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5yo - over sensitive with clothes, tags etc - what to do?

(55 Posts)
olivo Sun 21-Aug-11 10:07:24

The past few months have been hell with DD, just 5, being over sensitive to waistbands, tags, night nappies, shoes/socks - and I dont know what to do. she is very highly strung and cries very easily but she is making getting dressed every day absolute hell - screaming, tearing things off etc.

She hates the seams on socks, tags inside shoes, anything on her waist, the night nappies rub( she then takes them off and wets the bed - we have tried all available brands)

Can anyone suggest anything? I have tried taking clothing tags off but sometimes they leave a but which rubs more. I am dreading her going back to school sad

KitKat84 Sun 21-Aug-11 10:56:09

My 5 y/o DS is the same. His main issue is the cuffs on the sleeves meaning he has refused to wear sweatshirts so I had to go and buy jumpers for school that aren't tight round his wrists. Shoes are the same. You have no idea of the neurotic hissy fits he pulls in the shoe shop. Socks are another issue and he will spend over 10 minutes making sure the seam is perfectly over his toes and then when he puts his shoes on it messes his carefully placed sock again so he throws the shoe off and starts all over again with the sock. I think the most important thing is not to get cross or stressed yourself as that seems to make them worse. I am trying to be firm and say "No, you are wearing this". I also bought some socks that are the next size up and this seems to help - same with pants which DS is constantly fiddling with as "they're going up my bum". I bought age 6-8 and although he still messes with them, it isn't as bad. I hope someone else suggests something!

olivo Sun 21-Aug-11 11:40:20

thank you Kitkat, it is reassuring to know i'm not the only one putting up with this!I do ussually get cross, as it can take 15 mins to get shoes/socks or whatever o nto go out. I too have found bigger socks a bit better but if you find a solution, ket me know! I have found the shorts knickers better for DD, and everything is bigger than her age/size.


KitKat84 Sun 21-Aug-11 19:28:17

I tried boxer shorts with DS but he wouldn't wear those either. The sweatshirt thing really annoyed me, I bought him 3 expensive school sweatshirts with the logo on and he refused to wear them - that was £24 down the toilet grrrr. I find that the jumpers in BHS are good, they are very soft and non restricting although I still have to buy a size up. My poor child looks like he is drowning in all his clothes!
I find he is worse if he is tired or anxious about something. He always seems to be worse on a Monday and Friday morning or if he has PE that day at school (he hates PE!). Distraction often works, if he has something else to focus on then the neurotic hissy fits are less common. I will tell him that if he gets his shoes and socks on quickly then he can eat some raisins on the way to the childminders or ride his scooter to school if he isn't at the childminders that day. Also try not to focus too much attention on him at the 'critical' moments. I avoid watching him and busy myself with my other child or getting the bags ready etc ...
It is bloody frustrating especially when you have to be out the door; there have been days where I have felt like throwing his shoes across the room and shouting "It doesn't bloody matter!!!!!" but I just leave the room, avert my attention and count to 10!
Hopefully it is a phase, albeit, a really long annoying phase!

spudmasher Sun 21-Aug-11 19:34:15

I have a dd like this...she is now 9 and still the same. Also very sensitive to noises, temperature, tastes along with the clothes thing. Thankfully her school is very flexible with the uniform and she wears jogging bottoms and loose t shirts but I was terrified to hear that the school will be enforcing their uniform in September. It causes real problems.
The upside is that she is hyper observant and aware and will probably become an amazing scientist or artist or something that needs sensitivity and awareness. But right now it's quite hard!

KitKat84 Sun 21-Aug-11 19:45:19

I was really hoping it was a phase eek! Thinking about it, DS is funny about taste/food. He only ever eats very bland food, anything with a particular texture or anything with too much flavour is refused. Dinner times are also hard...

I mentioned previously that BHS do a good lose fitting uniform that you may be able to get your dd, depending on how strict her school are of course...

ragged Sun 21-Aug-11 19:48:58

Can she be bribed into getting used to it?
I found that promise of a chocolate raisin suddenly made various clothing items completely tolerable for DS hmm.
It's crazy... but only a few days of a little treat & DS usually gets used to a previously impossible-to-wear item and moves onto complain about something else.

