Thursday, October 24, 2013

Therapy Task Ideas for Orientation

This post is a continuation of the series of cognitive therapy ideas taken from a student project by Janelle Barrett (who is not a student anymore!). These are ideas gathered from several SLPs and students.  Comment and let us know what you do for orientation!

  • O-Log worksheet.  Do this before showing them their calendar and memory aides. (This is a standardized little task with 10 questions.  They are worth up to 3 points per question for a total of 30 points.  Practice "calendaring"
    • Have the pt. fill out a blank calendar (numbering the days, labeling the month)
    • Have the pt. cross out days that have past
    • Write all holidays and important upcoming family events and birthdays
    • Write all significant hospital-related days (surgeries, accidents, date of admission to Rehab, discharge date, last day of therapies, etc.)
    • Have the patient answer questions (e.g., "According to your calendar, how long have you been here in the hospital?  In Rehab?  How much longer will you be here?  How long until the next holiday?  How long will your total Rehab stay be?") 
    • Jot down up-coming appointments or to-do's (e.g., Write a birthday note to Julie before Friday.)
    • I like to use a small post-it sticky on "today's date" if the patient is struggling each day to find it.  Each morning we practice moving the sticky and crossing off the previous day.
  • Discuss different ways to find orientation info (environmental cues, calendars, newspapers, etc.)
    • Have the patient go on a walk and find ways to answer orientation questions (Where are we?  Where could you go to find the answer?)
  • Have a daily log book
    • Have them write down what the patient did each session, who was there, any other significant events, visitors, the patient's thoughts and feelings.
    • Have the patient review past entries each day to remind them of what's going on and who has been around.  
  • Practice day planner use, including to-dos, etc. 
    • Or for tech-savvy patients and teens, we work on electronic planners, calendar apps, etc.
  • Practice using alarms (cell phone alarm to remind them to take pills, etc.)
  • I'll put an enormous poster-sized calendar or orientation poster at bedside if needed.  Sometimes I'll have the patient put it together with me as part of therapy.
What other comments do you have?  Leave me some fresh ideas in your comments!

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