Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Plateaus Are Imaginary

"Two steps forward" is progression. A "step back" is a lull in development.

Long ago in my Master's training program, there was a guest lecturer. She was a therapist. She said when you reach a stall in development, a plateau, you work through it. Now this was a program for early intervention in special education. I didn't know the practice in some physical therapy was to stop if there was a lull in attaining developmental skills. Special education teachers can be working with the same student for years. There may be lulls in the student's development, but that's what makes it "special." A teacher doesn't quit working with a student because he or she doesn't learn.

Although development is slow, the student "gets it" eventually, so
metimes years later (the particular task worked on). Gosh, there probably was a lull at that moment in time when started, but it wasn't forever. The same can happen in brain injury. Prime example...me. My developmental skill progression was slow. Sure I had a lull in development at the beginning of my brain injury. "No Progress" is determined. I was placed with the vegetative. That is how I remain today.

Years later I am writing this. It wasn't "Wham! She can write." It's taken many years and I use accessibility features on the computer. I was published in 2009, http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/aha/strokeconnection_20090708/index.php#/10/OnePage. My accident  was in 2002. There's just a lull right there in dates. I don't know of any rehab that lasts 9 years. A special ed teacher would last that long, though, and that is what I used to do. That's what I did when therapy ran out. No therapist showed me how to type. Accessibility is an area I used to cover. I've just applied techniques to myself.

Let's see what this document says http://braininjuryknow.blogspot.com/2013/04/getting-there.html. I directly quote an article,

"The nerve fibers from the cells were severed, but the cells themselves remained intact." Nerve cells that have not died can form new connections. It goes on to say, "The new research suggests that instead of the sudden recovery Wallis seemed to make when he began speaking and moving three years ago, he actually may have been slowly recovering all along, as nerves in his brain formed new connections at a glacial pace until enough were present to make a network."  http://usatoday30.usatoday.com/news/health/2006-07-03-brain-rewired_x.htm        

This thing was written a few years ago. How can anyone without that proper equipment determine there will be "No Progress"? A person would have to be able to see "nerve fibers from the cells." My eyes aren't that good, so I can't. From the way it read, this wasn't a regular MRI either. This was a few years ago, so I'm sure the technology is more widely available now. Still, though, to the naked eye, progress can't be determined.

I go on to reassure that rewiring can't be seen and may take years. With this research available then, why is it that people are still being told there will be no progress? The "plateau" isn't really there.

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