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Sensory Processing Disorder
What is sensory processing disorder?
- Formerly called as Sensory Integration Dysfunction, Sensory Processing Disorder is a complex disorder of the brain that affects developing children.
- Children with SPD feel bombarded by everyday sensory information, such as taste, touch, sound, vision and movement
- It’s like a neurological traffic jam that prevents parts of the brain from properly processing sensory information
- Often results in problem behavior that can be very disruptive in a child’s day to day life.
What causes it?
- The cause of SPD is not known. However, it appears some children may be at greater risk of developing the condition. Increased risk factors include:
- Diagnosed condition on autism spectrum
- Tube fed for extended periods of time
- Drug addicted during fetal development
- Relatives or siblings with SPD
- Food allergies
- Being a gifted child
What are the symptoms?
- Most obvious manifestations is that the child is easily distracted by extraneous noises or very sensitive to wearing certain fabrics or materials. Others include:
- Negative response to unexpected or loud noises
- Holds hands over ears
- Prefers to be in the dark
- Avoids eye contact
- Does not seem to smell strong odors
- Continually seeks various movement activities
- Constantly hangs on other people, furniture, objects
- Walks on toes
- Avoids climbing or jumping
- Takes excessive risks while playing, a no safety awareness
- Avoids getting messy with glue, sand, finger paint
- Has decreased awareness of pain or temperature
- Has difficulty paying attention
- Is overly affectionate with others
- Is accident prone
- Seems anxious
It SPD is somewhat similar to ADHD?
- Some of the symptoms of SPD are similar to ADHD- therefore, this disorder is commonly misdiagnosed.
How is SPD treated?
- Can be treated by increasing mental functioning of the child by retraining the brain through brain mapping, a non-invasive, non-medicated solution
- Brain mapping used in conjunction with neurofeedback training is a powerful method for regulating brainwave activity through the use of game-like displays on a computer monitor.