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The Brain Clock: It is possible to fine-tune the human brain clock

The Brain Clock: It is possible to fine-tune the human brain clock

In this fourth installment of my introduction as an IM-Home blogger, I share one more piece of the puzzle that convinced me that brain clock-based interventions hold considerable promise. 

In my first post I reported how my scientific skepticism initially kept me arms-length from an IM school-based study, the positive results which stimulated my subsequent search for scientific and theoretical research to explain the IM effect.  This search resulted in the Brain Clock blog and the conclusion that synchronized metronome tapping and other rhythm-based interventions must be improving a central “jack-of-all-trades” cognitive mechanism (the topic of my second post).  The recent IM-Home “Sound of Music” post, which was abstracted from a post at the Brain Clock blog, featured the link between rhythm-based music therapies and recovery from brain injury, in the case for Congresswoman Gabby Giffords.

Research evidence that continued to “close the door” on my initial IM skepticism, and which now has me blogging at the Brain Clock and the IM-Home blogs and, more recently, has me near completion of the 15th session of my first personalized IM-Home...

Listen to the sound of Hope! Thanks to Rosie O’Donnell many parents are!

 

Auditory processing disorder is little known and notorious for being misdiagnosed. The symptoms of ADHD include problems with paying attention, following directions, low academic performance, behavioral problems, and poor reading and vocabulary; which are often misdiagnosed for ADHD or Autism. Read Rosie’s full story on the NY Times.

Many IM providers that are SLPs or Audiologist use IM or IM-Home to help patients process sound more efficiently.

Have you read our CAPD Research by Dr. Joel Etra? The scan C revealed significant gains in dichotic listening from going through IM-training.

The Sound of Music

Do you remember Congresswoman Gabby Giffords? Well in the 10 months since a bullet left her in critical condition and suffering from aphasia—the inability to speak- Mrs. Giffords is now singing thanks to music therapy!

I hope I didn’t brain my damage…

I hope I didn’t brain my damage…

In an article written in Discovery Fitness & Health, it is explained that the brain has the ability to re-generate connections between neurons. Essentially by creating new pathways between healthy areas of the brain and those affected by the injury, the brain learns to operate those affected tasks in other healthy areas; a process called neuroplasticity, which is essentially the ability of the brain to change structurally and functionally. It is in this area that Interactive Metronome®(IM) can help those who have suffered from a brain injury or stroke get back the skills they have lost as a result of their trauma.

IM is an assessment and treatment tool that is based on rhythm and timing. The patient performs a suite of technical movements to a constant beat that are specific to their diagnosis and is overseen by an IM specialist, the program is modified to meet each individual needs for maximum outcomes. These exercises stimulate the brain to make connections to healthy areas so it can improve the ones affected.

Whether it’s a small trauma or a severe injury, the brain has the ability to learn new connections; and while brain damage is scary for most people, there are ways to recover from it.

Visit our success stories page...

Patrick becomes more attentive with IM

Collette is the mother of 10-year-old Patrick, who is diagnosed with Asperger’s and anxiety. Patrick’s attention and focus was a major issue for him at school and after doing IM training at one of our certified clinics he started doing better at school and became more alert. They are now signing up to do IM-Home. Watch the video and listen to the full story….

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Giving thanks for all that is on the Spectrum

We are really exited for Thanksgiving this year as you might be also. Aside from the hectic travel that usually accompanies this holiday and the stories about underdone or overdone turkeys, it’s a great family holiday and we at Interactive Metronome® want to give you tips that could prepare you for your thanksgiving dinner...

The Brain Clock: The brain clock as a “jack-of-all-trades” brain mechanism that can be fine-tuned to improve human performance

The Brain Clock:  The brain clock as a “jack-of-all-trades” brain mechanism that can be fine-tuned to improve human performance

In my inaugural IM-Home blog post (Brain Clock: My journey to understand the science of mental timing interventions), I concluded with the following statement:

I am now convinced that the IM-effect is impacting a fundamental and critical cognitive mechanism (or set of mechanisms) involved in a wide array of human cognitive and motor performance domains.”

Cognitive and intelligence researchers have long sought for (and argued about) the “holy grail”of intelligence—an underlying core essence or mechanism that plays a role in most all intellectual and human performance situations.  It is typically referred to as g, or general intelligence.   The general consensus touches on the concept of neural efficiency.  Such a general mechanism or process is considered a domain-general cognitive mechanism as it works across multiple domains of human ability, or in other words...if you improve this one area of ability, it in turn improves several areas of ability in the same person like cognitive skills (focus, attention, memory), speech/language abilities (articulation, auditory processing, reading), and motor skills (coordination, gait, balance).   It works across multiple domains of human ability.  Some have referred to such general mechanisms...

Timing drives Self Esteem & Coordination for CP child

 

Some children with cerebral palsy have great difficulty with coordination and timing. They may have difficulty with their fine motor skills, catching a ball or walking smoothly. In watching these wonderful kids over the years, I have noticed 2 things, (1) that their timing can be off when they try to perform coordinated tasks. For example when they work on their ball skills they close their hands too early or too late to catch/bounce the ball and (2) that they sometimes lack self confidence in their physical skills making them less likely to practice them. Many of these kids have been in therapy for their entire life, and then when they reach 10, 11, 12 years old they grow tired and weary of the typical weekly sessions of practicing the skills themselves. While practice of skills is definitely necessary, I think we are learning to go a step further to address the underlying issues of timing and coordination with the Interactive Metronome program. 

One of our earliest Success stories with IM-Home

When we at Interactive Metronome announced that we were going to do Beta testing for IM-Home, we had a ton of IM therapists beating down our doors to be a part of it. The call was for IM Providers and they were supposed to pick their own patients for the test, but a mom of a child with PDD heard about our product and inquired about it for her son. I wasn't expecting that a patient would approach us for the testing, but I thought- "why not?" So I set her up with one of our virtual therapists, April Christopherson, OTR/L. The family lived in California and April was based on Colorado, so they never saw each other in-person, but they did use Skype and communicated via e-mail and phone. "James" made some great gains over the testing period and she was excited to share her story with us. This was the first time that we realized a completely virtual model could work. We could not extend our reach and not expect clients to come to the client 3-4 times a week! See the mom tell you her experience below

 

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Build a Foundation: Learn to Focus

Build a Foundation: Learn to Focus

There are so many children diagnosed with ADD and ADHD these days. Some kids are struggling to pay attention in class or are labeled as the class clowns or troublemakers at school or other organized events. Whether it be a hyperactivity or an inattention to task, could there be a common thread that was missing when we evaluated these children? We utilized standardized tools such as the Bruininks, VMI ,WOLD and Jebsen. They all tended to score below their same aged peers on these tests, handwriting was poor and sometimes it just didn’t seem like they heard what you were telling them.

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