a great way to help your family understand

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-19-2009
a great way to help your family understand
Thu, 10-06-2011 - 8:44am

It's hard for us to understand hypotonia so it's doubly hard for those who haven't been exposed. Here is a little visual that may help them to understand (if you can get real rubber bands, even better!)

think of 3 rubber bands (gum bands for those outside of the US) one like the kind you get off of a stalk of broccoli is really stiff and hard to stretch, another is so loose that you can wrap it around your whole body but it never snaps back into place well and it's really limp. the final rubberband is the one you'd use as a sling shot or to "shoot" across the room. You can stretch it with the pressure that you'd expect and it will quickly go back into place if you let go.

the first rubberband is like hypERtonia, the second is a picture of hyPOtonia and the third is "normal" muscle tone.

It helped me to explain and to understand - hope it helps you too!

Avatar for jessthemom
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
That is a great mental and visual guide to understanding Hypotonia. Thank you Heather and welcome to the board :) I know it has been a constant struggle to make people understand the difference between strength and tone, and even more difficult for them to grasp the low tone idea :)
iVillage Member
Registered: 09-17-2011
Thank you! That's a great visual and an awesome explanation! Will use it to explain to family and friends who say I'm crazy!