top ten things about my kids SPD (sensory processing disorder)
If you would have told me ten years ago that there was a disorder where certain kids can’t process various aspects of sense, I would have probably thought you were making it up.
My second child was a preemie and in her first few years we noticed certain aspects she had that didn’t really make sense to us. So our awesome pediatrician sent us for some tests to rule some things out. Here is a great article from Parents Magazine about it http://www.parents.com/health/kids-who-feel-too-much/
Here are ten things I want you to know about my childs sensory processing disorder:
1. Not all kids with SPD have autism. My child was a preemie, there may or may not be a link to SPD with preemies, but researchers aren’t really sure why it happens.
2. It can be hereditary. While it may not have been called as such when I was a kid, I remember I hated tags and I hated to feel certain textures like cheap paper napkins.
3.I am trying my hardest to control her emotions/reactions when we are in public and she is overwhelmed. I would also prefer her not to be super hyper or having a meltdown so don’t judge me.
4. One thing that works for us and for her is to be “brushed” with this plastic brush thing, that reminds me of a small horse brush, it’s weird but it works.
5. Another thing that helps is to hold her close or wrap her in a blanket almost like when she was a baby and we swaddled her. She also loves to carry/push heavy things- gallon jugs, laundry baskets with clothes in them. I monitor it and if it seems too much I don’t let her do it, but heavy lifting helps her calm down.
6. We are parents with rules and boundaries but sometimes all it takes is patience with her, so don’t assume we let our children run wild.
7. I just found a sensory store on Amazon.com with lots of cool things to help calm and keep SPD kids focused. Our favorite thing that we’ve bought tons of over the years is a vibrating chew stick.
8. It is very difficult to have this diagnosed/taken seriously. Because she has some other issues she’s been tested by OT’s at 2 and at 4 and both times didn’t register enough to qualify for therapy, but they were kind enough to teach me home techniques and offer some resources. I was also informed that many insurance companies won’t cover therapies because it’s not something that is recognized by many doctors.
9. I used to think raising my voice to reflect my disapproval of her behaviour would help, I’ve since learned the best thing for us is Magic 123 and lots of patience. They say God gives us what we need to help us be who we are meant to be. I had 0 patience before this child and her episodes are changing me for the better.
10. Always trust your mama instinct. When we noticed she did not mind sitting in a bath of ice cold water (while we waited for it to warm up) or that anything slightly warm to the touch bugged her out, we talked to our ped. and she was very good about referring us to specialists. Most times moms realize when something is not right with their child.