Joseph's Success Story:

Emotional, Behavioral & Relational

 

Student Information

Name: Joseph*

*actual name replaced

Gender: Male

 

Age: 12

Diagnoses:

  • Attention-Deficit-Hyperactivity Disorder Combined Type

  • Anxiety

  • Oppositional Defiance Disorder

  • Dyslexia

  • Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

  • Emotional Behavioral Disorder

Evaluation Dates: February 2019 & November 2019

Initial Functional Challenges: Joseph entered Jacob's Ladder exhibiting heightened anxiety causing fight or flight responses regularly. He was unable to manage stress during social experiences and under typical academic expectations. He was overly anxious and attached to his parents, with no tolerance for independence. 

 

Joseph's Individualized Plan

Based on Joseph’s evaluation, we created an individualized model of care to help Joseph develop a better-connected brain and reach the following emotional-behavioral goals.

Goal #1

 

Anxiety & Depression: Joseph learns and practices the tools outlined in Zones of Regulation curriculum and the Facing Your Feelings Dialectical Behavior Therapy Module in order to better understand his emotions in the moment

Behaviors Measured Daily

 

1. Participates in problem-solving situations by asking opinions of peers

 

2. Self-monitors tone and body language when engaging with others

 

3. Manages emotions by actively pausing and/or taking resets

Goal #2

 

Thought Problems: Joseph embraces the learning process in order to stay present rather than disengage in moments of perceived failure

Behaviors Measured Daily

 

1. Able to move past topic of high interest

 

2. Stays on appropriate topic

 

3. Utilizes reset tool when “locked” in thought process

Goal #3

 

Aggressive Behavior: Joseph manages physical manifestations of emotional extremes

 

Behaviors Measured Daily

1. Maintains internal rather than external focus

2. Maintains mind-body connection to avoid emotional outbursts in yellow zone moments

3. Gives concerted effort in less preferred tasks

 

What Joseph's Parents Experienced

"There is a direct line that showed in his brain map from his fear center to his speech center – it is a direct line that says when you are under stress, shut down. We have told people this for years and no one believed us, they thought it was intentional and now we have scientific evidence."

- Joseph's Parents

 

Joseph’s Academic Gains Over 9 Months  

Our Whole-Brain Model of Care is built around the framework that a strong neurodevelopmental foundation is necessary to excel in academics. Joseph put in the hard work of developing a strong neurodevelopmental foundation and experiencied terrific academic gains.

Joseph’s Functional Gains Over 9 Months

As Joseph developed the proper connections between areas in his brain, he experienced tremendous gains in his emotional, behavioral, and relational functioning. 

Starting at Jacob's Ladder

1. Heightened anxiety levels that elicited a fight-or-flight response as his typical baseline

2. No observable distress tolerance during social experiences or under typical academic expectations

3. Overly anxious and attached to his parents, showing little tolerance for being independent

9 Months Later

1. Dramatic decrease in anxiety and an increase in self-regulation abilities – his baseline response is no longer fight-or-flight

 

2. Tolerates academic and social expectations, has friends, and has accomplished significant academic gains

3.  Developed independence and a healthy autonomy from parents

 

How Joseph's Brain Changed Over 9 Months

By utilizing a QEEG brain map, we were able to identify and measure where communication flow was lacking in Joseph's brain (hypo coherence) or where communication flow was locked and/or was overly-used in Joseph's brain (hyper coherence).

 

We identified Joseph's top 10 hypo coherent connections and top 10 hyper coherent connections. Based on the regions of the brain that were struggling to communicate, it became clear why he was experiencing emotional, behavioral, and relational challenges.

 

Over 9 months, specific activities were implemented in his individualized model of care to normalize these connections. Below is an example of two connection improvements.  

 

Example #1 of Joseph's Brain Improvement

Communication flow between Joseph's Orbital Frontal Association Cortex and Anterior Cingulate Gyrus was lacking by -3.40 standard deviations from a normalized connection.

 

Through Joseph's individualized model of care, activities were implemented that improved his communication flow to -1.16 standard deviations from a normalized connection.

Orbital Frontal Association Cortex (Right)

  • Making inferences of other people

  • Modulation of affect, empathy, consequences of actions, self-expression, willpower

  • Planning and executing complicated goal-directed behavior

Anterior Cingulate Gyrus​ (Right)

  • Moral reasoning

  • Evaluates emotional words

  • Influences the brainstem, the amygdala, and insula – for mood and affect

Example #2 of Joseph's Brain Improvement

Communication flow between Joseph's Anterior Cingular Gyrus and Temporal Gyrus was locked and/or overly-used by +3.13 standard deviations from a normalized connection.

 

Through Joseph's individualized model of care, activities were implemented that improved his communication flow to +0.51 standard deviations from a normalized connection.

Anterior Cingulate Gyrus (Right)

  • Hub of emotional brain

  • Mood and mood swings

  • Executive network functions including inductive and deductive reasoning

Temporal Gyrus​ (Right)

  • Experiencing emotional stimuli – fear and threat

  • Moral judgements

  • Mood regulation

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