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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
he hates it. he wont hold even remotely still. and he also hates joint compression. he has serious control issues, so even though he enjoys the sensation of the brush on his body, he cant handle the fact that he must devote time to being manipulated this way. should i just make him endure it? that feels so disrespectful. what can i do?

ETA: how long b4 i see results? i do it, or try to, 3x a day. he has OT 30 mins once a week. do some kids just not benefit from it?
 

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So do it in little bits instead of all at once. When I first started brushing Nitara she hated it, too. I just started doing it during diaper changes. Just one leg or even part of one leg. I sang the song, "This is how we brush your leg, . . . so early in the morning." After I was done I let her brush me and herself. It took awhile to get her used to it. I saw results very quickly, about 1-2 weeks. In addition to the brushing I also did swinging with her, and body compression (basically wore her in the sling and pulled it up to her neck and then made it tight). The swinging was done on the swingset outside. She never enjoyed joint compression and it didn't help, so I stopped doing that pretty much right away.
 

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Two of my kids hated it initially. My daughter took a lot of prep work -- a couple weeks of massages instead of brushing, letting her brush herself and me -- but came to like it. My youngest still doesn't go for it. Every OT we've had has said not to force it -- brushing can make problems *worse* if it's done incorrectly or with coercion.

For results, I think it depends on the type of problem being targeted. If it's a general regulation issue, the results may be more subtle and/or take longer. My oldest son needed regular brushing for a few months. We tried stopping a couple of times, and it was apparent that he still needed it. Later, we stopped and didn't see a difference. If it's a specific issue, it may take a short time to see results. When my oldest boy went through an episode of shirt chewing last winter, his OT said that we would give it 2 weeks of brushing therapy -- if there were no results in that time, then we needed to look for another cause for the behavior. In 2 weeks, the problem behavior was gone, and it hasn't returned.

One other point is that the OTs I've worked with have stressed that the brushing/joint compression protocol needs to be done 8-10 times a day for results to occur. I'm sure this isn't true of every kid (nothing is true for *every* kid), but with my oldest, I could tell the difference when I did it 8-10 times and when I only did it 4-5 times in a day.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
8-10? i think i'm gonna cry! our OT gave us a page that said do it every 2 hrs, but then she told us that as a mom herself, she didnt expect anyone to do that much, so just do 3x/day. i'll ask her about that tomorrow.

ETA: for various reasons, i think we have just become an unschooling family. we go to bed around 11pm and get up around 9 or 10 am. not my preference, but it just seems to be how our collective bodies are working. so...get up at 9am and brush...11am, 1pm, 3pm, 5pm, 7pm, 9pm, 11pm, go to bed. omg, how would i ever leave the house?
 

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We ended up stopping brushing because it was doing more aggrevating and compounding her issues than soothing and assisting in providing proper input. Joint compression is a sensitive thing. Sometimes she will ask for it, others she will run screaming if we say something about it...

Talk to your SI team about the reactions, and look into alternatives. Deep pressure blankets, 'wiping' with either a softer brush or satin touch cloth, that sort of thing, often works in the same way that the brushing protocol is supposed to...
 

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Do ask your OT. The OTs I worked with were trained in the protocol and had specific reasons for advising 8 - 10 times a day. But your OT knows your child, and assuming she knows what she is doing with the protocol (instead of just throwing it out there as an idea), she may have very good reasons for saying 3 times a day is enough for your child. 8-10 times a day does make things difficult -- when we were working on the specific problem, we stayed in for 2 weeks and set the timer for 90 minutes intervals (but at the end of that 2 weeks, the problem was solved, so it was worth it).
 
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