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Ear defenders being used in first week - not sure what to think

(8 Posts)
Averille Wed 20-Sep-17 17:13:20

I've not posted for a year or two but used to be around quite a lot, and honestly I don't know where to ask about this so hope it is all right to come back : )

I've got three children: the first is reasonably NT (dyslexia, possible dyspraxia - he is 14); the second is autistic and was diagnosed about a year ago, and is 10; and my third is four, and has just begun school.

He has always had some apparent sensory problems; he cried almost solidly for about the first five weeks despite being held all the time (or because of?!) and regularly gets upset about his skin being wet, or clothes that don't feel right, and often gets very upset when we talk over him, or among ourselves, or don't get what he means when he tries to explain.

I have watched him carefully for any problems with his social interaction, and haven't detected any, although he hasn't been to nursery or preschool because he didn't like it much when we tried, and he cried, and I was at home so I just thought I'd leave it a while - and then we couldn't get a place. So he isn't used to a lot of children.

This week (last, really, but he missed most of it because he was ill) he has started in reception, which he seemed happy about initially, but it's got harder - today he said he doesn't like it because of the noise, and to be fair there are a hundred odd children, and it's loud. I know I would find it hard to cope with.

Yesterday, before I was aware of this, they told me that they had used ear defenders for him, because they had played some music and he had got upset and covered his ears saying he didn't like it and it was too loud for him.

He seemed not to mind the ear defenders, and said they had helped. I have a photo of him wearing them, though, and it's outside - so probably not while the music was being played. I don't know if he wore them all morning.

I'm not bothered about his wearing them; what bothers me is that I don't know what the problem might be. I don't think he's autistic - well, not going by his ability to interact, to invent, to play imaginatively and with others, and so on. He is empathetic, thoughtful, and generally a world apart from my middle boy, who is lovely, but very evidently different in many ways.

I wondered if anyone knows what I ought to do - whether it's perhaps something to do with his hearing, or whether I need to have him assessed too for ASD, or if it might be something else.

Also - and the bigger deal, really - I am concerned about him being somewhere every day where he is finding it difficult to cope with the level of noise and number of children around him. I just don't want him to have to bear that; I detested primary school, and was utterly miserable all the way through, and I only know now that I'm probably autistic, but I cannot put a child of mine through that.

There was a chance of a tiny school but we stupidly opted for the big one, and now tiny school is full, and I feel rather stuck.

Sorry for the ramble. I'd be extremely grateful for any thoughts or direction-pointing.


LemonLiz Sun 24-Sep-17 20:02:26

Hi, I could have written this post myself about my dd now in year 1. I've decided to 'watch and wait' and so far she's coping and like you I'm not convinced it's autism (I have an autistic ds). There's no doubt though that she is a 'highly sensitive child' and this book was very helpful- The Highly Sensitive Child: Helping our children thrive when the world overwhelms them by Elaine N. Aron.
Being highly sensitive can look a lot like autism- but ultimately isn't and I think the key differences are as you've described in your post. Get in touch with the school SENCO and see what other measures they can put in place to help him. I'm not an expert of course so if you're still wondering you could start the referral process (it can take a while!) and cancel if needed further down the line. Also, put your ds name on the waiting list for the other school so you've got options should you need them. Good luck reception is tough! smile.

Averille Sun 24-Sep-17 20:27:35

That's such a nice post and I'm really grateful to you for taking the time to reply.
It's good to know I'm not the only one with a hard-to-define child! Also I'm very glad to hear your dd is coping at the moment.
I will look for the book you recommend, too.
Good idea about the referral process - I hadn't thought about doing it that way. I'll try and figure out who the SENCO is and speak to them as soon as poss.
Thanks again for the brilliant advice.

bigarse1 Tue 26-Sep-17 15:03:52

hi have you read up about spd (sensory processing disorder). it sounds like it could be that? x

Averille Tue 26-Sep-17 16:06:16

No, I haven't (not recently, anyway - I think I read about it when my big boy was little!) but I will have a look again. Thanks very much for suggesting it.

bigarse1 Wed 27-Sep-17 08:14:02

no problem. I would be please they are using them. my twins have many issues and have started school and the school are doing nothing. we have started using ear defenders at home this week and cant believe the difference they at emaking x

laurzj82 Wed 15-Nov-17 09:01:48

Yes sounds similar to sensory processing disorder. It is possible to have that but not ASD although NHS won't diagnose. Take a look at the book The Out of Sync Child and see if anything fits

Starlight2345 Sun 03-Dec-17 17:38:11

My son is waiting on sensory profiling..It might be useful for your DC worth looking up.

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