Here we are in the 21st century but we find ourselves amidst a world crisis requiring us to transport ourselves to a different time, a time of zoom calls, social distance, and virtual reunions and birthdays. Schools are closed, churches are closed, most major businesses are closed but that doesn’t mean the story has to end there.
We know that in the middle of this crisis, many of you have lost access to vital services and supports to help your children be successful in their daily lives. We know that your routines have been completely upended and we know how unsettling that has been for all of us. The good news is that, while Emerge has closed their literal doors to the clinic, we have opened our doors virtually to be able to continue to provide impactful services right in the comfort of your own homes. Emerge Pediatric Therapy has been using the platform called “Thera-link” to continue building on the skills your children have been learning.
In fact, there are some benefits to providing services through this platform that afford opportunities that in person therapy sessions may not. Here are a list of some reasons why Teletherapy services may be right for your child:
- We get to engage your child in their most natural learning environment (their home), which often helps reduce anxiety and stress that new settings might bring.
- We get more time to work with parents and provide real-time coaching and strategies that could support your child (and you) in their daily lives.
- We can work with your child and their siblings to encourage positive relationships with each other. This lends itself to opportunities for us to work on social skills, problem solving skills, social language, perspective taking, negotiation, and turn taking skills between your child and their sibling.
- We can work on several activities of daily living, such as feeding, bathing, dressing, and toileting skills in the environment in which most of these skills are actually performed.
- We get more time to show parents precisely how to utilize the tools and supports we use during therapy sessions.
- We have the opportunity to observe behaviors that your child may only be demonstrating within the home environment and provide parents with real-time strategies to encourage emotional development and decrease unhelpful behaviors.
- For teenage clients, Telehealth lends itself to working on functional communication in the age of digital communication. For examples, many teenagers communicate with each other via video chats, such as Facetime or GoogleDuo. Telehealth allows for us to work on appropriate social skills when communicating digitally (for example, learning how to wait for your turn to speak, how to determine when to change the topic of conversation, or how to read facial expressions, body language, and tone of voice through video chats.
- Telehealth allows us to see your home and how it is set up. Your therapist may be able to make suggestions on ways to modify your home environment to best support your child’s learning style. For example, if your child’s sensory profile reveals that they are an over-responder to visual input, a view inside your home may give your therapist some ideas on how to make your home environment less visually overwhelming for your child.
- While an online platform may also present with some degree of technical difficulties, one other perk of Telehealth is that there is often a lag time between what is communicated and what is heard. This slower pace of conversation may serve as advantageous to many of your children, who may struggle with processing speed and need for verbal information to be delivered more slowly and intentionally.
While we know that this shift to Telehealth brings up a lot of newness, for both your child as well as for their therapist, we also believe that we are offering evidenced-based and highly skilled intervention through this platform. So please, hurry, get to the time capsule and teleport yourself over to Telehealth today!