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I am Gretchen Fontanini, the occupational therapist at Courser Lapo Therapeutic Wellness Center.

Do you, your parent, grandparent, or your child struggle with or have any of the following difficulties:
ADHD, anxiety, ASD, poor body awareness, poor balance, poor fine motor/gross motor control, explosive anger with unknown triggers, decreased academic performance, visual/spatial difficulties, sleep issues, toileting issues, or texture aversions? If so, Occupational Therapy may be the right fit!

WHAT IS OCCUPATIONAL THERAPY?

Many signs and symptoms can be perceived as behavioral issues, when in reality most behavior is communication. When someone experiences difficulties processing information from their senses, it can cause distress. This can result in behaviors perceived as issues. For example, a child that experiences toileting issues may be having sensory overload that causes disruption in processing the information that they need to use the restroom. Solving sensory issues consequently can solve “misbehavior.” An Occupational Therapist is able to help individuals navigate sensory information and help them to integrate it into their lives.

Occupational Therapy is centered around providing therapeutic assistance to those that struggle with impairments that disrupt daily life activities. The activities may be as basic as bathing or dressing, or as complex as operating a computer with modified control switches. Occupational Therapy covers the full spectrum of health. It can assess and treat developmental, physical, and emotional health. In occupational therapy, we utilize activities that are meaningful to the client. For example, say an individual recovering from a stroke enjoys playing the piano. If they utilize a piano in session, the therapist is aiding in fine motor skill recovery as well as giving them back the joy of doing something they love.

WHAT CAN I OFFER?

I have been practicing as an OT for over 25 years, but for the past 8 years I have narrowed my field of practice by receiving over 130 hours of continuing education in the areas of neuro-developmental movements and primitive/primary reflex integration through MNRI (Masgutova Neurosensorimotor Reflex Integration), RMT(Rhythmic Movement Training), Brain and Sensory Foundations, and Dr. Karen Pryor course work. (Google will give you lots of info!) In the OT session, I use a variety of all of the above methods/techniques (and teach them to caregivers) to help develop better neurological communication in the brain. Over time, with better brain/body communication an individual should feel more comfortable in his/her own skin, and more aware of feelings and sensations.
In addition, I feel strongly about including parents and caregivers in almost every session. Individuals leave each session with specific activities they can work on every day at home.
I also work closely with other care providers like speech therapists, physical therapists, chiropractors, and behavioral therapists, in order to make sure I am providing care that supports all types of treatment.

If you think you or a loved one could benefit from Occupational Therapy, reach out today! I currently have openings, and would love to provide you or your loved one support. Thank you!

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