Each week I post about some type of therapy we use, who recommended it, and the reason we are using it. Remember, I am not a licensed therapist and I am sharing our experiences. We would love to have you share too. Follow the directions at the end of this post to link up with us.
For the month of August, I am highlighting the different senses that Sensory Processing Disorder affects, a checklist of symptoms and some activities we do to help. We started with proprioception, which is the internal sense of knowing where your body parts are without looking a them. Then we went on to the tactile system, which is how our brain receives information coming from the receptors on our skin about touch, pain and temperature. Last week was the vestibular system, which coordinates movement and balance through receptors in the inner ear and in relation to Earth's gravity.
Sensory Processing Disorder: Visual Sense
The basics of vision: our eyes pick up an image and it is sent to the brain via the optic nerve. Our brain then sorts that information. But there is more to it. Our eyes also have muscles that allow them to move together. Imagine if your eyes were not tracking together and you had two different images going into the brain at the same time. How would you know where to step? Could you follow words across a page? I imagine the world would be a confusing place.
Do you know that feeling when you've been in a dark movie theater, then you walk outside and it is a bright sunny day? You may have a hard time keeping your eyes open. Some children are sensitive to light that way all the time.
Here is the visual portion of the complete sensory processing disorder checklist found on Sensory-Processing-Disorder.com.
Signs Of Visual Input Dysfunction (No Diagnosed Visual Deficit):
1. Hypersensitivity To Visual Input (Over-Responsiveness)
__ sensitive to bright lights; will squint, cover eyes, cry and/or get headaches from the light
__ has difficulty keeping eyes focused on task/activity he/she is working on for an appropriate amount of time
__ easily distracted by other visual stimuli in the room; i.e., movement, decorations, toys, windows, doorways etc.
__ has difficulty in bright colorful rooms or a dimly lit room
__ rubs his/her eyes, has watery eyes or gets headaches after reading or watching TV
__ avoids eye contact
__ enjoys playing in the dark
2. Hyposensitivity To Visual Input (Under-Responsive Or Difficulty With Tracking, Discrimination, Or Perception):
__ has difficulty telling the difference between similar printed letters or figures; i.e., p & q, b & d, + and x, or square and rectangle
__ has a hard time seeing the "big picture"; i.e., focuses on the details or patterns within the picture
__ has difficulty locating items among other items; i.e., papers on a desk, clothes in a drawer, items on a grocery shelf, or toys in a bin/toy box
__ often loses place when copying from a book or the chalkboard
__ difficulty controlling eye movement to track and follow moving objects
__ has difficulty telling the difference between different colors, shapes, and sizes
__ often loses his/her place while reading or doing math problems
__ makes reversals in words or letters when copying, or reads words backwards; i.e., "was" for "saw" and "no" for "on" after first grade
__ complains about "seeing double"
__ difficulty finding differences in pictures, words, symbols, or objects
__ difficulty with consistent spacing and size of letters during writing and/or lining up numbers in math problems
__ difficulty with jigsaw puzzles, copying shapes, and/or cutting/tracing along a line
__ tends to write at a slant (up or down hill) on a page
__ confuses left and right
__ fatigues easily with schoolwork
__ difficulty judging spatial relationships in the environment; i.e., bumps into objects/people or missteps on curbs and stairs
If your child has been newly diagnosed, an online support that I have thoroughly enjoyed is the SPD Blogger Network. It is a community blog, written by parents of children with SPD. I laugh and cry as I read the stories of other parents who are also in the trenches.
Here is a video on how vision problems can interfere:
A couple of our boys have vision problems/sensitivities. James is supposed to be having surgery soon to correct his eye muscle so that both of his eyes will "see" together and he won't have to tilt his head. He is also light sensitive and requests his sunglasses when going outside.
For schoolwork I have found that it is much easier if he has a box to write or stamp each letter in. This also applies to math. Our older daughter did much better in solving math problems with using graph paper so each number had it's own box.
|Worksheet by Confessionsofahomeschooler.com|
You can find me on youTube, Instagram and Facebook as Diverging Lives, or Twitter @ndeleon007.
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