Functional neurology is a speciality of Neuroscience that explains the direct connection between the central nervous system, the peripheral nervous system, the sensory receptors and the regulation of body functions. At Tot Teràpia we carry out exploration sessions based on Functional Neurology with all our patients. In these sessions, different movements are observed, just as in a neurological examination, and scientifically predetermined bio-markers are used to determine if there is any dysfunction or difference from one side of the body to the other. With this information, specific exercises can be performed to strengthen those areas and/or neural circuits. Thanks to multi-sensory stimulation and sensory-motor exercises, we will inhibit the primitive reflexes present, strengthen the weaker hemisphere and balance the brain.
Functional Neurology understands that the brain not only sends information to the body but also receives information and stimulation from the body and the senses. If we perform movements and stimulate the senses we can train the brain and this is precisely what Functional Neurology exercises will do.
In normal development, the learning of any function always develops from simpler, sometimes automatic structures, on which other more complex structures, which are increasingly conscious, develop. For example, a baby, before walking, acquires better postural control and can sit up, or before speaking, first walks or moves.
The higher centres of the brain must increase control and direction over the lower centres. However, if there are developmental difficulties, the persistent dominance of the lower level over certain functions will have an effect on how the person functions, their ability to learn and their behaviour.
In Tot Teràpia we will identify the dysfunctions in the lower levels (below), and we will try to remedy problems in this area in order to influence or enhance their projection in more complex areas (above). We will then be working with a "bottom-up" approach. From the most basic to the most complex.
On the other hand, we also work with a "top-down" approach when we train the more complex cognitive functions of the cortex (above), for example, when we ask the patient to consciously perform movements or thoughts and we train their cortex, which has superior control over the nervous system and over the whole body. Everything that can be consciously instructed to a person we consider to be a "top-down" approach. For example, when we do a pseudo-word reading training in order to improve reading speed, we do a pseudo-word reading training.
In the vast majority of therapies, we only work from the "top-down" approach, that is, from the training or repetition of complex cognitive functions that are not developed. At Tot Teràpia, we always start at the base, "bottom up" to ensure that all basic functions are at their maximum potential. Then, in a second phase we include the "top down" and train those more complex functions.