Tomatis Listening Therapy

TOMATIS Listening Therapy is the most comprehensive and effective technology of all existing auditory stimulation programs. It is increasingly popular in Europe and other well-developed countries due to its incredible effectiveness. Developed by the French ear, nose and throat specialist Dr. Alfred Tomatis who pioneered psychoacoustics over 50 years ago. The TOMATIS Therapy uses electronically modified music to re-educate the listening system, by stimulating and improving the way in which we process auditory information and thus the way that we listen and communicate.

Difficulties in processing sound to its full potential can affect brain functioning, causing problems in attention and behavior, communication skills, co-ordination, energy levels, learning abilities and sensory integration. People can be trained to improve or enhance their ability to process sound, and to overcome weaknesses or further develop listening related skills. Listening to the program literally exercises and tones tiny muscles in the ear and helps to build stronger multi-sensory pathways in the brain, improving its ability to process sound and enhance communication and cognitive abilities.

APPLICATIONS FOR CHILDREN & TEENAGERS
  •  Autism
  • Aspergen
  •  ADD/ADHD
  •  Central auditory processing difficulties
  •  Communication disorders and dyspraxia
  • Speech Delays or Stuttering 
  •  Developmental and speech delay
  •  Dyslexia
  •  Learning Problems (Written and Oral)
  •  Poor motor skills
  •  Short attention span and auditory memory difficulties
  •  Sensory integration
  • Foreign language learning 
  • Emotional Regulation and Dys-regulation
  • To stimulate progress in physical disabilities (such as post stroke, brain injury or cerebral palsy patients)
  • organic/genetic disabilities (especially Down’s Syndrome)

APPLICATIONS FOR ADULTS 

  • Emotional Regulation and Dys-regulation
  • Learning problems (written and oral)
  • Communication (spoken & sung voice)
  • Public Speaking
  • Stuttering & Speech Therapy
  • Ease of Foreign language learning and eliminating accent 
  •  Autism
  • Aspergen
  • ADD/ADHD
  • Music (for professional musicians & teachers)
  • Personal Development (Energy, Relaxation, Balance)
  • Foreign Language Learning
  • Preparation For Childbirth
  • To benefit and prevent deficiencies of your child through pregnancy
  • To stimulate progress in physical disabilities (such as post stroke, brain injury or cerebral palsy patients)
  • sleep disorders, tenseness of the spinal column, etc.

Notable beneficiaries of the TOMATIS Therapy include celebrities such as: Sting, Gerard Depardieu, Maria Callas and other internationally acclaimed musicians, singers and actors.

TOMATIS THERAPY

Autism Aspergen ADD/ADHD Auditory processing difficulties Read More

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The process of the tomatis therapy

Tomatis Listening Therapy has shown to substantially improve auditory processing difficulties, by ameliorating auditory sequential memory difficulties, the ability to distinguish speech against a variety of background noises, as well as assisting in the acquisition of phonemic discrimination and phonological awareness.

Auditory processing difficulties are caused by a variety of factors such as: 

-complications during pregnancy and birth

-delays in cognitive and/or physical development 

-speech delays 

-re-ocurring ear infections 

-adoption, premature separation from the mother or parents

-traumatic experiences or any emotional distress at any stage of development

APPLICATIONS & incredible results 

We are able to achieve incredible results through state of the art testing and therapy technology, and wealth of knowledge and expertise from our TOMATIS Therapists. Our therapists are trained and certified on all levels by Atlantis Institute, Center of Audio Psycho Phonology and Mozart Brain Institute in Belgium, which is the original institute established by Dr.Tomatis himself.

Our clients reach out to us for help for a wide range of reasons, but with the common goal to be able to function better both at home, school or professionally. They gain confidence as their auditory processing is improving, which is the core of majority of deficiencies.

PREGNANCY –Tomatis for the Mother & Child

It is astonishing that we may begin stimulate child's brain from the moment of conception. The pregnancy period is the most crucial and determines the development of your child. this is an incredible investment in prevention and the future of your child. Tomatis Therapy is an excellent preparation for birth. We see clear evidence of newborns being calmer after the mother received the therapy. The mothers cope with childbirth much better as well.

