Therapeutic Listening Overview:
Occupational Therapists and other professionals have begun to incorporate sound-based technologies into their practices. Therapeutic Listening is one of the most cutting edge Sensory Integration treatment approaches used today by Occupational Therapists. It combines the therapeutic benefits of music with sophisticated sound technology in conjunction with child specific sensory diets.
Therapeutic Listening is a highly individualized form of sound therapy involving the selective, therapeutic use of electronically altered music on compact discs, individually selected for each client based on needs, done in combination with Sensory Integration treatment strategies at home as well as within treatment sessions. A wide variety of music is used, such as children s songs, nature sounds, vocals as well as classical music. The CD selection process is made by a Certified Therapeutic Listening Provider, based on the specific behavioral, motor and communication needs of each child. This program is affordable when compared to other sound based interventions with the added benefit of daily implementation at home and / or school. Children 2 years and older generally participate in this program but modified interventions can also be applied to the child younger than 2 years old.
Therapeutic Listening Benefits Children With:
- Receptive and expressive language delays
- Attention and direction following issues
- Sensitivity to sounds (Auditory Defensiveness)
- Movement seeking behaviors
- Confusion over direction of sounds
- Delays in motor skills
- Praxis / motor planning issues as well as poor body in space awareness
- Children who appear shut down or disconnected such as some children on the
- Autism spectrum
Progress That Can Be Seen With Therapeutic Listening
As with all other treatments for the human nervous system, results will be individualized. Some changes that can be expected to occur include:
- Facilitates emergent language skills (imitation of sounds / words)
- Improved quantity and quality of language
- Oral-motor skills
- Overall Social interaction / Social skills
- Greater range of non-verbal communication
- Improved expression of wants and needs
- Greater emotional expressiveness
- Self Regulation
- A smoothing out of mood variance and emotional state
- Improved focus and attention
- Improved ability to deal with change and transition
- Improved attention and organization / modulation of behavior
- Improvement in sleep/wake cycles
- Improved Sensory Processing
- Reduction of sensory defensive behaviors (e.g. to touch, visual, auditory and movement input)
- Improvement in toilet training, especially over the age of 5 years old
- Increased regularity of hunger and thirst cycles
- Postural tone / postural attention
- Improved ability to cross body midline (midline crossing)
- Ability to sustain active posture on stable and dynamic surfaces (balance)
- Improved co-contraction around shoulders and hips (improved strength)
- Active use of rotation in movement patterns
- Motor control
- Use of bilateral motor patterns (Bilateral Coordination)
- Improved ability to plan, sequence and execute motor actions (praxis / motor planning)
- Improved speech development / oral-motor skills – articulation
- Improved fine motor and gross motor coordination
- Spatial-temporal organization
- Improved timing of motor execution and social interactions
- Discrimination of dimensionality and directionality of spatial concepts
- Improved ability to maneuver through space / body in space awareness
- Improved handwriting and visual motor skills
This Program is Not Recommended For:
- Individuals diagnosed with Auditory Induced Seizures
- Individuals diagnosed with Schizophrenia
Only a Certified Therapeutic Listening Provider can implement and oversee Therapeutic Listening programs. These individuals are usually Occupational Therapists or Speech Therapists and have undergone specific training in how to assess needs, select music as well as oversee the program.
My Son, Ryan responded extremely well to Therapeutic Listening at the onset of his program. He instantly began to speak more clearly and in longer sentences and was better able to handle the typical stresses of his everyday life. When we began the program at home, he was more alert and focused, better able to complete table top activities and follow the routine of our home. He also began to sleep better and ate a few new foods within the first few weeks. We are very, very pleased with the progress that Ryan made with the Therapeutic Listening program.
-Audrey Mariani, Marlton, NJ
Stephen started at Sensational Kids with a lot of sensory issues. He used to be sensitive to noises and also had significant language delays. His therapist suggested Therapeutic Listening to help with his sensory processing and language delay issues. He at first did not tolerate the headphones, but progressively was able to after just a few sessions and a few tricks implemented by his therapist. He is now on his third CD and keeps the headphones on without any resistance. I am amazed at the difference in my son since starting Therapeutic Listening . He is now starting to imitate words and is more attentive to different tasks. I am excited to continue on with this program and can t wait to see how Stephen changes in the future.
-Elizabeth Lentz, Audubon, NJ
At last, a program that benefits children and parents without turning their world upside down. I started doing Therapeutic Listening with my 6 year-old son Jimmy over the summer and the changes in his behavior have been nothing short of remarkable. Jimmy is now more aware of his environment, engages in more imaginative play with his toys and is far more tolerant of situations that used to send him into meltdowns. He is better able to calm himself and regulate his behavior. This has led to growth and development on his part that I could not have imagined six months ago. Jimmy recently had to transition into a new school for first grade (with new teachers & aides), and I believe the Listening Program had a large part in making this transition less stressful for Jimmy. The Therapeutic Listening program is affordable and easy for parents to implement as part of their child’s therapy routine. I even took the discs with us on vacation and found the schedule easy to keep. The Therapeutic Listening program is tailored to each child’s needs and the results are immediate: Jimmy, who is tense and hyperactive, actually relaxed during his first session. I would highly recommend Therapeutic Listening to any parent looking to supplement their child’s therapy without breaking the bank.
– Debbie C.