The NACD Neurodevelopmental Approach to Human Development
The National Association for Child Development, under the direction of founder Robert J. Doman Jr., has, over its twenty-nine years of existence and work with over 30,000 clients, developed a unique and effective view of and approach to enhancing the development and function of children and adults. Because the fields of education and health care have become more and more compartmentalized in recent years, and treatment approaches are driven more by symptom and label rather than by cause, their methods often fail to serve the uniqueness and totality of the individual.
NACD has created an approach to human development, the achievement of human potential, and the remediation of developmental, educational, and neurological problems that is based upon the gestalt of the individual. Our Neurodevelopmental Approach utilizes a neurologically-based, individually targeted, eclectic treatment methodology. The efficacy of NACD's Neurodevelopmental Perspective has been demonstrated with over 30,000 clients—from infant to geriatric—whose function has ranged from comatose to gifted. The NACD Neurodevelopmental Approach is based on the following model:
A Gestalt Perspective
The profile of function and determination of treatment is based upon the gestalt of the client. The gestalt perspective involves perceiving the individual and his function as in integrated whole, more than a summation of his or her parts.
Identification of Neurological and Developmental Cause
Global areas of concern are identified, followed by a profile to determine the underlying neurological/developmental causes or inefficiencies producing the functional problem or problems.
Acceleration of Neurological and Educational Function
Intervention is based upon both the acceleration of typical neurological development and education as well as the remediation of abnormal developmental patterns. Recognition and utilization of neural plasticity. The basic structure of the intervention is dictated by an appreciation of neural plasticity and the need for organized specific input, which is provided with the necessary frequency, intensity, and duration required to produce progressive change.
Validation and Empowerment of Parents
The traditional delivery system for therapeutic intervention involves direct interaction between the client and the therapist once or twice a week. This level of interaction is inconsistent with neurological need. In order to provide optimal input in terms of both frequency and sensitivity, it is necessary to utilize people who can provide significant daily interaction and people who know the client the best. This is most often accomplished by utilizing parents, other family members, and/or aides. Given the necessary training and support, these individuals can implement the vast majority of treatment plans.
At NACD, lack of function or development is not perceived as a lack of potential. Each individual is evaluated and provided with opportunities based on a perception of unlimited potential.
TDI Targeted Developmental Intervention™
Understanding that the more specific the input is, the more targeted and effective the intervention will be, the effort is made to incorporate as many valid treatment techniques as possible, providing a truly eclectic model. Treatment techniques are incorporated, developed, modified, and discarded based upon their efficacy or lack thereof.
Interrelationship Between Neurological and Physiological Function
The relationship between neurological and physiological function is synergistic. A comprehensive treatment approach must address both factors as part of the gestalt.
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