Tomatis® Sound Therapy for ASD/Autism



30 September 2016


We had the pleasure of having Pam Mitchell enter our family’s life in 2013, when we were looking for childcare for our two children, William and Jessie. At the time Pam was the visiting teacher for home based childcarers Busy Bodies in Te Anau.

Our son William at the time was 3 and diagnosed with a severe communication disorder and possible ADHD. He required special supervision and had multiple extra services visit him, such as an occupational therapist, speech therapist and early intervention coordinator, while all under the care of a pediatrician. With the help of these services, his home educator Becky, and the guidance of Pam, William started to make some progress.

During 2015, doctors felt that William was exhibiting more markers of ASD (Autism) than previous tests had shown. As William started school in June, Pam approached my husband, Kris, and I about a new therapy that she had researched and trained in. This was Tomatis, a music therapy that was geared to awakening the brain and making new cognitive connections. I considered this alternative medicine, until I spoke with our GP and she said music therapy and physical therapy were some of the only medically proven therapies, that didn’t involve drugs, that helped children on the spectrum.

William began the Tomatis programme during his second term at school. I didn’t think we would make it through one session as William didn’t like things on his head, around his ears or loud music, these things could throw him into a meltdown. I was amazed one day when I arrived to pick him up that he was sound asleep. Within days William had stopped bed wetting, previous visits to an incontinence nurse hadn’t stopped this. He was now sleeping through the night regularly, for the first time in 5 years. He was generally calmer and had longer periods of focus. William’s speech therapist was astounded by the huge advancement in his oral language in the month between visits. After our second round of Tomatis, she felt his oral language skills were now on par with his peers.

After round two, changes weren’t as dramatic, but William was focusing in class better, but still achieving “below’ the national standard. Three months later after our 3rd round of Tomatis, William was now achieving “at” the national standard.

As a trained teacher, I have seen the struggles that many children have with school. The fact that William was now achieving, meant he could further concentrate on developing his social skills and continue to be a happy soul.

Our main goal for William has always been to be raise someone who can be happy in themselves while also positively contributing to society. Tomatis has been one of the non-invasive things that has allowed us to set along this path. The care, patience and passion for this therapy and her clients that Pam gives is another serious contributing factor.

I highly recommend this therapy and Pam Mitchell, to all ASD parents, as we all know there isn’t anything to lose from our children listening to beautiful, peaceful music every day. You will be amazed at the positive changes it will make to your whole family.
Raewyn Harrison
BEd (Tchg), NZDipBus, tired Mum of 2, Wife and Teacher.

The use of music as therapeutic intervention for students with APD

The use of music and other forms of organized sound as a therapeutic intervention for students with auditory processing disorder: providing the best auditory experience for children with learning differences

by Faronii-Butler, Kishasha O., Ed.D., FIELDING GRADUATE UNIVERSITY, 2013, 154 pages; 3603783

This auto-ethnographical inquiry used vignettes and interviews to examine the therapeutic use of music and other forms of organized sound in the learning environment of individuals with Central Auditory Processing Disorders.

It is an investigation of the traditions of healing with sound vibrations, from its earliest cultural roots in shamanism and ritual healing ceremony through its present evolutionary form of what is currently referred to as music and auditory integration therapy. The matter-altering power of sound-wave vibrations are invited to support traditional teaching methodologies in the learning environment of children with ADHD, ASD, and other learning differences as well as neuro-typical children who have difficulty attending due to issues caused by a disruptive, distorted, or inappropriate processing of sounds.

This qualitative research proposes that sound vibrations and music-based listening can be directed with given intention. Timbre, pitch, and volume can target specific areas of the body to bring about changes in problematic behavior, language acquisition, as well as improved productivity, learning, and development. Read More