Before anything else, we would like to welcome you to Sensational Kids! Since you are currently reading this entry, you have probably already spoken to one of our clinical administrators to book your initial appointment. Whether it is with an occupational therapist, speech therapist, music therapist or psychologist, first appointments are always about getting to know you and your child!
To ensure that we all breeze through this initial meeting and for you to get the most out of it, we have listed down a few things that you need to know about your first visit.
- You will be filling out a child waiver form which could take 5-10 minutes.
Before you meet your therapist, our receptionist will ask you to complete a waiver form where you need to jot down pertinent information about you and your child. It also details clinic policies and asks for your consent on important matters. We strongly suggest that you come to the clinic at least 5 minutes before your scheduled appointment so it does not consume any of your initial session time.
- Appointments are normally 50 minutes long.
It sounds short, doesn’t it? But, you will be surprised at how much you, your child and your therapist can actually do and discuss within this period. However, there are special cases when sessions are longer than that. This will be discussed with you by your therapist.
For occupational therapy and speech therapy initial appointments, parents are encouraged to bring their child along with them. OTs and STs use this time not only for parent interview but also for clinical observations and/or formal/informal assessments with your child. On the contrary, psychology initial appointments are for parent/s only.
- There will be lots of questions!
First appointments are aimed at knowing you and your child better. Therefore, your therapist will be asking lots of questions about your child’s medical and developmental history, home and school behaviours, participation in different activities, and more. If your child has had assessments done previously, kindly bring the reports with you as your therapists will surely inquire about the results of these tests.
- You are encouraged to ask questions, too.
Your therapist could be using jargon which you may not be familiar with – feel free to ask for more information if anything is complex or unclear. To complement your discussion, your therapist can also print out info sheets for you to take home.
First meetings are the best time to ask your therapist about future sessions. Questions we often hear are – “Do you want me to join the therapy session or do I wait outside?” “What things can we do at home until our next appointment?” “Is a home/school visit possible?”
- You will be working with your therapist on coming up with a plan.
Depending on what has been accomplished that day, your therapist may recommend a second meeting to complete assessments. Goal-setting is also another point of discussion between you and your therapist. If you have any concerns about schedule, frequency of sessions or financial plans, it is recommended that you inform your therapist about them so you can jointly design a plan that will work best for you and your child.
We look forward to seeing you at our Ormond or Moonee Ponds clinics!