Making a mirror box
Mirror therapy uses mirrors to give an illusion that the brain interprets as movement of their weaker hand or limb. The user places the affected arm inside the mirror box and their unaffected arm outside in front of the mirror.
Mirror therapy has these advantages:
- requires very little training
- people with very little movement can do it
- is easy to set up and is not very taxing to the user
- has been shown to be effective
For more explanation, return to the Mirror Therapy page.
What you need
· Full-sized by cutting an 8x10 mirror from a 12x18 sheet.
This Amazon package has two sheets cuttable into four mirrors at $23.
· Smaller-size by buying a package of 6x10 mirror sheets.
This Amazon package has four sheets for $11.
Five 8x10 foam boards. This Amazon package has five boards for $7.
Approximate cost per box for materials:
- $15 (using the full-sized mirror)
- $10 (using the smaller mirror)
Step 1: Cutting the mirror sheet
Note: Only do this step if you’re using a mirror sheet larger than 8x10 (like 12x18). If you’re using a smaller sheet (like 6x9), go to Step 2.
1a: Using a foam board, trace an 8x10 outline on the back of the mirror sheet
1b: Cut the mirror sheet.
Step 2: Connecting the boards together2a: Stack 2 boards on top of each other and tape them along the narrower edge together.
2b: Then open them up restack them to tape on the opposite side. This makes a “hinge” so that boards can be opened/closed in both directions.
2c: Repeat twice more until you have 4 boards, end to end, that have 3 “hinges” connecting them.
Step 3: Attaching the mirror
3a: Peel off the backing of mirror sheet, exposing the sticky side,
3b: Align and press firmly the mirror sheet onto one the center boards.
3c: Peel off the protective layer of the mirror side.
Step 4: Extending a board
4a: Tape another board about halfway on top of the board next the mirror board.
4b: Turn the new board over and tape the other side.
4c: Fold the whole assembly so that the mirror is straight up (90 degrees) from the table.
4d: Adhere 1 or 2 felt pads to the longer board to act as bumps to stop the board from sliding.