain that OT's use many different activities during treatment and music is one of them, when appropriate to the patient or client. I am very excited to learn of a new program developed by a colleague in the U.S. Dr. Frederick B. Covington called Therakey.

Take a look for yourselves at the few minute YouTube Video.

One of the exciting aspects of Occupational Therapy is that the location of treatment, intervention or development of a program can take place in various different settings. What do you think of the location of this video? Personally, I think it's pretty cool. I look forward to getting to know this program more. 




Hope you enjoyed the video, remember to let us know your thoughts or comments below.

This post is prepared for you by Shoshanah Shear
Occupational Therapist, Healing Facilitator
Certified Infant Massage Instructor
Certified Kallah Teacher

Tuesday, 10 February 2015

Group Forming for OTs working Privately in Israel

Are you a licensed occupational therapist working privately in Israel? Are you interested in a network group with other OTs working privately? We have a few already interested and need another 2-3 in order to begin a group. The group will probably be virtual due to the fact that Private OTs are scattered in different cities in Israel.

If you are interested in joining, please email me as soon as possible with your name and contact information.

Looking forward to hearing from you

Shoshanah Shear
Occupational Therapist, Healing Facilitator
Certified Kallah Teacher
Certified Infant Massage Instructor

Monday, 9 February 2015

Who Benefits from Infant Massage?


Many ask what the benefits of Infant Massage are, but before we get to what the benefits are, we need to address the question of who benefits from this form of massage.

The word infant of course means baby. So top of the list of those who benefit will be the baby who received the massage, especially if it is given by the parents and the parents have been trained. However, the baby is not the only one to benefit.

The parent giving the massage benefits in many ways. Firstly it is relaxing to give a massage. Secondly it is reassuring to know that there is something one can do to help ones baby. Next, the act of giving the massage strengthens the bond between parent and baby. Next, when baby is calm and in a good sleep routine, the sound of silence from a contented baby is heartwarming to all.

If there are others in the house, they stand to gain too when baby is sleeping deeply in a good routine. Imagine the contrast between a content baby and one screaming from colic, gas or other problem. The quiet, contented baby is far more pleasurable to be around than the screaming baby for all concerned. The quiet, happy baby will benefit neighbours too since it wont disturb them with endless crying. This comes from regular infant massage.

Of course, we are talking about a baby who is quiet due to being content, happy and relaxed and not a baby who is quiet due to hearing or other problems. 

Aside from the immediate benefits, there are long term benefits of infant massage. The long term benefits will have a ripple effect to others who come into contact with the relaxed, contented baby as s/he grows and develops.

Further than this, the infant massage instructor certainly benefits to know that the parents who came to learn infant massage are carrying out what they learnt. It is very satisfying for any teacher or instructor to know that what they taught is being put into practise. 

I would say that the paediatrician would also benefit from the baby receiving infant massage as the baby is more likely to be co-operative and less likely to have severe sensory problems which makes the role and job of the doctor a far more pleasurable one.

So if you are wondering who benefits from infant massage, I'd say everyone who comes into contact with the baby who received the massage. Having met adults who did not receive infant massage as a baby and have developed various behvioural, sensory problems and more, I'd say that this benefit lasts a lifetime.

This post is prepared for you by Shoshanah Shear
Occupational Therapist, Healing Facilitator
Certified Infant Massage Instructor
Certified Kallah Teacher
Artist, Photographer and Author


Sunday, 8 February 2015

Learning on YouTube

Do you have goals that you wish to fulfill? Have you turned to the vast array of YouTube videos to help gain skills, insight and more? If your answer is yes, then I have a question I hope you can assist me with.

I'm in the process of researching to improve my marketing and publicity. As such, I too have been learning from a few YouTube videos and experts. In several of them I am finding a video style that I don't understand. The style is the have the speaker face the camera and begin to discuss his or her topic and after about a minute, the video changes direction. The video jumps and either the speaker has to move to meet up with the videographer
so as to continue to face the audience or s/he is filmed in profile.

I understand the change after about a minute might be to try to keep the viewer rather than have the viewer disconnect. Do you find it helps keep your attention or do you find it as distraction?

For me, the sudden change of video direction and the speaker moving and moving back and forth is very distracting and rather irritating. 

As an O.T. I have worked with clients with difficulty with distraction, concentration and attention. As a result, I am interest to hear from videographers and from those who view these YouTube video's. Do you find the constant change of video and speaker to help to maintain your interest or are you like me and find it frustrating and irritating?

What is your experience and what would be the ideal for you. Your input is most appreciated as it will help us in preparing should we too, begin offering some YouTube videos.

Friday, 6 February 2015

The Benefit of Doing Puzzles

I've heard some mothers state that they don't have space for puzzles. Or they do not permit their children to have puzzles as the pieces get lost too easily. Or if they have many toys, games and puzzles in the house, they just have a lot of mess to clear up. These thoughts are cause for concern, however, there are ways to help maintain your puzzles neatly in their boxes without their becoming a mess or having pieces lost. That issue we can deal with in another post.

