Chances are that your child, or someone’s kid you know, has some form of SPD, or sensory processing disorder. And, it’s becoming more and more common these days in a world rife with overstimulation for kids.
Most often children who are affected by SPD have exaggerated or unusual responses to things like tastes, textures, and sounds.
The way a label sewn inside a shirt feels, the loud rush of a flushing toilet, or the grainy texture of a certain type of food are all things that could set off a negative reaction in a child with SPD.
Dr. Karnik says the first step to help your child is recognizing when they start having these symptoms, and then addressing them immediately. Children as young as 1 ½ to 2 years old can usually express these types of frustrating sensory experiences.
“Most of the children I’ve seen will improve by 6 or 10 years of age as their sensory systems improve, as the brain matures,” Dr. Karnik said.
He adds that the quicker you seek a medical evaluation and determine a course of treatment, most often a type of “desensitization” occupational therapy, the sooner your child will learn how to cope and become more comfortable.
Clues that your child might have SPD are:
• kicking, screaming, crying, or head banging in the face of uncomfortable stimuli
• avoiding certain foods and faking illness to get out of eating them
• refusing to get dressed or asking to wear the same clothing over and over again to avoid something that may be itchy or restricted feeling
If you have concerns about your child’s unusual behavior possibly being caused by SPD, please contact us for an appointment with one of our specialists.
The full article featuring Dr. Karnik on SheKnows.com is available here.