FOREIGN LANGUAGES-  Tomatis Therapy is an effective method for facilitating foreign language learning. This happens due to a very simple mechanism; as children we hear/listen to our parents, family, school environment in a particular frequency measured in Herz which is very specific for every language. For example, the frequency of Chinese is completely different from English, and therefore our ear is not able to hear well the frequency we need to learn another language effectively or with ease. With Tomatis Therapy, we enable/train your ear to hear the frequency of the desired language. 

 Autism-therapy with mother's voice by Dr.Alfred Tomatis

 Internationally, Tomatis Listening Therapy is best known to assist in alleviating the severity of behaviors contributing to the diagnosis of autism. Positive changes that have been documented within this disorder include: adaptation to change, listening response, non-verbal communication, emotional response and activity level.

How can Tomatis Therapy help?  Throughout the years of experience of Josef Veroort and his team in Atlantis, we are able to say that we see significant improvements in auditory tests, especially in brain mapping. We have to realize that all children diagnosed with autism are different and therefore, the results of their therapy and their level of development will vary. However, for all autistic children Tomatis paves a path to a state where they can participate and function better socially and emotionally. 

As Vervoort stated, within the last 30 years in the Atlantis Center, over 1200 adults and over 2500 children with autistic behaviors have undergone Tomatis Therapy and ALL have achieved positive results; 20% of the children were later considered to fit normal behavior scale, 60% achieved a significant improvement, and 20% have improved in certain aspects.

The beginning of the therapy is crucial for the end result. The sooner it can begin, the better. The recommendation would be to begin once some signs of autism can be detected.

AUDITORY PROCESSING DEFICIENCIES & LEARNING PROBLEMS

"THE NAUGHTY CHILD!!"

Children with immature auditory system can only retain a fraction of what they're told. They are unable to concentrate at school and daily tasks are becoming a challenge.

Do you feel like your child can't hear you/is not listening, or do you need to repeat your request over and over again? In majority of cases it is the inability and therefore immaturity of their auditory system, and Tomatis Therapy is a great tool for correcting it and providing solid results.

Poor listening makes poor learning. Just as one can look without seeing, one can also hear without listening. Listening requires the desire to focus on sounds. Tomatis identified this lack of desire to focus as one of the major causes of learning difficulties. The Tomatis Method provides the basis for retraining the auditory system to distinguish between the mixtures of high and low frequencies that exist in nature and speech. Often children with learning difficulties are unable to distinguish between sounds like s and z, p and b and so on. The Tomatis Listening Therapy program retrains the auditory system and brain to process sound more effectively and optimally, and by this, increase the ability and skill of listening which is the foundation of language, reading and writing. 

CERTIFIED TOMATIS THERAPISTS

Our Tomatis Therapy is conducted on the highest level of professionalism, by certified therapists trained directly by Jozef Veroort, the cofounder of the Atlantis Center in Belgium, and long time friend of Alfred Tomatis himself! This is absolutely terrific as we are able to collaborate with the ultimate experts. 

Prof. Alfred Tomatis Therapy training involves listening to appropriately selected sound material through a device called an “electronic ear” which is an perfect model of human ear – it “trains” the ear in such a way that it can work without disruptions. These exercises stimulate the central nervous system, in particular cerebral cortex, which is the center of thinking processes. Stimulation takes place through sounds with a specific frequency; these sounds are properly filtered. The training consists of several phases, individually selected sound material reaches the patient by air and through the bones. During the session, you can talk, play board and logical games, play, or sleep.

THE MOST ADVANCED EQUIPMENT

We are utilizing the newest and, most advanced equipment with medical grade certifications both for testing and for therapy. The equipment is capable of providing individualized therapies for four persons at a time which enables children to partcipate in activities and play together while receiving their individual therapy session utilizing the ear via air and bone conduction to provide energy to the brain that stimulates the skills and functions of the whole body.

