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Sensory Issues?

(6 Posts)
supercal Thu 23-Jun-11 10:40:51

Hi
I put this in the 'Parents with Disabilities' section but have had no response, and can see that it's not a fast-moving topic. So I have put this in here, I hope you don't mind. I'd be very grateful for any responses.

I've seen references on MN to people having sensory issues. I can guess what that means, although don't know definitively.

However, I am wondering if I have sensory issues.

I hate being touched sometimes unless I know it's going to happen. I like to be touched in a specific way. I get VERY stressed if I get touched in a certain way - e.g. short strokes as opposed to long strokes. It feels almost painful and I have the urge to lash out violently to get the person away from me.

Yesterday at song group, a mother sat down next to me with her three kids, when there wasn't really space. Her youngest then kept accidentally kicking and knocking into me. I was getting incredibly stressed and didn't say anything because I knew I would sound too angry. If she comes to sit beside me again though, I will move though, as it really spoilt my enjoyment. What annoyed me most was that the mother didn't notice.

I also get very stressed by very loud noise, like my child having a screaming tantrum. When he does this, I sometimes have to leave the house (always when DH is there) so that I can calm down and control myself.

Does this sound like sensory issues?

I'd appreciate any guidance.

mum0fthree Thu 23-Jun-11 11:02:54

Yes it does, ds has sensory problems processing disorder. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sensory_processing_disorder

Sensory issues can include
Visual - flickering lights, bright lights, tracking movement, etc
Auditory - loud noises, difficulty concentrating on conversation when there is background noise.
Tactile - Touch, heat, cold
Proprioceptive - sensory info recieved through muscles and joints.
Gustatory/oral - includes taste.

You can be hypo/or hyper under or oversensitive and it can be a mix so you could be oversensitive to some things and under to others.

These can lead to sensory overload i.e having to leave the house when baby is screaming.

I am not sure what help is out there tbh there isn't really any for children. You could try a private OT to assess and they can make some suggestions, this is all we have for ds although the OT was NHS.

I also have tactile problems I cannot bear light touch on my arms feel vile, after 11 years you would think dh has learned not to do it but oh no.

amberlight Thu 23-Jun-11 13:22:55

Supercal, definitely, yes.

dolfrog Thu 23-Jun-11 14:44:07

supercal

following on from mum0fthree Wikipedia source you could also have a look at this 2009 research paper Perspectives on Sensory Processing Disorder: A Call for Translational Research
which is included in a collection of Sensory Processing Disorder research paper i have put together. And there is a lively Sensory Integration Group which you can join, which is now 8 years old

supercal Thu 23-Jun-11 23:55:55

Thank you so much all

I feel - I dunno. A bit overwhelmed, a bit relieved.
It feels a good fit for me. I hate light touch. I have been known to come out of a massage in a murderous mood because I didn't enjoy it.

Not quite sure where I go from here though? Do I need a diagnosis? I'm assuming not. Is there treatment or stuff that can help, given I'm an adult?!
I will join the Sensory Integration Group - thanks for that, dolfrog

amberlight Fri 24-Jun-11 09:03:42

Depends if you think a diagnosis would add anything to your life.
I have major sensory sensitivities related to autism and I've found my own ways round things, but you may well find answers through specific therapies and methods. I find I'm absolutely ok with touch if a) I know it's about to happen and b) it's from someone I trust and c) it's done in a way I can cope with. So a gentle slow hug from a loved one is great, but a quick social-hug from a stranger can be like being punched - it hurts that much (because the brain wiring is temporarily overloaded and sort of gives itself an electric shock, as far as I can tell from research). For me, learning what works and what doesn't, and explaining that to people in my life, has helped.

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