Friday, November 11, 2016

Reduced sensation

Allie with one of her kindergarten friends




Allie and I were shopping yesterday for this year's holiday drive sponsored family, and trying to decide which fuzzy blankets were the coziest.  Allie was riding in the cart as I pushed her from blanket to blanket so she could test which was the softest.  I parked her by one and she said something along the lines of "I need to be closer because just Righty can feel it from here."  I asked why it wasn't good enough for just Righty to touch it, and she gave a really interesting reply.  She said that her right hand can feel that the blanket is squishy but not that it is soft. 

Way back when Allie was first diagnosed, we were told that reduced sensation in her affected side is common. We were instructed to get brushes and vibrating toys to rub on her right side to increase sensation and awareness. (Side note, just because Amazon is selling a vibrating brush in the toy section, do not assume it is actually meant for kids. We got some, ummm, rather adult items that way.)  As Allie got more control and awareness with her right side, the notion that it doesn't really feel the same to her escaped me.

In that moment at the store, I said that was really interesting and we joked that it was a good thing she had her nose to rub on things, and we kept shopping. Later that night, we decided to run an "experiment" to see what felt different between her right and left sides.  We concluded that her right arm down to her elbow felt the same, but it was different from her elbow to her fingers. Her right foot from the ankle down couldn't decipher the softness either.  We then got some warm water to see if those parts could feel heat the same, which she said they did.

I think it's great that she is able to express these things, and that she does it in such a matter of fact way.  There was never a hint of disappointment but rather openness and curiosity.  She rather liked being the subject of our experiment.  We got lucky that she has such a good attitude about everything.

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