Severinus offers daily treatment and guidance for children aged 0 to 18 with developmental delays, intellectual disabilities, or severe multiple disabilities through its Children’s Day Center (KDC). Children can be themselves up to five days a week, under the care of a multidisciplinary team. Lieke enjoys attending. Lieke has a very rare chromosomal abnormality, trisomy 9 in mosaic form. Lieke is extremely active, and her behavior isn’t always clear to her caregiver Francy from Severinus and her parents. Sometimes it seems like restlessness or dissatisfaction, but sometimes it also appears to be enthusiasm. Together, Francy and mother Linda wanted to use HUME to investigate the meaning of Lieke’s restlessness and discover whether this behavior was a stress response or a form of processing. In addition, they used HUME to investigate which adjustments contribute to reducing her restlessness.
HUME is an intelligent sensor system from Mentech. HUME determines a person’s stress level based on measured heart rate, sweat production, and movement. This is measured using sensors such as a chest strap, patch, or smart sock. The stress indicator is displayed as a traffic light on a tablet or smartphone. This provides the client or healthcare worker with an early warning of tension buildup. HUME is part of the treatment for clients with difficult-to-understand behavior at the Severinus care institution.
In the beginning, Francy had to figure out how to interpret HUME’s tension notifications, as they indicated both low and high tension. Francy also observed when HUME gave relaxation notifications in the app. This way, she could clearly see the effect of interventions in HUME’s stress notifications. She discovered that walking sometimes caused restlessness for Lieke. On the other hand, the standing table (a construction that allows Lieke to stand independently) visibly provided relaxation, as it gave her an overview of the group. Lieke prefers to maintain closeness or connection with Francy; she is calm and explores her surroundings. Francy is enthusiastic about using HUME: “I am surprised that I have received so much new information, which allows me to form a much more conscious view of the behavior of clients like Lieke.”
The HUME results confirmed mother Linda’s insights. “I can trust myself because what I see is accurate thanks to HUME,” says Linda. As an example, she mentions music as an intervention for restlessness. Music has always been a means to relax Lieke. Linda took Lieke to listen to live music while wearing HUME. The whole time, Lieke was “green” and relaxed. On Saturday, while playing at XieJe and during Lieke’s stay at the sleepover farm, Linda and Francy received tension notifications. Lieke became very excited by all the children and activities around her. Many enjoyable stimuli, which Lieke cannot regulate herself. By using music and watching Juf Roos, Linda and Francy saw the tension notifications significantly decrease. The music intervention was successful, making Lieke more relaxed.