Actually we still have occasional sock or cycle helmet issues, but again... distraction often sorts it for a least a spell.

deaconblue Sun 21-Aug-11 19:55:05

My ds had this and a number of other problems that led to us seeing an occupational therapist. She recommended a brushing technique brushing that changed ds' life. He was so sensitive that if he had something that itched like a label he could pick his skin until it bled. We did the brushing every night and most mornings for about 3 months and saw a gradual improvement in the level of sensitivity. We now no longer brush and he hasn't picked his skin or complained about sensitivity for about 18 months. I don't even need to cut labels out anymore and we got through chicken pox without a single scar.
I don't mean to suggest your dd has sensory processing disorder of course but you might find the technique could help reduce her sensitivity too. It needs to be a surgical brush (I have a spare if you'd like me to post you one). HTH smile

ragged Sun 21-Aug-11 19:56:53

That's really interesting, Shoppingbags. Is it just a soft brush, like a nail brush or bath one?

spudmasher Sun 21-Aug-11 19:59:16

We have spent a more than healthy time in M and s, bhs, next etc fingering and evaluating various fabrics....we have to buy the polo shirts, sweatshirts and fleeces from the school so no choice there. She is of an age now where I can tell her she is sensitive and she understands which is good. Helps to give it words and meanings so she can communicate her feelings effectively. We certainly have less scenes bbut tones of discussion which I guess is good.

deaconblue Sun 21-Aug-11 19:59:22

I was told it needed to be a surgical brush as that has the right type of bristles and is soft enough to not scratch but hard enough to be felt iyswim. Ds loved it too which helped. You have to brush in the direction of the blood flow down the arms and legs quite firmly and follow it with kind of squeezes all along the limbs. I think the link explains it better.

spudmasher Sun 21-Aug-11 20:01:07

That's interesting shoppingbags! I will certainly have a read of that!

olivo Sun 21-Aug-11 20:04:20

shopping bags, that is really interesting. DD is generally very sensitive, and she has big sleeping issues too, based around a separation anxiety type problem. I will have a look at your link.
actually, my DD also has issues with temperature, noise and smell. I think I will try bribery for a while. I have already said that if she can try to use the toilet more, she can be out of night nappies and I will buy her some disney fairies knickers! the school uniform thing is a nightmare, as most of it has to be bought from school, but I am usually to busy to argue in the mornings, getting her and her little sister ready before I go out to work! DH has to deal with the socks/tights and shoes issue!

deaconblue Sun 21-Aug-11 20:14:12

Sensory processing disorder is much more common than I knew. Get the out of synch child from the library, it rang many bells with me as ds is overly sensitive to all the things you guys mention

deaconblue Sun 21-Aug-11 20:15:21

Sync sorry

LeninGrad Sun 21-Aug-11 20:17:01

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

LeninGrad Sun 21-Aug-11 20:17:43

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Portofino Sun 21-Aug-11 20:26:14

Oh my dd is like this. I call it "Princess and the Pea" syndrome. Very, very fussy about clothes - this prickles, this is not comfy, etc etc. She's cold or she's too hot. Very fussy with food. But strangely, when there is something happening that she wants to she'll get dressed and be off. She'll spend all day in a (coldish) pool but fusses over the temperature of the bath water.

Portofino Sun 21-Aug-11 20:27:50

Socks and tights are a huge issue.

olivo Sun 21-Aug-11 20:37:04

no real control issues, as far as i can see- socially, she is fine when i/we are not around, has plenty of friends at school etc. SHe is a nightmare to drop off at school ( much worse for me than DH so he mostly takes her) and won't leave my side at parties etc until we have been there some time, even when her closest friends are tugging at her to go and play. She is excrutiatingly shy with strangers and so can appear quite rude as she wont speak and still hides behind my legs - when she can find room as DD2 is there most of the time!

I must look on that website. porto - that sounds very familiar.

deaconblue Sun 21-Aug-11 20:37:31

Certainly Lenin. Pm me your address and I'll pop it in the post. Just noticed the packaging is split but it hasn't been used.

LeninGrad Sun 21-Aug-11 20:45:28

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

olivo Sun 21-Aug-11 20:47:09

good luck , Lenin. I never know whether DD's habits are something to worry about or totally not. I really hope it is just a phase.......

CaptainNancy Sun 21-Aug-11 20:47:40

Huh- I was going to link this thread for you Len! smile

LeninGrad Sun 21-Aug-11 20:51:54

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

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