All of the information we receive about the world comes to us through our sensory systems. These systems are:
- The sense of touch: Either being touched or touching. One sign of touch sensibility is if a child is sensitive to clothing.
- The sense of movement: The vestibular system helps us with balance, coordinating the two sides of the body, maintaining muscle tone, and just walking.
- The sense of body position: Proprioception gives us an awareness of body position and helps with large and small motor skills.
- Organization of these senses: It is the organization of the senses in use that is termed sensory integration.
- Motor planning: The tactile, proprioceptive, and vestibular senses are particularly important in providing knowledge about how the body moves and how it can be used to act on the environment.
There are certain indicators that can signal a parent that a sensory integration disorder may be present.
- Overly sensitive to touch, movement, sights or sounds
- Under-reactive to sensory stimulation
- Activity level that is unusually high or unusually low
- Coordination problems
- Delays in speech, language, motor skills, or academic performance
- Poor organization of behavior: impulsive or distractible and poor planning in approaching tasks. Expression of frustration, aggression, or withdrawal when faced with difficulties with a task.
- Poor self esteem
If you are concerned that your child may have Sensory Integration Dysfunction you can contact an occupational therapist who specializes in SID for children. I can suggestion a couple of professionals. I also have a checklist to help you determine if your child has SID.
Also check out: The Out of Sync Child by Carol Kranowitz