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Sensory Processing Disorder Treatment Mumbai

Types of sensory processing disorder

1. Sensory modulation disorder (SMD)

SMD consists of three subtypes:

  1. Sensory over-responsivity.
  2. Sensory under-responsivity
  3. Sensory craving/seeking.

2. Sensory-based motor disorder (SBMD)

The SBMD subtypes are:

  1. Dyspraxia
  2. Postural disorder

3. Sensory discrimination disorder (SDD)

Sensory discrimination disorder involves the incorrect processing of sensory information.The SDD subtypes are

  1. Visual
  2. Auditory
  3. Tactile
  4. Gustatory (taste)
  5. Olfactory (smell)
  6. Vestibular (balance, head position and movement in space)
  7. Proprioceptive (feeling of where parts of the body are located in space, muscle sensation)
  8. Interoception (inner body sensations).

Individuals with SPD may experience sensory modulation difficulties like over responsivity, meaning they have heightened sensitivity to sensory input. For example, they may be easily overwhelmed by loud noises, bright lights, or certain textures. On the other hand, some individuals may have sensory under-responsivity, where they have a decreased response to sensory input and may appear unresponsive to certain stimuli.

Sensory hypersensitivity/increased sensitivity to sensory inputs :

  • a low pain threshold
  • appearing clumsy
  • fleeing without regard to safety
  • covering eyes or ears frequently
  • picky food preferences or gagging when eating foods of certain textures
  • resisting hugs or sudden touches
  • feeling that soft touches are too hard
  • difficulty controlling their emotions
  • difficulty focusing attention
  • difficulty adapting responses
  • behavior problems

Sensory hyposensitivity/reduced sensitivity to sensory output

  • a high pain threshold
  • bumping into walls
  • touching things
  • putting things into their mouth
  • giving bear hugs
  • crashing into other people or things
  • not regarding personal space
  • rocking and swaying

Additionally, individuals with SPD may struggle with sensory discrimination, which refers to difficulty distinguishing between different types or qualities of sensory stimuli. They may have trouble recognizing and interpreting sensory information accurately.

SPD also includes sensory- based motor difficulties that shows motor output that is disorganized as a result of incorrect processing of sensory information affecting postural control challenges, resulting in postural disorder. This is characterized by impaired coordination of physical movements.

How can an occupational therapist help in sensory processing?

Occupational therapists use various techniques to help individuals develop more effective sensory processing skills.

Sensory integration therapy

This technique involve providing sensory experiences to help individuals become more comfortable with different stimuli.

The main principle of this therapy is to provide targeted sensory experiences in a structured and controlled manner to help the brain better process and respond to sensory input.

By engaging in activities that involve touch, movement, balance, and other senses, sensory integration therapy aims to improve sensory processing abilities. The therapy may include various exercises and techniques such as swinging, jumping, brushing technique, texture exploration, and deep pressure touch etc.

Sensory diet

A “sensory diet” refers to an individualized set of activities designed to support a child’s sensory needs. Example- Animal walks, jumping, deep pressure, listening to music.

Environmental modifications-

Sensory environmental modification refers to making adjustments to the intensity, complexity, or quality of sensory elements in the child’s surrounding physical environment. The purpose of these changes is to enhance the child’s functioning and participation. Example-altering the lighting in the room, soundproofing it, and eliminating any visual distractions.

The ultimate goal is to help individuals develop better sensory integration skills, leading to improved attention, regulation, coordination, and overall functioning, enhance participation in daily activities, and promote a better quality of life.