Have you stopped to consider the benefit to a child or adult from doing puzzles? The image shown here is of a puzzle that does not have a detailed picture on the pieces. 
Of course, if the pieces had a design on them, the potential for improving developmental skills is greatly enhanced.

Let us look for a few moments at these four pieces that are correctly or incorrectly interlinked. What skills are required for your child?

Firstly, hand-eye co-ordination to position the pieces. Fine motor skills to be able to manipulate the puzzle pieces. The child also needs to be able to see and understand the shape of the piece that has a gap and the piece that has a protruding section and be able to determine whether these are an accurate fit or not. This is the beginning of problem solving and decision making.

Once a puzzle also had designs and details on, the child needs to be able to match shapes and colours. Those who struggle with this skill will be able to improve their colour matching and matching shapes by doing puzzles. Being able to remember the picture as a whole and to differentiate which parts are required and in what positions to make up the whole, are also parts of visual perception that are required and worked on when building puzzles.

What else goes into making or building puzzles? Do you have any thoughts?

There are actually more skills required and more ways in which you can assist the development of your child in order to ensure effective learning just by doing puzzles. We'd love to hear from you, hence I have left a few for you to add by making a comment at the bottom of this post. 

If your child has difficulty learning and especially in doing puzzles, you are welcome to be in touch for an occupational therapy evaluation and possible intervention.

If you are looking for affordable puzzles for your children, do take a look at the ones we have in stock in our online store

Thank you for reading this post. I hope you have found it beneficial.

This post is prepared for you by 
Occupational Therapist, Healing Facilitator
Infant Massage Instructor
Kallah Teacher
Artist, Photographer and Author

Thursday, 5 February 2015

Physio Therapy and a Patient in a Coma


One of our readers was interested to know the role of the physio therapist in the treatment of a comatosed or unconscious patient. I have not trained as a physio therapist so I stand to be corrected. If there is a reader who is a physio and has more information to add, please do post a comment below.

From my experience in working in Neurosurgery ICU and General ICU, the physio therapist was involved in providing chest physio and passive range of movement for the limbs. Chest physio for someone who is unable to breathe independently or who lacks a cough reflex is a very important part of the management of someone who is unconscious. 

Generally the one to teach family members about and how to carry out suctioning would be the physio. Why is this necessary and all the details are good questions and it is suggested that you speak to your physio therapist for the most appropriate answer.

Since those who are unconscious are not actively moving, providing passive movements are very important to ensure that muscles are able to maintain their maximum range of movement at the joints. There is some overlap in this area between what the O.T. provides and what the physio provides. There are times you might also find the P.T. and O.T. carry out a session or series of sessions together on the same patient. 

Imagine for a moment that you were to sleep for a week, a few weeks, a month or a year and were not able to turn yourself, move your limbs, scratch an itch or many other normal movements that generally take place during sleep. What will happen when you wake up? Do you think your muscles will move normally? What problems can you think of that might arise from being asleep for a length of time, unable to move by yourself?

This post is prepared for you by 
Occupational Therapist
 


Puzzles and Kids Toys in Our Online Store

In a previous post, I invited you, the readers of this blog to visit my developing online store. In this post I'd like to let you know about the first category in the store.

The first category is devoted to puzzles and kids toys. This section is small at present as most of our toys and games have sold. However, we do plan to add further items. If you have a special request for affordable toys and games or for hand made toys and games, please do be in touch.

Currently in stock are approximately 4 puzzles and a very cute teddy bear. 

If you have a suggestion or request for tips or information about how a toy or game can assist your child's development, you are welcome to be in touch for that too.

Please visit this blog often as we will be posting information related to each of the individual items. More about each category will be shared too.

We look forward to hearing from you and to providing for your needs through our developing online store.  We hope you will find the prices to be affordable to you and that your shopping experience with us will be a pleasant one.

Have a blessed day

Shoshanah

Monday, 2 February 2015

Invitation to Visit Our On Line Store





Do you have any goals? How about a dream that you'd like to fulfil? 


I have a goal and a dream too. As a second year student of occupational therapy, I began to think of a treatment centre that I'd like to develop. It's been a goal and a dream for well over 20 years now. I have had many knocks along the way and each knock gives me another idea of something to include, alter or adapt to my ultimate vision. The journey has been an interesting one. Some aspects I have often thought I'd rather do without, however, some of the most difficult challenges are certainly shaping and contributing to the work I now do and the centre in the making.

The current task at hand is developing our store. We are just in the initial stages of learning how to develop an on line store and including products, features and more. I'd like to ask for your input. Can you do me a little favour? Can you visit the link to our 
on line store, browse around and send me a comment of one factor you like about what you see and one idea you have that can help to make shopping in this store, easier, more user friendly and a pleasant shopping experience.

As a thank you for your time, you can receive a discount to your purchase in our store.

So join us in our journey to develop a Torah-Healing Centre. Visit our store often as products are added, features are altered and remember to make your purchase today, as there is no telling if it will still be in stock tomorrow.

Thank you for your assistance

Shoshanah Shear
Occupational Therapist, Healing Facilitator
Certified Kallah Teacher
Certified Infant Massage Instructor
Artist, Photographer and Author
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