How the PBS System Is Used in Habilitative Therapy Programs

Focusing on the patient, collaborating treatment efforts, and analyzing the results help make PBS therapy strategies a success.

Positive Behavior Support, or PBS, is a treatment model that helps individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities overcome their personal barriers to reach their goals. Using positive behavior supports strategies in therapy also helps them develop appropriate and productive behaviors. When investigating different treatment centers, ask about how they integrate PBS into their therapy programs.

How Does the PBS Model Work?

The PBS treatment philosophy focuses on helping individuals who have intellectual and developmental disabilities that are preventing them from leading their ideal life or achieving their goals.

One of the core components of this philosophy is an understanding that certain behaviors are predictable and reasonable when whatever happens before and after those behaviors is understood. This is based on the well-researched science of Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA). Developing PBS practices and techniques requires teaching patients new skills by analyzing how they react to new challenges. Many therapists will even change rooms if an environment ever appears to be a negative trigger for the individual.

PBS practices and techniques are constructed to reduce problem behaviors and increase the development of socially acceptable activities. Both of these goals drive the creation of new PBS interventions and provide a supportive framework for understanding its success. If the program is not changing the individual’s behaviors, then the practice and technique is revised according to their needs.

Benefits of PBS in Habilitative Therapy

PBS first rose to prominence in the 1980s as a way to understand, and later address, any problematic behaviors. Because PBS is foremost a model of thought and approach, it can be used both inside and outside of a treatment program. This gives caregivers of children and adults who need habilitative therapy an opportunity to continue supporting the program at home. For this reason, using positive behavior supports strategies in therapy has proved to be highly effective.

By using the PBS philosophy, habilitative treatment programs have improved in the following ways:

  • Improved treatment plans. The person-focused nature of the PBS philosophy has vastly increased the amount of time and importance placed on creating custom plans for each individual patient. The first step is diagnosis, which should determine exactly what types of behavior supports will help improve the patient’s quality of life. While this establishes a starting point, the tenants of PBS philosophy call for continual evaluation and alteration of the treatment plan.
  • United goals. One of the core tenants of PBS is that everyone involved with treating the patient should be on the same page. Everyone who regularly works with them, from the parents and siblings to teachers and doctors, should know what behavioral supports are being encouraged and how to react to problematic behavior.
  • Reduced restrictive procedures. The rise, acceptance, and validity of PBS has greatly reduced the use of restrictive procedures as a method of correcting problematic behavior. Instead of using restraints, punishment, and other negative techniques, the PBS philosophy encourages the exploration of positive ways to detour problem behavior through analyzing the cause and resolution of an issue. Additionally, some studies on adults with developmental disables have indicated that PBS-driven practices improve independence and quality of life in patients.

Habilitative therapy that incorporates PBS practices is a vital element of a multi-faceted approach to treating anyone with developmental disorders. In fact, PBS practices will support many other approaches because they aim towards rewarding good behaviors, instead of relying on punishment to detract negative ones. This allows PBS practices to pair well with any program in which progress can be measured.

If you are looking into programs that incorporate positive behavior supports strategies in therapy in Little Rock, contact Integrity, Inc. at 501-406-0442 to learn more about our services.

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