February Spotlight: Intensive Therapy Sessions

First of all, we want to say we hope you all had a blessed holiday season and to wish you all a very Happy New Year from MMPT!

2014 has definitely started out with a bang! As many of you know, we take a word from John Maxwell’s “Minute from Maxwell” to help us reflect before going into each day in order to provide the best care for our patients and to remind us to spend time on bettering ourselves. Our word for this year is Maximize and we are truly aiming to utilize each of our gifts and have started this year by reminding ourselves of our strengths and how we can best use them to better our talents as therapists and in our lives personally.

To jumpstart the year and maximize our gifts at MMPT, we have already begun three Intensive Therapy sessions which are truly proving rewarding for the patient and their therapy team!

Intensive Therapy is a program in which a patient attends treatment for 3-4 hour long sessions for 3-4 weeks depending on their needs. The therapy team creates a very personalized plan of care for the patient with specific goals, and equipment needs, while creating a welcoming and fun atmosphere to keep the patient engaged for the prolonged time.

Gaines Aldy has been coming to MMPT West Monroe campus since he was about 2 months old. He was born at 36 weeks with his umbilical cord wrapped around his neck twice and did not receive his first heartbeat for 11 minutes and was on the vent for 3.5 weeks. Gaines is now 2 years old and is able to feed himself, is walking with the assistance of a kaye walker, and is trying to use his words to let us all know what is on his mind!

Some challenges Gaines faces are his hamstrings and heel cords are very tight which limits his ability to walk or stand without using an assistive device at this time. Gaines’ Intensive Therapy program focused on creating ways to actively stretch his tight legs and practice becoming more independent with walking, standing, reaching for toys, cruising furniture, and all of the natural tasks a 2 year old would perform. He is participating in speech, occupational, and physical therapy which are each working hard to maximize their time to reach improvement holistically.

Gaines has never been a fan of stretching, so therapy has worked to implement activities that promote active lengthening of his lower extremity muscles. One of Gaines’ therapists John-Wesley Reed, PTA said, “Gaines allowed me to stretch him and even take measurements which showed that his range of motion improved in only a few days!”

“Gaines’ right hand use has improved and he has decreased emotional reactivity to tactile stimuli to his hands”, reports Patchez Long, LOTR. During his Intensive Therapy session, Ashley Hodge, SLP noted that “Gaines has been trying new textures of food and learned to break large pieces into smaller, safer bites when eating.”

One of the best rewards as therapists, is seeing patients’ progress carry over at home. Gaines’ mom Jill says, “coming daily for a prolonged time provides repetition of what he needs to do in order to be more successful, and it also allows his therapy team be able to really see what he needs.” Jill has noticed that, “he talks more, is less fearful transitioning objects and does things in order with a process.”

Riley has been a patient at MMPT for over a year now for speech, occupational, and physical therapy. Riley is a beautiful young girl whose smile and flowing locks radiate and draw everyone near to her. Riley has such a beautiful mind in which those around her are always very anxious to see what it holds. Riley’s Intensive Therapy program focused on decreased communication, limited diet, decreased body awareness, tactile defensiveness, and helping her become more independent with dressing and other activities of daily living. Speech therapy focused on expressive communication, including making requests for things and actions she wants or needs when given choices, and helping her become more independent with initiating activities.

With her big beautiful blue eyes, Riley lights up every room that she comes into and immediately brings joy to those who interact with her. Riley’s OT, Patchez Long has seen improvements recently, “Riley has increased her communication skills using her Communication Application on her iPad.”

“Riley is following directions much better and is now making choices when given different options of what activity she would like to participate in” says Ashley Hodge, SLP.

Since Riley has started attending therapy, her mother has seen multiple improvements at home. “She said ‘I love you’ while jumping on the trampoline, she is doing much better in crowds and meeting new people, and she will now walk in parking lots and play in the sand and even dig her toes in,” says Brittney.

Kelsey is another wonderful face we have had the opportunity to work with the past 2 years and has truly impacted each of us. At 27 1/2 weeks old, Kelsey entered this world and was in the NICU for 3 months. Despite her small size, Kelsey instantly brought a bright personality like none other to light the lives of all who surround her. Kelsey began the Intensive Therapy program the last week of January and is already making great strides.

Some tasks that Kelsey experiences difficulty with are being able to sit and walk independently, support self using each arm, feeding and dressing independently, and being able to grasp objects with right hand.

With the support of her family and therapy team, Kelsey has proved to be a child that desires to be as functional as she can and is working diligently every day to reach her goals.

“Intense physical therapy will focus on strengthening and stabilizing major muscle groups and core strength to help with functional mobility in order to help her become more independent and prepare her for the school setting” states Abby Comeaux, PT. Kelsey is being seen by PT and OT during her Intensive Therapy session, which work together as a team to increase her independence and prepare her for the milestones in her near future.

“Kelsey was able to maintain ring sitting position while playing for almost 45 minutes today when she could only hold the posture for 3-4 seconds initially,” says Abby Comeaux, PT.

“Her sitting balance has improved and she is using her right arm to support her more,” states Amber Bridges, LCOTA.

Katie Trichell, LCOTA has noticed that “her head is more in midline recently and she has been sitting independently in the past few days.”

It is hard to believe that it is only February and we are already seeing so many of our patients learn new skills and reach their goals daily. Please keep us in your thoughts and prayers this year as we maximize ourselves personally and professionally and challenge you to do the same! Have a blessed day!

If you have any further questions regarding the Intensive Therapy program or any other services offered at MMPT, please feel free to contact us at any time and we will be happy to assist you!


“Joyfully use our gifts to brighten the lives of others”


West Monroe





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