On Affective States and the Use of Affect in DIR Floortime Clinical Practice 699
LCSW-R, Master’s in Social Work, is a psychotherapist in private practice, and the DIR-Expert, ICDL, New York, USA
The leading role of affect became the premise of DIRFloortime. Ideas of S. Greenspan are confirmed by S. Porges who sees affective experience as driving force of the evolutionary process. Incidentally, children on the autistic spectrum operate within a limited repertoire of explicit emotions; it is the lack of affective expression that usually gets in a way of building meaningful connections. However, therapeutically sound range of affective initiations and responses has been studied very little. This paper examines the definition of affect within DIRFloortime framework, as compared to more conventional, albeit controversial, use of this term in the psychiatric practice. It is expected of a seasoned DIR provider to be able to identify his or her own affective state and corresponding mood fluctuations, to make use of interoceptive messages, and eventually, in the course of the therapeutic intervention, adjust it as s/he goes. In order to achieve these goals, one needs to develop working knowledge of the recent theories of neuroception, namely, polyvagal response and its link to affective experiences. Affective states, their types and intensity, need to be tailored down to meet and modulate the child’s affect; this paves the road to designing effective intervention plans. The path to effective affect modulation starts with the provider’s self-awareness. Practical considerations and strategies are discussed.
Winnicott D.W. Igra i real’nost’ [Playing and Reality].
Moscow: Publ. Institut obshchegumanitarnykh issledovanii, 2002. 288 p.
Greenspan S.I., Wieder S. Na ty s autizmom: ispol’zovanie
metodiki Floortime dlya razvitiya otnoshenii, obshcheniya i myshleniya
[Engaging Autism: The Floortime Approach to Helping Children Relate,
Communicate and Think]. Moscow : Publ. Terevinf, 2013. 512 p.
Beauchaine T.P., Gatzke-Kopp L., Mead H.K. Polyvagal
Theory and Developmental Psychopathology: Emotion Dysregulation and Conduct
Problems from Preschool to Adolescence. Biol Psychol, 2007. Feb; 74(2):
Delahooke M. Beyond Behaviors: Using Brain Science and
Compassion to Understand and Solve Children’s Behavioral Challenges. Gateway:
1st Ed., 2019.
Feldman R. Mother-Infant Skin-to-Skin Contact (Kangaroo
Care): Theoretical, Clinical, and Empirical Aspects. Infants and young
children. April 2004, 17(2):145—161.
Fosha D. (ed.), Siegel Daniel J (ed.), UCLA School of
Medicine), Solomon Marion (ed.). The Healing Power of Emotion, N.Y.: W.W.
Norton & Co. 2009. 349. 27-54.
Greenspan S.I., Greenspan N.T. First feelings: Milestones
in the emotional development of your infant and child from birth to age 4. New
York: Viking Press, 1985.
Greenspan S.I. The affect diathesis hypothesis: The Role
of Emotions in the Core Deficit in Autism and in the Development of
Intelligence and Social Skills. J. Dev. Learn. Disord, 2001. 5.
Hrabovska S.V., Salyha Yu.T. (2017). Animal Models of
Autism Spectrum Disorders and Behavioral Techniques of their Examination,
Neurophysiology, 10.1007/s11062-017-9613-2, 48, 5, (380—388), 381.
Kaplan H.I., Sadock B.J., Grebb J.A. Kaplan and Sadock’s
synopsis of psychiatry: Behavioral sciences, clinical psychiatry, 1994. (7th
ed.). Baltimore, MD.
LaPierre A. The Language of Neuroception & the Bodily
Self. (2007). Hakomi Forum, Issue 18, 39.
LoParo D., Waldman I.D. The oxytocin receptor gene (OXTR)
is associated with autism spectrum disorder: a meta-analysis. Molecular
Psychiatry, 2015. Vol. 20, 640—646.
Porges S. Neuroception: A Subconscious System for
Detecting Threats and Safety. ZERO TO THREE. 24. 2004
Rogers C.A. Way of Being. Boston, MA: Houghton Mifflin,
1980. 414, pp. 15—16.
Serby M. Psychiatric Resident Conceptualizations of Mood
and Affect Within the Mental Status Examination M.D. Am J Psychiatry, 2003;