We had been told since the day Sam started school that “something was a problem,” but no teacher could actually put their finger on it. Lots of suggestions about why were made, including the fact that he was an August baby!
Finally, frustrated with the lack of progress, we had Sam privately assessed and we were given the diagnosis dyspraxia and dysgraphia. Although we appreciated the effects this had on his handwriting, we were unaware of the overall effects dyspraxia would have on his daily life – his general organisational skills, his ability to concentrate or follow multiple instructions to name a few, but, most importantly, the emotional rollercoaster.
While researching Dyspraxia we came across David Mulhall’s website. Reading the information on the screen rang a lot of bells for me and we decided bring Sam to be assessed. As a physiotherapist, I knew a lot of the tests and reflexes that David tested. However, I had not realised the impact these “stuck” reflexes had on Sam. As David explained, so many pieces of the puzzle that is dyspraxia made sense – from his swimming stroke through to his distractability in class.
We began treatment with the brushing technique in February 2006. The response was immediate. In the first month we had an initial extreme reaction in Sam’s behaviour for a few days, which was quite startling. Then once this settled down, progress was immediately apparent. The main changes were in his handwriting and emotional reactions (they became less extreme). Gradually over the months more subtle changes were apparent. We experienced a slight setback for a few days when we first changed the brushing techniques. And a couple of times we had to ease off and slow down the treatment. However, progress was steady.
Now 16 months after we started, Sam is doing really well, his reflexes appropriately in place. And he is developing into them. He is a happy well-adjusted boy, and emotionally well-balanced. He still has some concentration and task completion issues. I really do believe these will continue to improve as he catches up with his development.
In September, Sam starts at senior school. We feel strongly that having followed the David Mulhall regime we have given Sam the best start he could have had. My advice to anyone reading this would be definitely give it a try and to follow the regime to the letter (there were times when we did not brush for a couple of days and we definitely saw a slowdown in his progress).
Sam’s mother, July 2007