Effectiveness of sensory stimulation among children with impaired psychomotor development: a pilot study
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Department of Physiotherapy in Neurology and Paediatrics, University School of Physical Education in Wrocław, Wrocław, Poland
Submission date: 2020-05-03
Acceptance date: 2020-09-21
Publication date: 2021-06-21
Physiother Quart. 2021;29(2):67-72
The sense of balance, proprioception, and exteroception are key for healthy psychomotor development and proper functioning of human beings. Any disorders in this area may cause dysfunctions, problems with tactile stimuli perception and muscle tone regulation, as well as lack of motion and body awareness. The aim of the study was to evaluate the effectiveness of sensory integration therapy as a method of supporting psychomotor development in children residing in a long-term care and nursing home.

The study involved 16 children, randomly divided into 2 equal groups, permanently living in a long-term care and nursing home in Poland. None of the children was diagnosed with autism. The psychomotor development was evaluated with the Sensorimotor History Questionnaire (based on the questionnaire by Balzer-Martin) and the Southern California Postrotary Nystagmus Test by Ayres. The research was performed between October 1, 2016 and June 30, 2017. Each participant underwent the test twice – prior to the therapy and after 8 months of therapy.

There were significant changes in the psychomotor development in the treatment group in areas not correlated with the children’s age.

The therapy using the sensory integration approach can potentially support the development of children who are permanent residents of a long-term care and nursing home. The classic formula of the sensory integration therapy (i.e. 1 session per week) may be insufficient in the case of permanently institutionalized children. The study should be expanded and carried out in larger groups of children.

Statistics Poland. 2017. Available from: http://stat.gov.pl/.
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