Struggling with Sensory Processing Disorder?
Can Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD) be treated naturally? Can Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD) symptoms be reduced or gotten rid of altogether, without medication? The answer is, Yes.
The above Brain Map to the right is an example of a Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD) brain pattern. The orange in the middle, over the sensory cortex, indicates the inability of the brain to process sensory information at the proper speed, thus leaving the individual with a heightened sensation of that input. This pattern can make it so that sounds, lights, touch, and interactions with others can cause serious over stimulation. Other children may seek out sensory stimulation to offset a similar pattern.
Neurofeedback training, also called qEEG Biofeedback, can guide that pattern out of its current state and into the better, optimal, pattern that processes input in real time, alleviating sensory processing difficulties.
Children receive and perceive sensory input through our sights, sounds, touches, tastes, smells, movements and balance, body position and muscle control. All of these sensations make-up your child’s sensory processing system which is controlled by your child’s brain. Sensory processing disorder (SPD) impacts kids making it difficult to take in or interpret this input and thus can lead to devastating consequences with interactions with others and daily functioning, social and family relationships, self-esteem, using appropriate behavior and especially learning.
Why Do Kids Seek Out Sensory Input?
- Do you wonder why they are uninhibited – jumping and crashing into anything they can?
- Why puzzles are tricky- writing is challenging – or coordination for riding a bike is off?
- Why loud sounds bother them too much – even vacuums, toilets or hairdryers?
- Why they don’t like to be touched or can’t get enough touch?
- Why they will only eat certain foods and cannot even be around other foods?
- Why they have their “favorite feel” clothing or need you to cut the tags out of their shirts?
- Ever wonder why you can’t seem to calm them down or get them to sleep?
- Why they won’t put their hands in anything messy or use glue, Play Doh, or play with mud?
- Why they fear playground equipment or want to constantly swing?
- Why crowded places bother them so much they end up having a major meltdown?
Types of Processing Disorders:
Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD), or sensory integration dysfunction, has become more prevalent and can cause big issues for kids and families. It is in fact a disorder of Neurological regulation. The sensorimotor areas do not properly utilize information that is coming into the brain and due to weakness of these areas and poor communication between related brain areas children have hyper- (too big) or hypo- (too small) responses to the sensory input. If your child has difficulty with touch, or touches people a lot, likes or dislikes different textures, foods, or smells, has small or large reactions to pain, or adversity to light, s/he is suffering from a sensory processing disorder.
Auditory Processing Disorder (APD), or central auditory processing disorder (CAPD), is seen when a child has the inability to process, interpret, and retain what he hears. Understanding speech in noisy environments becomes almost impossible, similar speech sounds become mixed up, kids fail to follow directions and misunderstand verbal instruction in the classroom. Other auditory processing disorders include tinnitus and misphonia which is where there is a constant ringing or buzzing noise present. Difficulty completing tasks at home and at school results causing anguish for kids who are trying to be successful.
Visual Processing Disorder (VPD) is a manifestation of the brain’s inability to process and interpret what the eyes see. If your child struggles to differentiate between size, shape, and color of objects, confuses written symbols like those used in calculations, misjudges distance, and experiences poor spatial awareness he is suffering from a visual processing disorder. Many times the visuo-spatial deficiencies results in frequent falls or bumping into objects even though the child’s eyes test to be fine.
Solutions in the Brain for Processing Disorders – Neurological Regulation
Neurological Dysregulation occurs when an area or areas of the brain are weakened and not able to perform the job properly. If that dysregulation occurs in the sensorimotor strip, children suffer from Sensory Processing Disorders. The culprit in Auditory Processing Disorder is the auditory cortex of the brain and likewise the visual processing centers are at fault in visual processing disorders. When the affected area of the brain is regulated to work efficiently, the responsibilities of that area become strengthened and symptoms are alleviated.
Your child’s brain is the supercomputer that is running his or her body. When the brain is functioning in an overactive state in the areas that process sensory and motor information, these behaviors result. The symptoms are viewed by most as negative behaviors that the child is performing. The truth is that these sensory seeking or aversion behaviors are a symptom of the underlying problem. Your child is not choosing to act that way, he or she needs to in order to bring a sense of calm to the overactive brain.
At Leigh Brain & Spine we can help. It is important to seek out a doctor with advanced credentials and experience to assess your child’s brain functioning and to take all the variables into account. Call (919) 401-9933 today so you can begin to understand how your child’s brain is functioning and what you can to do to help him or her reach their fullest potential.
- Two SPD types: Under- and over-sensitivity, although your child can experience both.
- Hypersensitive: Your child maybe extremely reactive to sensory stimulation and can find it overwhelming.
- Hyposensitive: Your kids maybe under-sensitive, which makes them want to seek out more sensory stimulation.
Leigh Brain and Spine is proud to have earned the distinction as a Certified Brain Health Coach Center and is a proud member of the Amen Clinics referral network.