Angelica’s experience at the Healthy Athletes screening was almost overwhelming. We went to the [Special Olympics Saskatchewan 2017 Winter Games] hoping to win a gold, which we did, but what we came away with was worth more than any gold medal.
The Healthy Athletes screening was a new concept for us. Wow! So many free gifts and fun kinds of healthy testing. but little did we realize that we’d find out that life could get easier and be extended for Angelica.
It started with the Special Smiles screening where the dentist informed us that Angelica would be able to get her teeth done just like any other dental patient. This meant she could have her teeth checked every six months as compared to once every two years, which had always entailed anaesthesia, hospitalization, and fear since she coded under anaesthesia when she was only 8 months. Previously, I had begged other dentists to try to do dental work in the chair. They refused. We now travel to Regina twice a year to see Dr Piche and his hygienists. NO MORE ANAESTHETIC.
We then moved on to see the podiatrist at the Fit Feet screening who suggested to us that Angelica was walking unbalanced. She has one foot that is 3.5 inches shorter and her orthotics just weren’t cutting it. She complained of back issues continuously. We now see Dr Hauk in Saskatoon who re-prescribed a much more suitable orthotic and Angelica hasn’t complained of back pain since.
The fun nutrition games, testing machines, and Fun Fitness teams running these events encouraged Angelica tremendously. We came home to a new lifestyle. She goes to Curves five days a week for a double workout and walks for a half hour every day. Angelica has lost a whopping 87.5 lbs!
We cannot thank the volunteers enough that participate in the Healthy Athlete screening. Angelica's new lifestyle will both extend and improve her quality of life. We are forever grateful to all the specialists, their teams, and Special Olympics.
- Shelley, Pat and Angelica Finney