Sensory Processing Disorder - The Reynolds Clinic LLC

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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.