Special Topic Course: Sensory-Based Intervention Guideline For Preterm Infants In The NICU

By Sue Ludwig

“A wealth of information! Magnificent breakdown of readily usable material!” – Kimberly Hamilton, OTR/L

Speakers: Bobbi Pineda, PhD, OTR/L, CNT Joan Smith, PhD, RN, NNP-BC

Topic: Sensory-Based Intervention Guideline for Preterm Infants in the NICU

Release: Available Now, On-Demand

Course Description: The NICU environment can have deleterious effects on early brain structure and function. Although preterm infants are susceptible to negative and poorly timed external stimuli, they should be in utero and experiencing multidimensional sensory exposures, which drive early brain development. Instead, high-risk infants in the NICU are exposed to invasive and painful medical interventions and lack positive and consistent forms of sensory exposures, which are critical for optimizing development. Parenting an infant in the NICU is challenging, and many parents do not know how or when to engage with their infants. While the use of sensory exposures, such as skin-to-skin care and massage, have been related to better parent and infant outcomes, most interventions are implemented inconsistently and/or for short periods of time in the NICU. To maximize the benefit of positive sensory exposures in the NICU, we have developed a structured sensory-based guideline titled “Supporting and Enhancing NICU Sensory Experiences (SENSE)”, that includes specific doses and targeted timing (based on PMA) of interventions such as massage, auditory exposure, rocking, holding, and skin-to-skin care. A synthesis of the results is presented.

Speaker Bios: Click here.

Target Audience: OT, SLP, PT, RN, and Neonatal professionals

Level: Intermediate

CE Credit:

  • PT 1 hour
  • OT/SLP 0.5 hours


  1. Define how early sensory experiences drive brain development.
  2. Describe the rigorous process of intervention development undertaken to develop the sensory-based guideline.
  3. Define the dose and timing of sensory-based interventions appropriate for preterm infants in the NICU across time.

Fee: $37 or FREE for NANT Members

Instructional Method: Recorded webinar with handouts. Learning assessment and course evaluation follow course.

Click here to access the course now.

“Great course. This is good information for all in the NICU. Look forward to seeing further research from the SENSE program!” – Sarah Poligone, MS, CCC-SLP

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