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  1. #1
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    Default Sensory Issue Questions

    I have some concerns regarding SPD and DS, and I know a ton of you on CC have kids with sensory issues.

    When did you start to notice the sensory issues? Is there a typical age it starts to be most obvious?

    What were the initial signs? Did it get worse with age?


    I've just been doing research via Dr. Google, so of course I'll bring it to the attention of my ped but just thought I'd ask here. Although, we just did have a 2.5 year appt, and I did mention my issues with DS (but didn't specifically say SPD), and our ped wasn't concerned.

    Anyway, DS is 2.5. He was the EASIEST and HAPPIEST baby I've ever seen. At 9 or 10 months, he completely changed and ever since has been super difficult. Extremely stubborn and totally drama. If he doesn't get his way in any form, it's full on crying, and he can cry/scream for what seems like an hour. He sometimes hits when he's not getting his way.

    He did qualify for speech and had a full screen for autism, etc at around 18 months, and he only qualified for speech- no other issues. We stopped speech when the state stopped paying for it because our ped said his speech was on track for his age, and I also wasn't impressed with therapy.

    Our ped says his behavior is normal for a 2.5 year old and that we need to be diligent about discipline AND reward for good behavior (we aren't very good about rewarding). He said his speech is also fine because he has at least 50-100 words (although I think it's a problem that he doesn't have many multi-word phrases since DD was fully talking by now).

    Anyway, lately I'm noticing some of his tantrum behavior seems to be caused by things other than not getting his way. Like the other day, his shoe fell off in the car, and he literally cried the entire 40 minute drive home because his shoe fell off, and I couldn't put it back on because I was driving. My bff said her DD does stuff like that all the time IF she's tired, but it seems strange to me.

    He suddenly HATES baths. He's never loved them and never loved the water on his head, but he used to like to play in the bath after the washing hair part. Now he screams bloody murder when the water goes over his head, and he is SO upset that he wants to immediately get out of the bath. He takes a long time to calm down after a bath.

    This morning, he got upset because I took my robe off (and I rarely wear this robe so it's not like he's used to it or anything) and sort of whimpered until I put it back on, then he was mad because I apparently didn't tie it correctly.

    I read a bunch of different sites about behaviors, and he really doesn't seem to fit the profile, but I'm sure they put the most extreme things online, and maybe he just has a more mild case?

    -He is super social
    -He can be very loving (kissing, etc) and cuddly (i.e. not opposed to touch but doesn't seek it out either)
    -Clothes/tags don't bother him, but he can be picky about what he wears and especially likes to choose his shoes
    -He doesn't like very loud sounds like jack hammering, but DD is actually more sensitive to sound
    -Medium sounds (hairdryer, toilet flushing, etc) don't bother him
    -His tolerance to pain seems normal
    -He does seem clumsy (he pretty much always has a black eye, cut on his forehead or bump on his head), but DD was the same way or worse at his age
    -He's not a "thrill seeker"- just average for a boy- loves to climb the jungle gym (so doesn't mind his feet being off the ground) but would never jump off a high jungle gym or anything
    -He prefers to be outside and active, won't watch much tv, but doesn't do any behaviors like spinning (he does love to jump on the couch but doesn't do it on the ground)
    -Foods don't bother him- he is a great eater- much better than any other 2 year old I know
    -He is an EXCELLENT sleeper. That's the one thing we have going for us- he's difficult during the day, but an angel at night and never ever wakes up!
    -He doesn't mind being messy
    -I haven't noticed crowds bothering him at all, and his preschool class is chaos, and he loves school

    HOWEVER, maybe the things I'm noticing are just the beginning, and some of the other things above that don't seem like a problem now will become a problem, you know?

    Anyway, thank you in advance for your wisdom girls!

  2. #2
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    Default

    I'm sure some of the ladies that have more experience with SPD can chime in, but to ME, everything you listed sounds completely typical for this age. Even something like the shoe falling off, that still is because he's not getting his way. He wanted the shoe on his foot, the shoe didn't do what he wanted (it fell off) and you didn't do what he wanted (put the shoe back on while driving). Toddlers are not exactly known for their rational behavior.

    Maybe this will make you feel better:
    Reasons my kid is crying
    Married: April 20, 2002
    DD: January 25, 2008

  3. #3
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    What you're describing doesn't sound atypical to me. Once my kid screamed and cried all the way home because I drove an alternate route that he said was "wrong". I don't know any kid who likes to have their hair washed.

