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Chapter 22: Stephen—Shaken Baby Syndrome

Naomi Scott University of North Texas Press PDF

Chapter Twenty-Two

Stephen—Shaken Baby Syndrome

“Without riding I don’t think Stephen would be walking with a walker now,” nurse Roxann Martin-White said. “People need to know the damage that shaking a baby can do.”

Stephen White is a lucky seven-year-old. Yes, he has endured appalling trauma in his short life and has serious medical problems. Still he is lucky, because he can call Roxann and Joe White his parents.

After bringing up their own four children, the Whites began caring for other youngsters, many of whom came to them with special needs. The couple has adopted six of them. Those who volunteer work a few hours, then we can return to our home. The Whites have made a commitment, which requires twenty-four hours a day. I can’t think of sufficient words to express my admiration for them. Surely countless others the world over are similarly committed, and I am in awe of them all.

Stephen entered the Whites’ lives shortly before his fourth birthday.

“He didn’t crawl, or scoot along on his bottom like he does now,” Martin-White said. “All he could do was roll over. He couldn’t talk, except for a couple of words, and he had no communication skills. He was withdrawn, very quiet.”

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Sample List of Studies

Bertoti, Delores B. (1991). Effect of Therapeutic Horseback Riding on Extremity Weightbearing in a Child with Hemiplegic Cerebral Palsy:

A Case Report as an Example of Clinical Research. Pediatric Physical

Therapy, 3(4), 219-222.

Bertoti, Delores B. (1988). Effect of Therapeutic Horseback Riding on Children with Cerebral Palsy. Physical Therapy, 68(10), 1505-1512.

Biery, Martha J., and Kauffman, Nancy (1989). Effects of Therapeutic Horseback Riding on Balance. Adapted Physical Activity Quarterly,

6(3), 221-229.

Bizub, Al, Joy, A., and Davidson, L. (2003). It’s Like Being in Another World: Demonstrating the Benefits of Therapeutic Horseback Riding for Individuals with Psychiatric Disability. Psychiatric Rehabilitation

Journal, 26(4), 377-384.

Bliss, B. (1997). Complementary Therapies—Therapeutic Horseback

Riding? RN, 60(10), 69-70.

Bouffard, Marcel (1990). Movement Problem Solutions by Educable

Mentally Handicapped Individuals. Adapted Physical Activity Quarterly,

7(2), 183-197.

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Chapter 5: Owners, Community, and Volunteers

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Chapter Five

Owners, Community, and Volunteers

Instructors and therapists conduct the actual sessions but facilities, and a lot of support, are also necessary.

A good example of a NARHA center is Rocky Top Therapy Center, established in 1990 by Doug and Vivian Newton, at their Rocky Top

Ranch, Keller, Texas. The center has achieved NARHA premier accredited status, and has grown to annually serve two hundred physically, mentally, or emotionally challenged individuals.

“We struggled to get started,” Doug recalls. “Therapeutic riding was not widely known, to the disabled, or to the community at large, and there were few instructors in the country. We were busy getting educated on the process, giving speeches to anyone who would listen, raising the necessary dollars to make our programs possible, and improving our facilities to accommodate those with special needs. Now we are finding that keeping up with growth is an even greater challenge. Because of our successes, demands for expansion are ever increasing.”

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Chapter 27: Nick—Down Syndrome

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Chapter Twenty-Seven

Nick—Down Syndrome

At a Special Olympics horse show, thirteen-year-old Nick Hogan, a veteran of many years in the saddle, walked around eating a bag of French fries and visiting folks along the shedrow. Several people teasingly asked him for one of his fries, and he would turn away, protecting his snack. As he walked up to me, he fished out a long, shiny fry, dripping with catsup, and extended it toward me. Nick is somewhat limited in his verbal skills, but smiling, he offered the token. His mother, Sandy Hogan, laughed.

“You should feel honored. He doesn’t share his fries with just anyone.”

Well, I absolutely did. I took that piece of potato from him and ate it, trying not to imagine where his fingers might have been as he played around the horse barn.

Nick has Down Syndrome and a spunky, compelling personality that gets him a lot of hugs—and sometimes, sent to “time out.” Horseback riding is his primary source of exercise, socializing, and self-esteem, while it also helps to teach him communication skills and discipline.

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GLOSSARY ing the people, animals, nature, and situations therein, emphasizing emotional, mental, social, physical, and spiritual well-being.

Frog (horse anatomy): Wedge-shaped substance in the sole of the hoof which acts as a cushion.

Gerontology: The scientific study of the process and problems of aging.

Hackamore: Circular device fitting around a horse’s muzzle, an alternative to a metal bit in his mouth, by which the rider communicates signals.

Half-halt: With a rider mounted, the horse is slowed almost to a stop, and then abruptly urged back to normal speed.

Harrington Rod Insertion: A procedure to stabilize the spine by fusing together two or more vertebrae, using either metal (Harrington) rods or bone grafts.

Hemispherectomy: Excision of one cerebral hemisphere, undertaken due to intractable (not adequately controlled by medication) epilepsy, and other cerebral conditions.

Hippotherapy: From the Greek word for horse, hippos, literally meaning therapy with the aid of a horse.

Infantile Spasms: Brief (typically one to five seconds) seizures occurring in clusters of two to one hundred at a time, with possibly dozens of episodes per day.

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