| Washington Elks Therapy Program for Children

1 year old Ida is a perfect example of why the WA Elks Therapy Program is so vital to our communities! Ida was referred to our program at 9 months old by her pediatrician. Ida was born a somewhat small infant, a little over 4 pounds, and about 3 weeks early. She appeared to be perfectly healthy. However, it was first noticed at her 4 month check up, Ida began to lose weight instead of gain weight, and she was not developing motor skills as quickly as her doctor and family expected. At 9 months, Ida was still very slender, and was just learning to sit up. She didn’t like being on her tummy, and showed little interest in moving around.

Ida’s pediatrician wanted services that could watch and help Ida in her own, comfortable environment—AND who could include the family in recommended activities. They also felt that Ida’s needs were likely short term, and that her family would have excellent follow-through. Ida’s needs did not warrant a referral to a more complicated, comprehensive medical based or Birth to 3 program, and the Elks Therapy Program was a perfect fit.

Ida received weekly home occupational therapy, during which her family was shown activities and positions that would encourage Ida to move, crawl, etc. Ida was comfortable and very cooperative during sessions, and seemed to enjoy the activities provided! It was determined that she did not like being on her tummy because it upset her belly and she often spit up. A minor diet change and careful positioning improved her tolerance dramatically! A feeding assessment was done, and no other oral motor or sensory issues were found. Her family was given ideas to modify foods to increase texture and calories. After only 7 weeks of therapy, Ida gained over 5 pounds, and went from barely sitting, to pulling to standing, and crawling all over the house!!

Ida’s family needed short term, in home therapy services—thank goodness the Elks Therapy Program was there!

Washington State Elks Association