THE STEPS FOR DIAGNOSIS & THERAPY

The most important, first step is our initial consultation which will determine whether the person has auditory processing deficiencies. We find out a lot of information by this initial step. Please contact us to schedule your diagnosis appointment, or join our waitlist to be contacted for one. 

I DIAGNOSIS

1. Consultation with the patient. This involves obtaining informaition about child's development from pregnancy until present.: 

-pregnancy ,birth, complication after birth

-physical and cognitive development

-general health

-family situation

-school situation 

-concerning issues such as concentration, speech, hyper activity etc.

2.Testing

Training of hearing attention is preceded by an auditory laterality test – using an audiometer, which helps to determine the level of auditory attention and the dominant ear. During the test, in the case of children, an interview with the parents is carried out regarding the course of the pregnancy, development of the child in the first and next years of life, and illness history.The client undergoes a comprehensive auditory test, followed by a discussion of the findings.

The discussion allows us to collect information and impressions from the client, or from the parents in the case of a child, and to explain what is happening according to the analysis of the listening check and the reported experiences of the client (or parents).

The listening check can, in certain cases, be complemented by other batteries of tests; however, when used alone, it can provide precise and objective information concerning functions of the ear such as the analysis of sounds, auditory laterality, the localization of sound in space, and adaptability to the surrounding sonic environment.

II THERAPY SESSIONS

Each session is very individualized-both in terms of lengh of the therapy (the number of sessions needed) and in terms of therapy program (content). The whole training consists of several phases, from very intensive sound stimulation initiating therapy up to active participation of the patient. A patient must complete all stages of the therapy. There are often a few week intervals recommended between stages.

Stage I – lasts 15 days (3 weeks), every day for 1.5 hour (90 minutes)

Stage II  – lasts 8 days –1.5 hour (90 minutes) every day, planned according to the tests conducted after the first stage is complete. This phase concentrates, as opposed to the first one, on work with the microphone, so that the patient has an opportunity to listen to the right voice and work with it.

Stage III – lasts 8 days, 1.5 hour (90 minutes) every day 


FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS 

1) What are the most obvious results of the Tomatis Therapy with respect of the children?

The most apparent results are often reported by parents, who frequently notice an improvement of:

 Autism

Asperger

ADD/ADHD

Central auditory processing difficulties

Communication disorders and dyspraxia

Speech Delays or Stuttering

Developmental and speech delay

Dyslexia

Learning Problems (Written and Oral)

Poor motor skills

Short attention span and auditory memory difficulties

Sensory integration

Foreign language learning

Emotional Regulation and Dys-regulation

To stimulate progress in physical disabilities (such as post stroke, brain injury or cerebral palsy patients)

Voice quality (spoken and sung)

Concentration comprehension

The ability to communicate

Reading skill

Oral and written expression

Motor skills

Speed

Punctuality

A better sense of rhythm

Self-reliance

Less sensitivity to sounds

General behavior (calm, open, etc…)

2) How soon do the results of the Tomatis Therapy become noticeable?

The observable results of the Tomatis Therapy must be analysed on two levels, one rather observable and the other deep-rooted. On the superficial level, many apparent results can be perceived rather quickly within a few weeks or even a few days following the onset of listening sessions. Sometimes the changes are only noticeable during the break between blocks of listening.One of the important points, then, is to recognize that these improvements are not only going to be maintained over time but also will continue well after the end of a Tomatis listening program.

3) Are the gains made during a Tomatis program lasting?

Yes, progress made during a Tomatis program lasts. This is because the gains made are not due to a conditioning but rather to a restoration of balance.

Indeed, even though the reasons for seeking help from the Tomatis are many and varied, all are related to a malfunction and thus to a mild to a severe state of neurophysiological disequilibrium. Ear training tend to lead the individual back toward a state of equilibrium, which, because it is a normal state, requires much less effort than a mild to a severe state of dysfunction. We can state, then, that, in the vast majority of cases, not only are gains made by the individual during the program maintained but also that progress may continue once the developmental process has been restored to its normal state.

4) At what age does the Tomatis Therapy produce the best results?

