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aversion to being restrained

(4 Posts)
eeniemeenieminiemoe2014 Thu 08-Jun-17 21:08:06

dd is under assessment for autism and one of the things I have really noticed is an aversion to anything to restrain her.

Im not talking upset Im talking hysterical until removed including being sick from the screaming. this goes for reins, car seats, push chairs, being held on to, nappy changes the works. she is also a bolter so I need a way of keeping her safe or Im going to have to stop leaving the house.

I cant work out if its a genuine sensory issue or not..the only reins I can get her to wear she undoes and bolts. she can escape her car seat and the pushchair.

I feel so trapped and I dont feel like they are tantrums but are instead genuine fear. she always screams ow when anything holds her down.

what the hell do I do?

eeniemeenieminiemoe2014 Thu 08-Jun-17 21:12:12

should add she has always had a problem with being restrained since about 5 months old. she also wont wear hats or masks

littledinaco Fri 09-Jun-17 07:52:35

Hi, I posted on your other thread too. I hope you get some more advice from the SN boards.

If your DD has had a problem since 5 months old, I would say it sounds like a genuine sensory issue.

If she has got sensory processing difficulties, there is a lot you can do. A good start is an OT with sensory intergration who can assess your DD and find out what areas she is over and under responsive in. They can give you a 'sensory diet' which is basically activities to do at home which you'll just do through play so could just be things like getting a cart of heavy books for her to pull or playing a game where you put deep pressure touch all over her.
OTs with SI are limited on the NHS and you will probably wait a long time so if you can, I would go private just for an assessment and they can give you the sensory diet to follow.

In terms of getting her to tolerate the reigns/car seat, etc in the meantime, will she tolerate having her back/chest rubbed or massaged? If you can do this before you put her in, it can sometimes work to 'desensitise' and make the car seat,etc not as distressing for her. With SPD, her brain won't be registering the car seat straps as straps but as something really painful or distressing to her, hence the extreme reactions.

Obviously you can't not leave the house or not strap her in the car seat so maybe minimise the other things that she finds distressing so if she doesn't like getting dressed/hair/teeth for example, could you go in the car first thing in her pyjamas so the only thing she has to cope with is the car seat. (Leave hair/teeth etc until you get home).
Try to avoid busy places such as supermarket, town centres, busy parks as this will all contribute to sensory overload. It sometimes sort of 'builds up' in their system making other activists (even on a different day) more difficult.

www.sensory-processing-disorder.com/sensory-processing-disorder-checklist.html
This is a good checklist to look at SPD.

OneInEight Fri 09-Jun-17 07:53:36

Almost certainly a sensory issue. One thing you could try is different weights. ds2 in particular dislikes intensely light touch but can tolerate much better firm touch so she might tolerate for instance a weighted backpack better than reins or perhaps a weighted blanket or pad might help when she is in the push chair. If you could get a referral to an occupational therapist they may be able to suggest ideas to tackle the problem. In our experience sensory issues are far worse when the ds's are anxious so perhaps you could try and get her used to the reins inside the house (or where she feels safe) before taking her out somewhere where she might feel anxious.

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