Common Signs: Sensory Processing Issues

Sensory Smart Play

Very simple activities like haircuts can be very overstimulating to a child with SPD.

Puddles can be fun to some but to others, the inconsistent nature of the weather can cause much discomfort.

Sensory overwhelm while in the tub.

The feeling of sand on the hands or feet can throw a sensory child into a tailspin.

Day's at the beach can be much more difficult with sensory sensitive children.

Messy crafts can be overwhelming to a child with SPD.

Stepping on grass, with or without shoes, can be very uncomfortable to a sensory alert child.

Cold, hot, all temperature extremes can be challenging for a child with sensory issues.

Swing high, swing low...great sensory input can be found in most basic parks.

Common Signs of Sensory Processing Issues
Unusual underreactions or overreactions to touch, sounds, sights, movement, tastes, or smells, including: 
  • Bothered by clothing fabrics, labels, tags, etc. 
  • Distressed by light touch or unexpected touch 
  • Dislikes getting messy 
  • Resists grooming activities
  • Very sensitive to sounds (volume, quality, or pitch)
  • Squints, blinks, or rubs eyes frequently 
  • Bothered by lights or visual pattern
  • High activity level or very sedentary
  • Unusually high or low pain threshold 
  • Deliberately bumps into people and things
  • Inappropriate biting, licking, and touching people and objects
  • Poor focus, highly distractable
  • Difficulty handling transitions, rigidity about change
  • Poor regulation of energy level and mood
  • Easily overstimulated or uncomfortable in group settings
  • Difficulty with self-confidence and independence
  • Anxiety about everyday sensations
  • Very high or low activity level
  • Withdraws or refuses to participate, tunes out what’s happening
  • Impulsivity, particularly with seeking sensations
Motor skill and body awareness difficulties, including:
  • Fine motor delays (difficulty with crayons, buttons/snaps, beading, scissors) 
  • Gross motor delays (difficulty walking without tripping, running, climbing stairs, catching a ball) 
  • Illegible handwriting 
  • Moves awkwardly or seems clumsy  
  • Low or high muscle tone
  • Difficulty recognizing when they need to urinate or move their bowls
Oral motor and feeding problems, including:
  • Oral hypersensitivity
  • Frequent drooling or gagging 
  • “Picky eating” 
  • Speech and language delays
  • Poor attention and focus
  • Not being able to tell if they're hungry or full
Many children are particular about sensory input, and mild sensory issues may be outgrown by the time they are adults.
When a person’s sensory issues are so intense that they interfere with everyday living—learning, playing, socializing, and so on—he has sensory processing disorder and intervention is needed. A child with sensory issues has responses to such experiences that are way out of proportion, consistently showing behaviors that can’t be dismissed as age-appropriate.
BUY Raising a Sensory Smart Child and learn more about helping your child who has sensory processing issues. 



Click Below for more information on sensory specific age groups