Even though the Tomatis is effective in many circumstances, there are certain conditions that may facilitate or impede the improvement that it produces. Thus, depending upon the nature of the problem, youth may be a facilitating factor; this is particularly the case when the problem is situated at the language level or the psychomotor level, or when it relates to scholastic performance. On the other hand, in the case of older individuals (adolescents and adults), personal motivation can often help overcome the difficulty associated with longstanding problems. In fact, there is no real age limit with respect to improvements that may be attained by using the Tomatis Therapy; experience shows that, in the vast majority of cases, good results can be achieved by individuals of all ages, whether children, adolescents, adults or the elderly.

5) Can the Tomatis Therapy be dangerous?

No, because the Tomatis Therapy is not a treatment in the medical sense of the term.

Even though it is used by specialists in the domains of medicine and related fields (paramedical), psychology, pedagogy, sports, and the arts, it is never used as a substitute for techniques specific to their area of expertise but rather as a complement, when appropriate, to reinforce the effectiveness of their own techniques.

In fact, the Tomatis Therapy simply fosters, in a gentle manner, a return to normality, without ever producing a state of trauma or disequilibrium.

The individual recovers his/her own normal state, which has the twofold advantage of soothing him/her and of allowing him/her to maintain, without further effort, the improvement made during the Tomatis listening training.

6) How are the results evaluated?

The client undergoes a Tomatis listening check, followed by a discussion with a Tomatis therapist , at the beginning of the program, during the course of the program stage and at the end of the program.

The discussion allows the consultant to collect information and impressions from the client, or from the parents in the case of a child, and to explain what is happening according to the analysis of the listening check and the reported experiences of the client (or parents).

The listening check can, in certain cases, be complemented by other batteries of tests; however, when used alone, it can provide precise and objective information concerning functions of the ear such as the analysis of sounds, auditory laterality, the localization of sound in space, and adaptability to the surrounding sonic environment.

7) How long does the average Tomatis Therapy program last?

The length of a Tomatis listening program varies according to the difficulty to be addressed. That said, the listening program should be of limited duration, if possible, the goal of the program always be to enable the individual to progress as quickly as possible to a state of optimal self-reliance. For example, the number of program blocks  rarely exceeds three or four, the first block consisting of two hours per day for 15 days and the following two or three consisting of two hours per day for 8 days.

Each block is followed by a period of integration during which the individual does not do any listening training. Thus, generally, there is a space of three to four weeks between the first and second block, a space of six to eight weeks between the second and third, and ten to twelve weeks between the third and, if necessary, a fourth block.

8) Why is the mother's presence indispensable for young children?

The Tomatis Therapy enables an individual to relive progressively the various stages of his or her development with respect to listening and language, both of which are very heavily involved in the process of communication.

This development is initiated well before birth and derives both from physiological aptitudes which mature during the intrauterine experience and from an unconscious desire to enter, or not to enter, into communication.

This desire to communicate is influenced by external factors, the most important of which is the quality of the relationship that is established progressively between mother and child during pregnancy. Whatever the quality of this relationship, the mother’s voice, perceived by the child during the nine months of pregnancy, represents a constant presence and therefore engenders a special, and reassuringly stable, link between mother and the unborn child.

It is for this reason that the mother’s recorded voice, modified in a laboratory so that it is like the voice perceived auditorily in utero, is often used during a program to rekindle the desire to communicate. In most cases, listening to the mother’s voice is a positive experience for the child and accelerates progress, provided that the mother accompanies the child every step of the way. In fact, listening sessions with the Electronic Ear will bring about changes in the child’s behavior, notably a more or less pronounced phase of regression, which must be not only consciously accepted by the mother but also experienced by her.

It is for this reason that, within the framework of the Tomatis Therapy, the accompaniment of the child by the mother or parents is considered indispensable, if it occurs under good conditions. During the child’s listening program, the mother/parents will also have listening sessions with the Electronic Ear. These will not only help them to relax but will also help them and the child accept the behavioural changes brought about by the listening program.


9) Why is the father's presence desirable?

