RE: ADD/ADHD Problems and Tech Writing/Editing Careers

Subject: RE: ADD/ADHD Problems and Tech Writing/Editing Careers
From: "Tina Poole" <Poole_Tina_L -at- cat -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Fri, 18 Jun 2004 13:41:15 +1000

I haven't been following this entire thread but would
like to relate my personal experience about the diagnosis
and treatment of ADD.

My son was diagnosed with ADD in Grade One after having
problems with his school work. He
was always on the move and could not sit still. This
led to a short attention span and no concentration.
He had always been like this but it was only when
he started Year One that it became a real issue as
he was unable to grasp reading and writing even
though he is very bright.

After doing some reading, I just didn't think that ADD was
him. So I decided to take him to an occupational therapist
who specialises in children. The initial consultation was
over three hours and we got back a thirty page report with
the diagnosis being quite different. He had a sensory processing problem
where he was constantly seeking sensory inputs and that was
why he was always moving. The problem is that he swings
from low to normal to overloaded. When reading he could do the first
three pages easily but as he went further through the book
it got harder and harder as his senses became overloaded.

So we began occupational therapy, learning to recognise
where your engine is and how to make your "engine" run
just right for what you are doing. He now has strategies
for speeding up his engine or slowing down his engine.
Some examples are

- hourglass - watch the sand go through - brings engine down
- small nail brush - brush arms and legs - brings engine down
- walk around the class or go for a run along the corridor - speeds up the
- pick a word and try to get lots of rhyming words - speeds up the engine

The hourglass and brush are part of his "Engine Toolkit" that
sits on his desk at school. Along with a speedometer to remind
him that he must monitor where his engine is.

The best thing so far is deep pressure therapy. This is also
used for Autistic children. The first time we wrapping my son very tightly
in a sheet like a mummy, he said it was the first time his body ever felt
and wanted to do it all the time. Now to help in school when he does
reading and writing he now has a lap bag which is a long flat bag
filled with wheat and is quite heavy. The pressure helps him to
keep his engine from running too fast while he is concentrating.

Well, to cut a long story short he is just coming along in leaps and
bounds. He has caught up with the rest of the class and for maths
is top of the class. Hope this may have been interesting!



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