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Recognizing Signs of Sensory Processing Problems

Sometimes the signs of sensory-based problems are not so obvious. It's easy to spot when there's a huge tantrum over a clothing tab, or flat-out refusal to eat anything crunchy. But what if it's not so apparent? Signs of sensory issues can also be seen in motor delays. Think about it...it's probably going to be hard to move if you're not feeling things so well! Delays in learning to ride a bike, handwriting problems, clumsiness, and a "funny looking" gait can all be indications that a child is not feeling the world as it is, and therefore can't move through the world easily either.

Another "hidden" sensory problem can come from a kind of sixth sense that we all have. We all know our 5 major senses, but did you know that we have a sense that helps up perceive gravity, as well? This is our vestibular sense, and it also helps us perceive curved and straight movements of our head. This is a system that is ALWAYS on, and therefore very impactful in how it helps us perceive our surroundings. Even a small weakness in our vestibular sense can cause enough fellings of disorientation to cause behaviors that our commonly associated with sensory issues.

Maybe your child has another diagnosis and a sensory problem is part of it, or contributing to it? Sensory problems can easily affect attention in an ADHD child who's already having difficulty with attention. Imagine how distracting it owuld be to constantly feel bothered by meaningless, everyday senses! The shirt on our back...the clock on the wall...the smell of a teacher's perfume...the hum of an air conditioner....Sometimes these distractions are actually because of a sensory problem, not because a child is inattentive! Knowing the difference is really important because of course the treatment strategy would be different.

At Connections Achievement and Therapy Center we specialize in just that. We have a team that can help you figure out if a sensory issue - or some other issue - is behind your child's difficulties. And, more importantly, we can be part of your team that helps to solve the problem. 

Please contact us if you're questioning if a sensory processing problem might be affecting your child's performance. Visit connectionsatc.com 


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  • ""Before we found Connections, we had tried everything for our son - OT, PT, nutrition, other chiropractors, ST, aquatic therapy . . . we were at our wit's end and ready to resign ourselves to having a son with Asperger's. Dinner time was chaos, he was violent towards me and my daughter, and tantrums were a daily tribulation."
    8yo, Asperger's
  • "Here is what we have seen in Sarah since June 2012:

    Improved balance and coordination – can now walk the entire driveway without holding onto my hand

    Greatly improved vision. Sarah could not match anything accurately before – the items were beside, under, “close by” but never matched right on top. Thanks!"
    18yo, CP and Autism
  • "Aley suffered from constant headaches and focus issues for a year after receiving a concussion in her sporting event. After seeing multiple medical professionals the only options presented to us were medications for the headaches and ADHD medication for the attention and focus issues. We were blessed to casually run into Dr. Jackson. After therapy at Connections Aley is now headache free and has no issues with focusing. Her processing and reaction time have also improved greatly!"
    Teenager, Post Concussion