    Certainly consult your pediatrician if you feel there is more to it, but based on what you're describing here I would just chalk it up to normal behavior.
    Happy & Blessed.

  4. #4
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    Yeah, it could be normal because I will admit that DD is abnormally easy and laid back so of course I compare, but he just seems to be getting more and more upset about weird things.

    Like the bath thing JUST started. No, he never liked getting his hair washed, but he would tolerate it. Now it's complete hysterics and extremely difficult to calm down after- even once he's dried, dressed and on my lap.

    There are other things that have bothered me too that I can't remember that I'll post when I do.

    Thank you for the reassurance though. I may very we'll be reading too much into it, but I'm trying to be as proactive as possible because I don't want him to have problems in school by me ignoring it.

    Thanks!


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  5. #5
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    My DS had a lot of what I would call sensory "quirks" around that age. He's never been diagnosed with anything behavioral wise. He's outgrown most but not all of them. For example, he also hates having water on his head or in his face and he is still like that. He would go through periods where baths caused major tantrums for 2-3 weeks at a time and then just like that he would be over it. He just took his first shower last week and I would call it a success.

    Your son's speech sounds pretty good to me but then again I'm a bad judge because DS' speech was SO delayed (2 words by 30 months).

    If you were going to consider any sort of therapy I would recommend looking into an OT center to have an evaluation done but your son doesn't sound atypical to me.

  6. #6
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    Thanks Diam! Good to know that maybe this bath thing is just a tantrum phase because it's really bothering me and so odd how hysterically he screams like we are hurting him really badly. The neighbors probably think we are beating him, and I'm just trying to get his hair wet!

    Yeah, I'm not too worried about the speech, but he is definitely behind every one of his friends, and school has even said that he is behind in speech. DD spoke so well and so clearly that it's hard not to compare. Although he does have a lot of words and some (up to) 4 word sentences, his speech is not clear at all. Sometimes I have to have DD interpret- she somehow always knows what he is saying!

  7. #7
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    My oldest has SPD. It has been an issue since birth although I didn't really realize it as she was my first. Anyhow, we had her evaluated at 3 and she has seen an OT on and off since then. She is almost 9. Hers are tactile and we have extreme issues around clothing. Her SPD kicks up when she is anxious about something or there is a change coming.

    Your issues sound like a strong willed 2.5 year old who is testing boundaries. I am no expert but it doesn't sound sensory related to me (I've read a ton). I recall my second screaming as if she were being stabbed over baths a while back.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    A&K 05.18.02
    Baby Girl 09.06.05... Angel Baby Oct 2007... Baby Girl 10.21.08
    Be kinder than necessary, for everyone you meet is fighting some kind of battle

  8. #8
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    I kind of tend to agree that it doesn't sound like sensory issues to me, but I'm also no expert. My older son has SPD and is a sensory seeker. He chews on anything and everything, has a high pain tolerance, has a high tolerance to heat/cold, and we see issues with his behavior when he's not receiving enough sensory input. The thing about sensory issues is that it's a spectrum. Everybody has different sensory needs and issues - and maybe bath/water is one of his. It's when they are so much that it gets in the way of life that it becomes a problem. He doesn't sound like he's particularly avoidant or seeking. Although he does sound spirited!

    But to answer your initial questions - we first spoke to the pediatrician at 15 months because of speech/communication issues and he received early intervention services. About a year later, his therapist approached us with the possibility of him having an autism spectrum disorder and we had a thorough evaluation. They found that he was not on the autistic spectrum but that he had SPD instead. In all honestly, I feel that it's gotten better with age, although that might be the result of treatment, all of us knowing his needs better, and general maturity.
    I'm surrounded by boys!
    DH 6/29/02 ~ DS1 3/2/06 ~ DS2 10/15/09

  9. #9
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    Thanks cr8zy and Tracie! It's nice to hear from people that have experience and much more knowledge than I have.

    Quote Originally Posted by cr8zyforaf View Post
    I recall my second screaming as if she were being stabbed over baths a while back.
    Sorry, but this totally made me laugh!

  10. #10
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    DD did that with baths too. I kind of blocked it out until I read this. She didn't love having water on her head as a baby/toddler but around 2.5-3 she completely flipped out about it. That last maybe a couple of months? I don't remember exactly, it seemed endless at the time. I think it just happens to some kids at whatever point it is they realize they have some control over what's happening to them. I think the shoe thing sounds typical too, although understandably annoying.
    isabella noelle :: 12.7.09

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