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Rehabilitation Resources

LifeScape provides training for professionals and families, as well as for children. Through our expertise in serving a diverse demographic of all ages and all abilities, we have developed an extensive library of “Resources,” covering a wide variety of topics.

What are you looking for?

Whether the article focuses on the development of children with a disability or provides simple tips and tricks for parents, we are certain that you will find a topic you are interested in or will learn something new that will help you or your family.

Our “Resources” are organized into six main categories: Parent, Therapy, Education, Autism/Behavioral, Psychology, and Rehabilitation. If you do not find what you’re looking for, please let us know.

Imagine your child has been in the hospital for several weeks after a life-threatening accident or illness. They are recovering, but can’t do things they could before. Inpatient Rehabilitation is your lifeline to get back to normal. Inpatient rehabilitation involves an interdisciplinary team working with you to help your child return to who they were before their accident or illness. LifeScape offers the only Pediatric Inpatient Rehabilitation Program in South Dakota.

Rehabilitative care provides comprehensive interdisciplinary services to children and adolescents with a range of rehab needs. Patients with disorders of the brain, spinal cord, and musculoskeletal system—which may include brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, stroke, and post-orthopedic surgeries—can benefit from intensive rehabilitation.

In Inpatient care, your child would get 24-hour medical and nursing services, nutritional oversight, a social worker, physical and occupational therapies, speech-language pathology, and clinical psychology services. Patients are also followed by a physician specializing in pediatric physical medicine and rehabilitation.

Criteria for children and adolescents to be admitted to inpatient rehabilitation include the ability to participate in three hours of therapies per day. Rehab goals may include returning to previous levels of independence with mobility, self-care, speech and language, and feeding and swallowing. Evaluation for and fitting of assistive devices may also be part of an individualized treatment plan, if needed.

Our rehabilitation team is highly trained to care for patients with tracheostomies, feeding tubes, ventilators, central lines, or other complex medical issues. They work with primary care providers, families and even schools to prepare for discharge and return to home.

When patients reach a level of improvement that intensive, inpatient care is no longer needed, they may transition to outpatient rehabilitative services. LifeScape offers comprehensive pediatric outpatient services, including physical and occupational therapies, speech-language pathology, clinical psychology, orthotics and prosthetics, and durable medical equipment services and support, as well as follow-up care with our pediatric physical medicine and rehab providers.

Comprehensive care, close to home. We hope you’ll never need our services for your child, but if you do, we’re here to provide world-class, compassionate care to get you back on the road to “normal.”

There are lots of benefits to movement and exercise in the water, for adults and kids. Did you know that LifeScape has a warm water pool at our 26th street location in Sioux Falls? Our pool averages a warm and relaxing 96° Fahrenheit, which is perfect for relaxing tight muscles and decreasing pain.

Aquatic therapy is a great option for a variety of conditions and diagnoses.

Post-injury – People recovering from surgery or from an injury can greatly benefit from aquatic therapy. Exercising in the water is known to have lasting effects for kids and those with disabilities as well.

Children – Aqua therapy is excellent for kids who are developing motor skills. Because they can move in a weightless space (the pool), they can work muscle groups and joints more than they could on land. Kids with spinal cord injuries and diagnoses such as muscular dystrophy, cerebral palsy, hypotonia, developmental delays, Down syndrome and stroke, all can benefit greatly from pool therapy.

Cerebral Palsy – People who have cerebral palsy can benefit from all types of therapy, but water allows those with CP to hydrate their bodies, thus revitalizing their musculoskeletal systems. The weightlessness that water provides is also beneficial and allows people with cerebral palsy to practice balance in a safe environment.

Patients with Brain and Spinal Cord Injuries – Studies have shown that aquatic therapy enhances recovery efforts for people with traumatic brain and spinal cord injuries. Water can help strengthen muscles and develop motor coordination – even in patients who are weak, paralyzed or partially paralyzed. In addition, warm water can help alleviate anxiety and provide a calming environment, further helping those with brain injuries. Balance exercises, essential to those with neurological conditions, can be performed safely in water, and helps patients be less afraid of falling.

Autism – Children and adults with autism need calm and non-stimulating environments to thrive. Warm water can help children learn in an environment where they can experience exercise without the stress of too much stimulation. Water can also help them develop a greater sense of wellbeing, and give them a chance to work muscles for greater mobility without stimulation and distractions typical on playgrounds or in gyms.

Therapy in warm water offers many benefits, including the following:

  • Increase in joint flexibility. Buoyancy offers a tremendous advantage because it reduces the effects of gravity, allowing for increased joint range-of-motion. Your affected body part will float, making it easier and less painful to move. The warm water also helps to relax muscles that are sore or tight.
  • Increase in muscle strength. Water is 600-700 times more resistive than air, which allows for strengthening of weakened muscles. Water resists rapid movement so equipment with increased surface area is used to increase strength in the pool.
  • Decrease in pain. Immersion in warm water increases an individual’s comfort, by increasing blood supply to sore muscles and promoting relaxation. Weight relief to weakened body structures also creates additional comfort.
  • Decrease in abnormal tone, spasticity, and rigidity. Water temperatures above 92 degrees in conjunction with hands-on techniques are effective in creating neutral warmth that reduces increased tone due to a neurological injury.
  • Improved balance. The uniform pressure of the water along with buoyancy provides support to your body which allows you increased time to react without the fear of falling or getting hurt.

If you are interested in pool therapy for your child or young adult, give us a call to learn more! 605-444-9700.

Whether you are born with or acquire a disability that requires the use of assistive devices for mobility, getting the right equipment is essential. Those of us with aging parents showing signs of mobility problems should be paying attention to proposed legislation that can have positive or negative effects on getting the right rehab equipment.

A recent survey of 45 companies representing 402 Medicare supplier locations across the US indicated that 65% have seen recent payment cuts. This has significantly reduced their ability to provide the right wheelchair and accessories to Medicare beneficiaries. In plain English – Medicare beneficiaries are frequently getting equipment that doesn’t even meet their needs, due to how payment (reimbursement) is determined. How helpful is that? Wheelchairs and other mobility devices are intended to augment physical mobility limitations and should come equipped to allow for the maximum independence possible by the user. Changes from fee schedules to competitive bidding have had an overall negative impact – to beneficiaries as well as to suppliers.

LifeScape has been setting the bar for comprehensive and individualized evaluations for mobility equipment for nearly 20 years. Our staff are highly trained and are persistent when it comes to Medicare, Medicaid, or private insurance approval for complex rehabilitation technology. If our clients need accessory components to reach their maximum potential, we do the work to justify payment for it.

Ironically, we planned this message during our celebration of National Rehabilitation Awareness Week, since assistive technology is such an important aspect of rehabilitation and independent living. Notably, H.R. 3730 was introduced to the House of Representatives on September 11th, 2017, and no action has been taken. This bill amends title XVIII (Medicare) of the Social Security Act to prohibit the application of Medicare competitive acquisition rates to complex, rehabilitative, manual wheelchairs and accessories. (A competitive bidding program has replaced the use of established fee schedule amounts to determine payments under Medicare for certain durable medical equipment such as wheelchairs.). To learn more, and to send an email to your federal representatives in Congress, go to

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