Thursday, August 16, 2012

Therapy Thursday: SPD Visual

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 to hear your stories too. Please leave a comment below!

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.

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 Visual Processing Disorder:

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


No comments:

Post a Comment

We would love to hear from you! We encourage you to contact us with further questions as well. Thank you!

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.

Homeschool Helps: Equivalent Fractions FREEBIE

 I know it has been a while since I have posted. Life is crazy, as usual. We are back to homeschooling two of our children this year. Becaus...