Has anyone here had any direct experience with the Tomatis method? My daughter had her Early Intervention annual review today and they are recommending it (and willing to pay for it). I am not sure what to do, and could use any information you wish to share...either here or via PM. Thank you!
My kids were 4 and 6 when they did it. In their case, being in combination with OT for sensory processing disorder, the purpose was to facilitate the changes in the brain that the OT was making (the Star Center believes in a short, intensive program as making faster, better changes in the brain than the typical once-per-week therapy schedule). However, my then-4-y.o. did have significant improvement with his speech during that time, according to his teacher and his speech therapist. My 6 y.o. didn't have speech issues per se at that point in time, but her ability to process phonics improved significantly (she was reading below grade level; now it's a year and a half later but she's reading above grade level). With the OT, she also showed a very significant improvement in her ability to do her vision therapy - long story - but it's hard to know what role the listening therapy played there. It all seems rather hocus-pocus. But the bottom line is we were happy with the results, and for us the big ticket $ was the OT to begin with; the listening therapy just cost a little extra (we paid out of pocket).
Listening therapy is rather controversial - some people benefit and some don't. It's basically listening to music - usually mozart or similar - certain frequencies at a time. At worst, it's harmless. Because it's so controversial I'm surprised EI is willing to pay for it (though perhaps the tide is turning in the controversy and I'm unaware?).
Personally, if EI thinks it might help and they're willing to pay, I'd go for it. I'd want to be sure it's a reputable program (apparently out there on the internet there are "fakes" that are loosely based on Tomatis but don't correctly follow the method or something).
For what reason are they recommending it? Is it to help with speech/auditory issues or is it to be done in combination with OT for sensory stuff? Very interesting. This is the first I've ever heard of EI offering it.
Apparently, our EI program in our area is big time "on board" with Tomatis, and we have a program that is supposed to be totally true Tomatis right in our area. They are recommending it for my daughter for multiple reasons....because she has been in speech therapy for a year now and is still barely spontaneously talking at all (although she has had major improvement since she started...when she had lost all words and sounds)...because of her severe sensory processing disorder.....and I think also maybe because they think she also has auditory processing disorder. I am pretty sure I am going to have to have a new audiological done first though, because she is not responding to a lot of sound behind her back and farther away noises...so we have to see if she is hearing well. She had an "iffy" audiological done a year ago..but they felt she was too young for the results to be clear cut. (My daughter presently receives speech, OT, PT, and special ed services through our local EI. Well...We are waiting on the special ed services. Hopefully they will have a special ed teacher for her soon.)
For those who have done it before, can you tell me how long each session of listening lasted, what they listened to and what else they had to do at the same time, and how many sessions spaced over what period of time were involved? I think these parts are of the most concern to me. (Of course, I continue to want to know if you feel that th eprocess was helpful for your child too!) Thanks,
My kids had the listening therapy in conjunction with OT as follows: 3x per week for four weeks, then a month off, then 2x per week for four weeks. Each session was about an hour, maybe a little less. They wore headphones attached to a cd player around their waist. During this time, they had OT in a large OT gym that specializes in sensory stuff (mostly, movement activities to address proprioceptive and vestibular issues. My kids didn't have much issue with tactile). The headphones were special bone-conducting headphones, such that the sound travelled along the skull as well as being played into the ears (or something like that
We also purchased the home program from Integrated Listening (it had regular headphones, cd player with waist pack, and 12 cds). I wish we had gotten around to using this more often since I think it helped. At home, ds would just play quietly while listening - no tv or eating or reading allowed during it. It came with suggested activities.
I have heard of kids getting speech therapy during listening, but I wonder whether that could be confusing - trying to listen to the speech therapist at the same time.
With your dd's potential hearing issue, I would think that the bone conducting headphones would be the way to go. I think it's really neat that they're offering it. It can't hurt to try it, and it just might help (though I wouldn't necessarily hold my breath).
I went to an info meeting on Tomatis. It was very interesting and very expensive. If my insurance, or TEFRA, or EI was going to pay for it, I would have been willing to put Jayce in a program. Also, the closest center is in NC, so the drive would have been an issue, too.