Sensory Integration and Your Child
Sensory integration is the process by which an individual registers and interprets sensory information, (e.g. touch, movement, sights, and sounds,) in order to produce an adaptive motor response and to interact effectively in the world. For example, in order to lift a suitcase, an individual's sensory system must register and interpret the weight of the suitcase in order for the individual's motor system to know how much muscle power is needed to perform that motor task. If that individual's sensory system does not provide adequate and/ or accurate sensory information to the motor system, the individual may not be able to perform the motor movement of lifting the suitcase. If this is the case, and the individual is unable to or is very challenged by this motor task, then either the individual may not register the sensory information correctly, or the individual may not interpret the sensory information correctly. This may constitute as a sensory-motor deficit. A sensory-motor deficit may hinder a child's development in the following areas: fine-motor skills, daily living skills, playing sports, performing new motor tasks, tolerating different clothing textures, and eating foods.
Your child may be suffering be from Sensory Integration Dysfunction if they demonstrate one of more of the following behaviors
● Overly sensitive to touch, movement, sights, or sounds
● Difficulty with handwriting, pencil grasp, cutting with scissors, and/ or other tools
● Coordination problems, difficulty learning new motor tasks, and or clumsiness
● Poor organization of behavior, (e.g. impulsive, easily distracted, difficulty adjusting to
● Difficulty dressing self (e.g. Performing fasteners, zippers, buttons, and/ or tying laces)
● Complains about wearing clothes due to tags, seams, and/ or fabric textures.
Occupational therapy treatment is key to provide the sensorimotor experiences the child needs to function optimally in the world.