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A Critical Link in Sensory Integration

Jean Ayres' groundbreaking work in the field of sensory integration brought to light the critical importance of integrating information from our senses for the organization of movement, learning, and behavior. A primary focus of sensory integrative treatment is to enhance sensory processing through the vestibular, proprioceptive, and tactile senses to facilitate self-generated, goal-directed activity.

Recent clinical practice demonstrates the efficacy of incorporating sound into sensory integrative treatment strategies. In fact, many experts agree that the auditory system is a critical link in sensory integration theory. Therapeutic Listening® is an innovative program for providing high quality auditory input within the context of sensory integrative treament.


Listening is a Sensory Integrative Experience

Sensory integration is the ability to organize sensory input from the body and the environment and to incorporate it adaptively in meaningful occupations. In everyday listening we are doing just that attending selectively to auditory information and integrating it with other salient sensory data.

Listening is a voluntary, survivalrelated, whole brain, and whole body process. The survival of an animal living in the wild depends on its ability to listen and monitor and then actively respond to changes in the environment. Because of its importance in survival, Ayres acknowledged that the processing of sound could be classified as one of the 'primal forms of sensory integration'.


What is Therapeutic Listening?

Therapeutic Listening (TL) is an expansion of Sensory Integration. It is an auditory intervention that uses the organized sound patterns inherent in music to impact all levels of the nervous system. Auditory information from Therapeutic Listening CDs provides direct input to both the vestibular and the auditory portions of the vestibular-cochlear continuum. The emphasis of TL is on blending sound intervention strategies with vestibulo-proprioceptive, core development, and breath activities so as to sustain grounding and centering of the body and mind in space and time. Providing these postural, movement, and respiratory activities as part of the TL program is critical.

Therapeutic Listening utilizes numerous CDs that vary in musical style, types of filtering, and level of complexity. The music on Therapeutic Listening CDs is electronically altered to elicit the orienting response which sets up the body for sustained attention and active listening.


For more information please consult the Vital Links website or download an introduction pdf .

Copyright © 2002-2011, Melanne Maddalene!