As part of his Self-Management programme, one of George’s learning outcomes was to ‘Prepare for and accept medical / hygiene intervention’, within which his difficulties surrounding getting his hair cut would be addressed.
Prior to enrolling at Transition2, George did not enjoy getting his hair cut. He found it difficult to sit down for any prolonged period of time and became agitated by the sound and feel of the hair clippers, so much so that he had never had his hair cut by anyone other than his father at home.
Now, nearing the end of his course at T2, through a long journey and a lot of hard work, George has got to the stage where he no longer fears getting his hair cut and actively seeks out his parents to request (through signing) that he would like to be taken to his local hairdressers.
He achieved this outcome through a process of small, structured and supported steps.
The first of these steps was for George to overcome some of the sensory stimulation issues relating to touch and his inability to wait. This was done through him receiving massage and hair shampooing treatments at college by two external hair and beauty professionals.
Once George was displaying an acceptance of these sensory interventions, recognising the need to stay still and enjoying the sensation of touch, he then began getting his head shaved by our external hairdresser with hair clippers in our on-site salon.
He then accepted the participation of some of his peers (learning hairdressing skills as part of their Vocational Skills curriculum) in cutting his hair.
By the end of his second term at T2, George was comfortable in getting his hair cut by the college’s hairdresser and was ready to visit their salon in Belper, with his Key Worker, to get his hair cut.
Having coped so well within this activity, after three visits, he was then able to visit another salon to get his hair cut by a stylist he had not previously met but was known by his Key Worker, who contacted the salon in preparation for his visit.
Again, there were no issues surrounding these visits and George was even signing to staff that we would like his hair cut. It was at this stage that George then accessed his local hairdressers in Chellaston.
Following a supported visit by T2 staff, George’s parents were then asked to accompany him on his next visit and feed back on his development.
By the beginning of his second year at T2, George was accessing a salon, in his local community, with his parents. Furthermore, due to his new found acceptance of others and associated sensory stimuli, his mother has since informed the college that he is now far more comfortable with going to the dentist and doctors, which is a fantastic outcome for both George and his family.