What is the Nervous System?
The nervous system is made up of your brain, your spinal cord, and a network of nerves that go throughout your body. Your brain uses information it receicves from your nerves to coordinate all of your actions and reactions. Neurons carry messages back and forth from the nerve endings to the brain. Sensory nerves send messages to the brain through the spinal cord. Motor nerves carry messages back from the brain to all of the muscles and glands in your body.
**Nervous System** - Website that will help you better understand the Nervous System.

​What are some disorders related the Nervous System?
  • Alzheimers Disease
    • Most common cause of dementia
    • Affects more women than men
    • Shrinkage of the Frontal and Temporal portions of the brain shrink
    • Still searching for the cause and cure of AD.
  • Broca's Aphasia
    • Aphasia is a loss or impairment of power to use or comprehend words usually resulting from brain/nerve damage.
    • Broca's Area is in the lower part of the frontal lobe
    • This area is the main language area in the cerebral cortex because it controls the motor aspects for speech
    • People with Broca's Aphasia can usually understand what words mean, but have difficulty performing motor aspects of speech
  • Multiple Sclerosis
    • Most common demyelinating disease affecting humans.
    • Affects more women than men
    • Lesions occur in all parts of the CNS
    • Damage to the neurons can lead to optic neuritis (with complete loss of vision is one eye), diplopia, (double vision), and problems coordinating eye and head movements.
  • Tourettes Syndrome
    • The symptoms begin in childhood and become different types of "tics" as the person grows older
    • Tics include frequent irregular movements of the head, neck and shoulders.
    • Cause is unknown
    • Often, the child is hyperactive and is given some form of CNS stimulant.


How does the Nervous System apply to Occupational Therapy?
If we as OTA's were treating a patient with a Nervous System disorder, we would address things such as Emotional Regulation, Stress Management, Wheelchair positioning (depending on the disease), Medication Management, and Leisure activities. If we were seeing patients with the diseases and syndromes mentioned above, we would address almost everything.
Alzheimers Disease - If we were seeing a patient with Alzheimers, we would focus on making the patient happy and comfortable. We would do activities they enjoy while still focusing on maintaining their ability and function to do certain things. We wouldn't address Medication Management, because usually they would have someone to help them with their medications. Depending on if the patient needed a wheelchair or not, we would position them into an appropriate wheelchair.
Broca's Aphasia - If we were seeing a patient with Broca's Aphasia, we would make picture boards with common items they may need to communicate about to another person. We could also do other oral motor activities to encourage the patient to use their mouth. When addressing Broca's, usually we couldn't forse them to say words if we know they can't. This will only discourage the patient and cause them to give up. We want to encourage activities that they enjoy and thay the are able to do. Broca's aphasia is not always permenant so we would keep the patient on our case load, and do the best we can to help them.
Multiple Sclerosis - If we were seeing a patient with Multiple Sclerosis, we would focus on Medication Management and Wheelchair positioning. We would want to make sure the patient understood when to take their medicine and if they didn't, we would set up alarms to remind them and get a pill box to seperate their pills into the proper days and times to take them. We would also want to address the importance of wheelchair positioning so they do not get sores. If they could get a tilt in space wheelchair it could help them prevent sores from forming. We may also want to perform a home evaluation to make sure the patient can get around easily with a walker or wheelchair.
Tourette's Syndrome - If we were seeing a patient with Tourette's Syndrome, we would focus on Medication Management, Stress Management and Social Participation. It is very important for a Patient to take their medication as prescribed. If a person with Tourette's Syndrome does not take their medication their "ticks" can get worse. Stress can also bring on more "ticks" so we would teach them stress management skills to keep their stress levels down. We would also encourage Social Participation. Some people with Touretts do not like to go out in public because of their "ticks". It is important for these individuals to interact with the community and get involved in activities that they enjoy!