Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Sensory Processing Disorder is REAL

"Everybody has some sort of sensory 'issue', especially in kindergarten."

Ever heard a phrase similar to that? Ever get down right mad when it was during your child's IEP or 504plan meeting? Ever have your child's SPD symptoms completely dismissed even though you have an official diagnosis from one of the top Children's Hospitals in the country?

We have heard this. Not just from his current school. Other places too.

Benji is tactile defensive, oral defensive, visual and auditory defensive while also being deep pressure seeking. He is able to function because we work with him and he has had therapy for most of his life. Yet, there are still issues.
  • He will fall out of his seat for the deep pressure
  • He will fall to the ground.
  • He does chew on things 
  • He will refuse to eat something because of how it looks or feels
  • He can not focus in a room that is loud and busy
  • He has a difficult time going to stores, malls, or public play areas
 There are some fun quirks too. Benji can blow your mind with his intelligence if he decides to share it with you. He is very stubborn, but in the same light once he decides to do something it will get done. So, while he may not sit still while doing quiet work or during circle time, most of the time he is fully aware of what is going on and taking it in.

There are ways to treat Benji's sensory issues.
  • a sling swing 
  • BIG hugs
  • jumping on the mini trampoline
  • carrying a heavy ball up and down the hall
  • simple exercises (jumping jacks, sit-ups w/ exercise ball, touching toes)
  • playing in dry beans
  • painting with shaving cream
  • nice warm epsom salt bath (15-20 minutes)
  • soft long sleeve shirts w/o tags
  • allowing his silky (piece of satin fabric like a security blanket)
There is more, but that is just an idea. When his SPD gets out of control there is only a limited time that we have to stop a meltdown. He gives us warning signs.
  • He starts getting clingy or appearing tired
  • Sucks his thumb, twirls hair
  • Starts rocking if sitting
  • Gets whiny (at this point the environment HAS to change)
  • meltdown
A meltdown is not the same as a tantrum. Tantrum are typically because a child didn't get something they wanted or wasn't allowed to do something they wanted to. Tantrums you can let the child get it out and in a couple minutes it is done. This is not the same for a meltdown. Meltdowns are the child letting you know that their body just can't take it anymore. The child is not in control once a meltdown strikes.

So PLEASE, PLEASE, remember, Sensory Processing Disorder is REAL!
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