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why do ASD kids love water, dirt, sand etc??

(23 Posts)
mamadadawahwah Sun 10-Jul-05 15:51:38

My ds loves water of any kind. Puddles on the road, sinks, bottles of water, toilets.

What gives with that. Is this a sensory thing? Are your asd kids like this??? What does it mean? Is this a defo Autistic thing? or a sensory thing? I have been searching for this answer in books and to date no answers.

Jimjams Sun 10-Jul-05 16:07:14

Mine doesn't like it. If he gets a tiny drop of water on his clothes he screams and strips off. Used to go ape when it rained on his shoes. Would refuse to goo anywhere near a beach (sand). wouldn't walk on grass even when wearing shoes.

misdee Sun 10-Jul-05 16:48:09

its a kid thing.

MarsLady Sun 10-Jul-05 16:50:31

my children have no special needs but have all been fascinated with water in all its forms. DT2 currently lives on a diet of dirt, sand and water. Seems my cooking really is that bad!

misdee Sun 10-Jul-05 16:51:35

usual cry round her is 'GET OUT OF MY FLOWERBEDS!!!'

MarsLady Sun 10-Jul-05 16:54:20

Misdee.... they must be twins. Am forever yelling that at DT2. His particular favs are geraniums currently. Did have a real fondness for daffs for a while. lol

misdee Sun 10-Jul-05 16:57:14

ScummyMummy Sun 10-Jul-05 17:19:04

Think it's actually v common for children with ASD to hate water/dirt/sand as well, mamadadawahwah. I have memories of trying to persuade a 4 y.o. to dip just the tip of his finger into a little puddle of water. He made me feel like a torturer, such was his fastidious disgust! Have also met lots of children with autism fascinated by taps though. Perhaps there's a sensory explanation for both scenbarios?

ScummyMummy Sun 10-Jul-05 17:19:53

scenarios, even

Twiglett Sun 10-Jul-05 17:20:57

NT children love water, dirt, sand etc

ScummyMummy Sun 10-Jul-05 17:26:51

True enough, twig. But I do think some kids with ASD have a kind of fascination with it (or conversely an avoidance of it) that's a bit different in kind. I've seen kids with ASD staring at water dripping from a tap fascinatedly for a v long time, for example.

Davros Sun 10-Jul-05 17:29:10

Unlike NT children though this is a classic example of what seems to be a typical behaviour BUT children with ASD stay at it far longer than an NT child, do not have the variety or ways of "playing" with something and do not progress onto the next stage. Many ASD behaviours are the same as NT behaviours except for the intensity and inability to move on iyswim. Its also true that many children with ASD HATE dirt, wet etc, not my DS though (you should see what used to be our garden )

Aero Sun 10-Jul-05 17:33:05

Judging by the state my lot are in at the moment and the fact that they spent all yesterday afternoon playing in the mud after we lifted the garden path, I am convinced most kids love mud, water, sand etc. Mine have no particular special needs as such.

Twiglett Sun 10-Jul-05 17:33:46

yes .. wasn't being naive just think that if you have a recent dx it is quite easy to focus on everything as a problem and lose sight of the fact that some things are just what children do ...

Jimjams Sun 10-Jul-05 17:38:56

scummy and davros have hit the nail on the head (different ones). an autistic fascination often isn't play. And despite ds1 being exactly as scummy describes he has an absolute fascination with sinks and taps. WHY do they always have sinks in assessment rooms? No chance of assessing him when there's a new sink there.

Jimjams Sun 10-Jul-05 17:39:41

I don't think ds1 does anything that NT children do Twiglett. Nope can't think of anything.....

Davros Sun 10-Jul-05 17:42:40

It is true Twiglet that sometimes something is "just play" and not ASD behaviour. Its very hard to predict which one is going to be which and decide whether to tackle it or not either way. Have to say though, like Jimjams, most of DS's behaviour is pretty ASD most of the time.

Jimjams Sun 10-Jul-05 17:48:17

I used to hate it when those in denial (family members in the main- pre and post dx) would say "well that's just kids isn't it" when he was for example screaming the place down because the front door had to stay open because workmen were coming in and out (now we don't mix workmen and ds1- so that was years go) and I would be thinking "???? no! it's not!"

Twiglett Sun 10-Jul-05 17:49:58

sorry, feel I've crossed the line somewhat here into the kind of person I dislike (the 'that's just kids' type)... .. not like me usually I hope

redsky Sun 10-Jul-05 17:52:06

Not my ds - he hated the feeling of anything 'not solid' especially water, sand, grass. One of my worst memories is me trying to get ds to play with finger paints. OOOHHHH the shame I feel now at the memories .

But I also remember going to enormous lengths to help him saw wood. I seem to remember he spent days and days aged about 4 sawing broom handles into 2inch lengths to satisfy some inner craving -and me trying to ensure he did it safely! (I think I did some things 'right' with him but an awful lot I got 'wrong' - but hey ho I guess that's motherhood for you!!!)

coppertop Sun 10-Jul-05 18:31:45

Ds1 absolutely hated getting dirt of any kind on his hands. He liked tipping dry sand out of containers endlessly but that was about it. The day when he first touched shaving foam at pre-school was such a big occasion that we all stopped and stared open-mouthed. The other parent helper probably thought we were insane or something. He is now much happier about getting dirty but there are still certain textures he won't touch, eg wet clay.

Ds2 is happy to get his hands dirty but likes them to be washed soon after. He loves the sandbox but again will rush straight to the sink to wash off any grains of sand. He loves playing with water though. He will concentrate for more than an hour if given a bucket of water to play with.

Davros Sun 10-Jul-05 19:40:56

Don't worry Twiggers, that's just Mumsnetters, "normal" mums don't talk about these things much but we can do it to excess

eidsvold Mon 11-Jul-05 00:06:31

My dd1 loves water - absolutely loves it.. she poured out the dregs of a coffee cup she found on the back patio and proceeded to try and swim in it!!!

Do know a little boy who has autism ( at playgroup) who hates getting anything on his hands and like ct said - the day her actually put his hands in shaving cream - we all cheered.... along with the first time he picked up a sponge to sponge paint, wore his art smock!!

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