Sunday, January 31, 2010

What signs and symptoms of SPD does your child have? - continued

Did I mention that I have TWO children with Sensory Processing Disorder? I just went through the Sensory Processing Disorder Checklist: Signs and Symptoms of Dysfunction (from for my daughter. She is soon to be eight years old and is doing pretty well in school but we want to start her in therapy to help her. Here are her symptoms:

Refuses to wear new or stiff clothes, clothes with rough textures, turtlenecks, jeans, hats, or belts, etc.

Is a picky eater, only eating certain tastes and textures; mixed textures tend to be avoided as well as hot or cold foods; resists trying new foods

Has a preference and craving for excessively spicy, sweet, sour, or salty foods

May be afraid of the dark

In constant motion, can't seem to sit still

Bites or sucks on fingers

Prefers clothes to be as tight as possible

Written work is messy

Appears to "make noise for noise's sake"

Bothered/irritated by smell of perfume or cologne

Has difficulty keeping eyes focused on task/activity she is working on for an appropriate amount of time

Easily distracted by other visuaol stimuli in the room

Has difficulty telling the difference between similar printed letters or figures; i.e. p and q or b and d. (By the way, I find this one really interesting and want to find out how to fix it - maybe therapy will help?)

Fatigues easily with schoolwork

Variable and quickly changing moods

If you notice, my son and daughter have very different symptoms but they both have the disorder. This is a spectral disorder like autism and encompasses many children. It has not been recognized by the American Psychiatric Society but needs to be.

Finally, I would like to add one more symptom that I did not find on the sheet. My daughter has a very difficult time falling asleep at night. I was told by the Dr. John F. Taylor PhD that these children have a very difficult time falling asleep as their brains are going 100 miles an hour and then we put them in a dark room and expect them to go to sleep! His suggestion was to get a lava lamp (which can be dangerous for small children) or one of those pretend aquariums. We bought my daughter a turtle that lights up and puts the moon and stars on the ceiling. It is called "Twilight Turtle" and can be found at

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

What signs and symptoms of SPD does your child have?

I was so happy to hear that there might be a name for the quirks that my son has. We started him in kindergarten even though we thought he might not be ready. Once again I will say thank God for the kindergarten teacher that spotted Sensory Processing Disorder. She knew it as Sensory Integration Disorder or SID but it has been renamed SPD. If you go to, there is a checklist titled "Sensory Processing Disorder Checklist: Signs and Symptoms of Dysfunction". Here are the items that I checked off for my son:

Avoids/dislikes/aversive to "messy play", i.e., sand, mud, water, glue, glitter, playdoh, slime, shaving cream/funny foam etc.

Excessively ticklish

May want to wear shorts and short sleeves year round

Has difficulty with fine motor tasks such as buttoning, zipping, and fastening clothes

Has difficulty using scissors, crayons, or silverware

May physically cling to an adult they trust

Difficulty riding a bike

Difficulty turning doorknobs, handles, opening and closing items

Difficulty getting dressed and doing fasteners, zippers, and buttons

Poor fine motor skills, difficulty using "tools", such as pencils, silverware, combs, scissors etc.

May appear ambidextrous, frequently switching hands for coloring, cutting, writing, etc.; does not have an established hand preference/dominance by 4 or 5 years old

Difficulty regulating pressure when writing/drawing - too light to see

May refuse to go to movie theaters, parades, skating rinks, musical concerts, etc.

Has difficulty chewing and swallowing

Excessive drooling past teething stage

Prefers to play on the outside, away from groups, or just be an observer

Now that is one long list but let me tell you, our pediatrician was grateful to see it. Have as much documentation of symptoms as you can when you go to see your pediatrician and...good luck!

Monday, January 25, 2010

Do you have clothing battles at your house?

My daughter will only wear bike shorts and t-shirts or knit skorts and t-shirts. In the winter, I am lucky to get her to wear a pair of leggings and a long sleeved shirt. There was a time when I could get her to wear just about anything, but now it is bike shorts or skorts and t-shirts. It is a good thing that we live in Texas! I am about to go to Gymboree and see if they have anything in her size in the back. Did you know that you can go to Gymboree and do that? Kindly ask them if they have anything in your child's size in the back and they will bring out all of the items in that size and they will be good prices. Anyway, for now, bike shorts it is....good thing it will be in the upper 60's today, in January! :)

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Sensory Processing Disorder? What is that??

Hello! This is my first time to blog and I am excited. Have you recently heard about Sensory Processing Disorder? We have a WONDERFUL kindergarten teacher that saved us from wondering what was wrong with our children. Yes, children. I have TWO children with Sensory Processing Disorder. I am not a doctor and I want to point that out up front. If you think your child might have this, please seek medical advice. Anyway, the kindergarten teacher asked if I had heard of this and I immediately went home and went to the internet, printed out a checklist and headed to the pediatrician with checklist in hand. The pediatrician thanked me for having the checklist and started my son in occupational and physical therapy the next week! From what I have read, the younger this is dealt with the better. I will talk about what symptoms my children have and have had and the adventures of our family in coming days. If you are reading this, thank you and I hope that it will help other moms!!

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