The desire to communicate on the part of the child is brought about, even ‘authorized’, by the mother; even so, the reassuring image that she represents, while it may serve as a basis for the elaboration of language, does not provide the keys that will make language a tool of social communication. The relationship with the mother gives the child the confidence, the strength, and the desire to move toward the outside world, and thus toward the father.

For the child’s socialisation to progress normally, various conditions must be present: the mother must be willing to ‘push’ the child toward the outside world, and the father must agree to, or be ready to, ‘receive’ the child. It is for this reason that, within the framework of the Tomatis Therapy, the father’s presence is altogether desirable once the child has reached a certain stage. If the father has also been able to have listening sessions, he will be better able to understand, and to prepare himself for, his role in this process.

10) What is the relationship between the Tomatis Therapy and the different programs or sound therapies with CDs, Ipod®, or bluetooth that make reference to it?

Numerous references to the Tomatis® Method are made throughout the world because its fame reassures the buyer. Unfortunately, the products that are sold often have only the remotest relationship with the work of Alfred Tomatis.

The CDs or derivative programs that refer to Tomatis® are often nothing more than compilations of musical works, more or less well put together, which are unable to produce the effects of the Tomatis Therapy since the listener cannot benefit from the functioning of the Tomatis® Effect Electronic Ear.

The Electronic Ear has very specific operational features, including a Gating® system and sound conduction through both air and bone, which have an impact on listening attentiveness, on auditory laterality, on the localization of sound in space, on latency time, on sound discrimination and, finally, on the audio-vocal loop.

11) What does one do during the listening sessions? and why?

Auditory stimulation mediated by the Electronic Ear acts upon the archaic brain (reflexive functions) and not on the analytical zone (language functions). Since both brain hemispheres are involved in ear training, it is necessary to avoid stimulating the zones in a unilateral fashion.

That is why, during the listening sessions, reading and writing are not recommended whereas drawing, working puzzles, sleeping, even working mathematical problems are recommended. The latter activities give priority to emotional and non-linguistic associations.

However, a non-screen policy is recommended as well as no chewing as it involves the cranial nerves (V and VII) which are linked to the muscles in the middle ear that are stimulated by the Tomatis® listening program.

12) Can the Tomatis Therapy be combined with other therapies?

Yes, and in certain cases such as the following, this may prove to be advisable:

it may be that an individual is already in therapy and his/her therapist, cognisant of the Tomatis Therapy, is aware of the positive effect that listening sessions with the Electronic Ear can produce; it may be that a Tomatis® professional decides that there is no conflict with the client receiving support from another therapy and advises the client to wait until the effects of the listening sessions have been assimilated before beginning the other therapy;

finally, it may happen that the Tomatis® professional spots a problem that should obviously be addressed by a different therapy, in which case, from the time that the problem is identified, he/she will advise the client to consult another therapist, whether the problem is spotted during the listening program of a listening program has taken place. In fact, in such cases, the Tomatis Therapy acts as a technique that facilitates the effectiveness of other therapies. This being the case, there is neither incompatibility nor competition with other therapies but rather support by effectively accelerating their progress.

Numerous professionals are aware of this and choose to work either in conjunction with Tomatis® specialists or to take the training necessary to be able to apply the method themselves and, thus, to increase the effectiveness of their own professional tools.

13) Why are the listening sessions done in an intensive manner?

For the brain’s mode of perception to change, it must receive information repeated frequently at a sustained rhythm during a restricted time.

This exercise, like any other, whether mental or physical in nature, brings about a true de-conditioning that allows the brain and the body to discover that it can operate differently, and that, henceforth, a choice is possible.

Even though this rule of intensive listening sessions is valid for everyone, the effects may be somewhat different according to the nature of the problem to be addressed, the age of the individual, his or her motivation, the time available to him or her, etc…

The norm is to do 1-2 hours of daily listening during an initial block of 13-15 days depending on the age and sensitivity of the individual.

Afterwards, the listening sessions –limited in any case because the Tomatis Therapy discourages a state of dependency– rarely continue for more than 10-12 days and are spaced over several weeks.

14) Why have pauses?

Just as the brain needs intensive and repeated stimulation for change to take place, it also needs periods of non-stimulation in order to structure and integrate the change.

