Glossary

  • Abduction
    Movement of a limb outwards, away from the body.
  • Absence Seizure
    Generalized seizure that is most common in children. Absence seizures begin and end within a few seconds and involve a lapse in consciousness with a blank stare and may be accompanied by rapid eye blinking or chewing movements.
  • Active Motion
    Joint movement carried out by the patient.
  • Activities of Daily Living (ADL)
    Tasks that people participate in on daily bases that are necessary for fulfilling meaningful life goals (e.g. eating, bathing, dressing, toileting, etc.).
  • Acuity
    The sharpness of a particular sense, such as hearing or sight.
  • Adaptive Response
    An action in which the individual responds successfully to an environmental demand. Adaptive responses require good sensory integration and further the sensory integrative process.
  • Adduction
    Movement of a limb inwards, toward the body.
  • Adeli Suit
    A rehabilitation tool that creates an external framework of elastic bands to add support, enhance posture, and improve alignment, strength, and confidence of movement.
  • Alternative school
    An educational setting designed to accommodate educational, behavioral, and/or medical needs of children and adolescents that cannot be adequately addressed in a traditional school environment.
  • Ambulatory
    Walking or able to walk.
  • Anomaly
    A deviation from that which is considered typical.
  • Aphasia
    Either partial or total loss of the ability to communicate verbally or using written words
  • Apraxia
    A neurological condition characterized by the inability to carry out purposeful movements, despite having the physical capacity and willingness to do so.
  • Aquatic Therapy
    The exercising of muscle groups underwater using buoyancy, water resistance, turbulence and warmth to aid in increasing ease of movement, strength, coordination, and balance.
  • Arousal
    A state of the nervous system that describes how alert someone feels. To attend, concentrate, and perform tasks according to situational demands, the nervous system must be in an optimal state of alertness for the particular task.
  • Articulation
    The production of speech sounds through the use of jaw, face, and mouth movements.
  • Assessment
    Ongoing procedures used by qualified professionals throughout a child’s early intervention experience to identify their unique needs.
  • Assistive Technology Devices
    Any item, piece of equipment, or product system used to increase, maintain or improve a child’s ability to do things.
  • Asymmetrical Tonic Reflex
    A primitive reflex that is present from birth but should disappear by six months of age. When the infant is lying on their back with their head turned to one side, the arm and leg on the side to which the head is turned should straighten, and the arm and leg on the opposite side should bend.
  • Asymmetry
    One side of the body is different from the other; unequal.
  • Ataxia
    Lack of coordination and unsteadiness due to the brain’s failure to regulate the body’s posture and the strength and direction of limb movements.
  • Athetosis
    The inability to coordinate muscular activity during voluntary movements; involuntary writhing, repetitive movements, and irregular posture.
  • Atrophy
    A wasting away or reduction in the size of a muscle or a nerve.
  • Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD)
    A childhood condition characterized by a persistent pattern of impulsiveness, a short attention span, and in some cases hyperactivity. ADD interferes with academic, occupational, and social performance.
  • Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)
    A condition characterized by impaired or diminished attention, impulsivity, and hyperactivity most commonly seen in children and teens. ADHD manifests itself as excessive movement, irritability, immaturity, inability to concentrate or control impulses and affects learning and skill acquisition.
  • Audiometer
    Any instrument for testing hearing.
  • Auditory
    Pertaining to the sense of hearing.
  • Auditory Association
    The ability to associate spoken words in a meaningful fashion.
  • Auditory Closure
    The ability to recognize a whole message when only a portion is heard.
  • Auditory Memory
    The ability to remember words and sounds.