Sensory Processing

  1. What is Sensory Processing?
    Sensory processing is the normal neurological process of organizing sensations for our use in everyday life. We use sensations to survive, to satisfy our desires, to learn, and to function smoothly. Our brains receive sensory information from our bodies and surroundings, interpret these messages, and organize our purposeful responses.

    What are the red flags when a child is having sensory processing problem?
    Infants and toddlers

    • Problems eating or sleeping
    • Refuses to go to anyone but their mom for comfort
    • Irritable when being dressed; uncomfortable in clothes
    • Rarely plays with toys
    • Resists cuddling, arches away when held
    • Cannot calm self
    • Floppy or stiff body, motor delays


    • Over-sensitive to touch, noises, smells, other people
    • Difficulty making friends
    • Difficulty dressing, eating, sleeping, and/or toilet training
    • Clumsy; poor motor skills; weak
    • In constant motion; in everyone else’s “face and space”
    • Frequent or long temper tantrums


    • Over-sensitive to touch, noise, smells, other people
    • Easily distracted, fidgety, craves movement; aggressive
    • Easily overwhelmed
    • Difficulty with handwriting or motor activities
    • Difficulty making friends
    • Unaware of pain and/or other people

    Adolescents and adults

    • Over-sensitive to touch, noise, smells, and other people
    • Poor self-esteem; afraid of failing at new tasks
    • Lethargic and slow
    • Always on the go; impulsive; distractible
    • Leaves tasks uncompleted
    • Clumsy, slow, poor motor skills or handwriting
    • Difficulty staying focused
    • Difficulty staying focused at work and in meetings
    • Unmotivated; never seems to get joy from life

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