This principle holds true for all kinds of training, integration taking place during a phase of apparent passivity after the effort has terminated.

It is, in fact, a phase of assimilation. Stimulation represents a disturbance of our organism; we must thus allow it resting time during which assimilation can take place.

That is why the normal procedure consists of an initial block of 13-15 days of one to two-hour periods (daily) of auditory stimulation with the Electronic Ear®, followed by other 10-12-day blocks, generally limited in number given that the goal of the Tomatis Therapy is always to lead the individual as rapidly as possible to a state of optimal self-reliance. The first two blocks of the program are spread over three to four weeks, then two to three months go by between the second and the third blocks, then three months between the third and, if needed, fourth block.

15) Why use the music of Mozart?

After numerous trials with other types of music, we have found that the results obtained by using Mozart’s music are amazing, no matter where in the world it is evaluated. In fact, we note that this music is not only very well accepted on every continent but that it also allows listeners to reestablish their own inner equilibrium. To understand this effect upon the sense of human balance, we must recall that music is characterised by rhythm, which touches the body; by harmony, which reaches the emotions; and by melody, which calls upon the intellect. According to the classical ideal, these three parameters should be in balance, which is rarely the case, one or the other often being dominant, and, for this reason, producing a rather unusual musical discourse. In the case of Mozart, it seems that this balance was achieved, which may explain the universal character of his music.

16) Why use filtered music?

Filtering up to around 4000 hertz permits the brain to orient itself toward the acoustic analysis of specific zones; listening to sounds that are even more filtered corresponds to a prenatal experience, which does not, however, mean that the fetus does not hear low-frequency sounds.

According to Alfred Tomatis, if the ear is functional so early in fetal development, it is because its role is to energize the developing nervous system. It was to take advantage of this primordial competence of the ear during the prenatal phase that Alfred Tomatis decided to use filtered sound, the latter relieving the ear of its function of sound discrimination. Moreover, given the physiology of the inner ear at the level of the cochlea, high-frequency sounds produce a much greater stimulation of the nervous system than do low-frequency sounds; indeed, the ciliae, or hair cells, that receive sonic stimulation are much more numerous in zones intended for the reception and analysis of high-frequency sounds than in those designed to receive and analyze low-frequency sounds. Moreover, given the physiology of the inner ear, high-frequency sounds produce a much greater stimulation of the nervous system than do low-frequency sounds; indeed, the ciliae, or hair cells, that receive sonic stimulation are much more numerous in zones intended for the reception and analysis of high-frequency sounds than in those designed to receive and analyze low-frequency sounds.

17) Why use the mother's voice?

The use of the mother’s voice, filtered in the high frequencies, permits us at the same time to relieve the ear of its function of sound discrimination, to recharge the nervous system by stimulating the zones that have the most ciliae, or receptive hair cells in the cochlea, and to reawaken the individual’s acoustic memory of the prenatal period. This memory, whether it carries a positive or negative affective charge, was transmitted by the mother depending upon her psychological state during pregnancy, and was a very reassuring factor simply because it was constantly present. One can observe that most of the time, the utilization of the filtered mother’s voice produces an effect that both soothes and liberates.

18) Will the Tomatis Therapy help in the case of hearing loss?

The Tomatis Therapy does not improve hearing in the case of an irreversible lesion; however, whatever the situation may be, it does foster the optimal use of the individual’s listening potential, no matter how weak it may be.

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Stanford university study on tomatis therapy

The human voice provides a wealth of social information, including who is speaking. A salient voice in a child’s life is mother's voice, which guides social function during development. Here we identify brain circuits that are selectively engaged in children by their mother’s voice and show that this brain activity predicts social communication abilities. Nonsense words produced by mother activate multiple brain systems, including reward, emotion, and face-processing centers, reflecting how widely mother’s voice is broadcast throughout a child’s brain. Importantly, this activity provides a neural fingerprint of children’s social communication abilities. This approach provides a template for investigating social function in clinical disorders, e.g., autism, in which perception of biologically salient voices may be impaired.
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