Sensory Processing Problems in Children with Autism or Delays
In cases where a child has a developmental delay – autism is one example – he or she may have trouble understanding their five senses. For example, they can’t filter out background noise & get scared when around it.
Other examples of sensory processing issues are:
- Problems with body position (the child can’t move about easily)
- Oversensitivity to touch (child can’t stand the feel of certain clothing)
- Inability to function in a crowd
When faced with difficulties like these, the recommended approach to help your child learn and improve is called Occupational Therapy (OT).
The Benefits of Occupational Therapy
Occupational Therapy (OT) focuses on improvements in an individual’s daily occupations. For example, your child’s self-help skills, play, making friends, and succeeding in school. Common skills addressed by OT include:
- Daily living skills – toilet training or brushing their teeth
- Sensory Integration – reacting to sounds, reading and writing
- Gross & fine motor control – picking up objects, touch, balance, walking
- Visual motor skills – seeing an object and walking towards it
- Sensory motor skills – problem solving, awareness of his/her body
- Social-emotional skills – play, communication
What does this mean? It means that occupational therapy (OT) helps children build or improve their own social, play, learning, and sensory integration skills.
They learn to play. To get along with others. To understand more of the world around them, and interact with it.
How the Occupational Therapy Process Works
For an individual with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), occupational therapy services are defined according to the individual’s needs and desired goals. OT services for individuals with ASD or other developmental delays include evaluation, intervention, and measurement of outcomes.
A is For Apple’s Occupational Therapists focus on enhancing a child’s participation in (and how they perform):
- Regular daily activities of daily living (e.g., feeding, dressing)
- “Instrumental” activities of daily living (e.g., eating, sleeping, dressing, safety procedures etc.)
- Sensory integration – How well they respond to sounds/voices, prompts, etc.
- Education – Improving their learning skills
- Play and social participation.
Their evaluations are recorded and used to revise the child’s development plan (“IFSP”) over time. You have access to the plan’s reports at all times.
If a child needs more help in one of these areas, additional therapy called “interventions” is used to encourage your child to spend more time working through these skills.
Call A is For Apple for Your Child’s Occupational Therapy
The A is For Apple occupational therapists all hold California licenses in OT. We are also affiliated with the Occupational Therapy Association of California (OTAC) to stay up-to-date on OT practices.
Our therapists collaborate and work as part of comprehensive, clinical team of providers in conducting developmental and educational assessments. Each child has an Occupational Therapist as part of their IFSP team.
Does your child need Occupational Therapy to help them thrive? Contact Us to get started.