Using an Integrative OT/VT model to Treat Concussion

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Trying to meet all of the rehab needs of those suffering from a concussion or developmental disability can be daunting, and commonly patients are treated piecemeal by many different providers. This Intermediate level course introduces you to a model of occupational therapy and optometry working together to meet the entire needs of the person, with occupational therapy at the helm of function and optometry at the helm of vision. Participants will learn how to use this model to combine vision remediation tools, directed by optometry, with integrative concepts of using the vagus nerve, interoception awareness and function to significantly improve your rehab outcomes and your patient’s performance. By occupational therapy and optometry working together, the roles of play, school, work, sport and leisure can improve faster to get your clients back to life. Physical, Occupational and Speech therapists, in addition to optometrists, pediatricians and any concussion providers, will all benefit from a deeper understanding of the functional role of the visual system in their patient’s performance, regardless of age or diagnosis.

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Interoception: Using An Interoceptive-Based Approach To Improve Vision-based Functional Deficits

Presented by Meghan Chemidlin, OTD, MS, OTR/L

Have you ever noticed your eyes moving, your heart racing, your skin sweating or your head pounding? Do you know how you are able to feel these things? It’s thanks to our eighth sensory system known as interoception. Interoception is the ability to recognize and perceive physiological body signals. This sense is gathering information from your entire body to determine how your body feels. When one has difficulties recognizing or understanding these body signals, it can lead to several difficulties and deficits. Research shows however, it can be improved. This introductory course will introduce the learners to interoception and describe how it can impact one’s performance, including those with vision deficits. The course will also review how poor interoceptive awareness can lead to difficulties recognizing emotions and cause difficulties with regulation, further impacting one’s ability. The participants will learn how they can implement an interoceptive-based intervention into practice to help improve a patient’s performance, specifically with vision related functional deficits, as well as identify other benefits to improving interoceptive awareness.

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Understanding Visual Spatial Deficits for Improved Therapeutic Outcomes

Presented by Amber Fessler, OTD, MS, OTR/L

Visual-spatial processing is vital for many daily life activities from mobility to cognition. Individuals with visual-spatial impairments exhibit challenges with safely navigating obstacles within their environment, understanding directional concepts, letter or word reversals, and more. This 2-hour course will outline the hierarchical performance factors needed to develop visual-spatial processing skills. Through the presentation of evidence-based information, case study review, and activity, participants will learn screening and treatment techniques that can be implemented into practice immediately.

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“Can You See Me Now?”: Measuring Remedial Vision Success

Presented by Susan Briggs, OTD, OTR/L

Remedial vision rehabilitation is an emerging area of specialty in occupational therapy.  Remedial vision can be measured with various instruments and assessments, but which ones are the best and give the most information to benefit the patient, therapist, and the neuro-optometrist directing treatment? Understanding how to administer the assessments and why to use each assessment tool is essential to demonstrate remedial vision improvements and a successful program.  This intermediate course will provide the therapist (OT, OTA, PT, PTA) with information on what remedial vision rehabilitation addresses and assessments or screens that can be used for outcomes and to measure the program’s success.  At the end of the course, the therapist should feel more comfortable completing an evaluation using the described measurement tools in their remedial vision rehabilitation program.

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