Music Therapy, Sensory Integration and the Autistic Child by Dorita S. Berger

By Dorita S. Berger

First released in 2002. Routledge is an imprint of Taylor & Francis, an informa corporation.

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Extra info for Music Therapy, Sensory Integration and the Autistic Child

Sample text

Permanent memory may also have some sort of abstract code which allows for generalization and association of information and responses. Much is still unknown about the cortical, higher levels of brain function. Opening the gates to learning – the neo-cortex In dealing with issues of sensory integration as it appears in the autistic spectrum, it is necessary to grasp elements of brain function and how sensory disorganization can contribute to a lack of well-being. Four hundred and ninety-five million years before the neo-cortex evolved to enable cognitive function, animals survived.

This is done without “cognitive” input; it happens on the instinctive level. The brain does not involve intellectual processing, which takes too much time! Before a being knows what’s happening, or even that something is happening, the heart is already pounding, and sweat, adrenalin and cortisol are gushing into the system, along with a variety of other chemical stimulants (catecholamines) supporting the fight-or-flight response. Here is a simple example of this fear-induced instinct. You are listening to a lecture and suddenly your name is called.

Reliability and repetition are ingredients ASPECTS OF AUTISM 33 inherent in animal adaptation to environmental forces. The central differ­ ence between typical and atypical requirements regarding sameness, ritual, and repetition, is the inability of the atypical system to modulate ade­ quately and efficiently when things do not adhere to similar routines. In the first case, the system adjusts quickly while in the latter more time and pro­ cessing is required in order to reformulate functional responses.

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