Posted by: Indonesian Children | April 25, 2009

Sensory Processing Disorder Checklist: Signs And Symptoms Of Dysfunction

 

Signs Of Tactile Dysfunction:


 

Hypersensitivity To Touch (Tactile Defensiveness)

 

__ becomes fearful, anxious or aggressive with light or unexpected touch

__ as an infant, did/does not like to be held or cuddled; may arch back, cry, and pull away

__ distressed when diaper is being, or needs to be, changed

__ appears fearful of, or avoids standing in close proximity to other people or peers (especially in lines)

__ becomes frightened when touched from behind or by someone/something they can not see (such as under a blanket)

__ complains about having hair brushed; may be very picky about using a particular brush

__ bothered by rough bed sheets (i.e., if old and “bumpy”)

__ avoids group situations for fear of the unexpected touch

__ resists friendly or affectionate touch from anyone besides parents or siblings (and sometimes them too!)

__ dislikes kisses, will “wipe off” place where kissed

__ prefers hugs

__ a raindrop, water from the shower, or wind blowing on the skin may feel like torture and produce adverse and avoidance reactions

__ may overreact to minor cuts, scrapes, and or bug bites

__ avoids touching certain textures of material (blankets, rugs, stuffed animals)

__ refuses to wear new or stiff clothes, clothes with rough textures, turtlenecks, jeans, hats, or belts, etc.

__ avoids using hands for play

__ avoids/dislikes/aversive to “messy play”, i.e., sand, mud, water, glue, glitter, playdoh, slime, shaving cream/funny foam etc.

__ will be distressed by dirty hands and want to wipe or wash them frequently

__ excessively ticklish

__ distressed by seams in socks and may refuse to wear them

__ distressed by clothes rubbing on skin; may want to wear shorts and short sleeves year round, toddlers may prefer to be naked and pull diapers and clothes off constantly

__ or, may want to wear long sleeve shirts and long pants year round to avoid having skin exposed

__ distressed about having face washed

__ distressed about having hair, toenails, or fingernails cut

__ resists brushing teeth and is extremely fearful of the dentist

__ is a picky eater, only eating certain tastes and textures; mixed textures tend to be avoided as well as hot or cold foods; resists trying new foods

__ may refuse to walk barefoot on grass or sand

__ may walk on toes only

2. Hyposensitivity To Touch (Under-Responsive):

 

__ may crave touch, needs to touch everything and everyone

__ is not aware of being touched/bumped unless done with extreme force or intensity

__ is not bothered by injuries, like cuts and bruises, and shows no distress with shots (may even say they love getting shots!)

__ may not be aware that hands or face are dirty or feel his/her nose running

__ may be self-abusive; pinching, biting, or banging his own head

__ mouths objects excessively

__ frequently hurts other children or pets while playing

__ repeatedly touches surfaces or objects that are soothing (i.e., blanket)

__ seeks out surfaces and textures that provide strong tactile feedback

__ thoroughly enjoys and seeks out messy play

__ craves vibrating or strong sensory input

__ has a preference and craving for excessively spicy, sweet, sour, or salty foods


 

Poor Tactile Perception And Discrimination:

 

__ has difficulty with fine motor tasks such as buttoning, zipping, and fastening clothes

__ may not be able to identify which part of their body was touched if they were not looking

__ may be afraid of the dark

__ may be a messy dresser; looks disheveled, does not notice pants are twisted, shirt is half un tucked, shoes are untied, one pant leg is up and one is down, etc.

__ has difficulty using scissors, crayons, or silverware

__ continues to mouth objects to explore them even after age two

__ has difficulty figuring out physical characteristics of objects; shape, size, texture, temperature, weight, etc.

__ may not be able to identify objects by feel, uses vision to help; such as, reaching into backpack or desk to retrieve an item



Vestibular Sense: input from the inner ear about equilibrium, gravitational changes, movement experiences, and position in space.

 

Signs Of Vestibular Dysfunction:

 

Hypersensitivity To Movement (Over-Responsive):

 


__ avoids/dislikes playground equipment; i.e., swings, ladders, slides, or merry-go-rounds

__ prefers sedentary tasks, moves slowly and cautiously, avoids taking risks, and may appear “wimpy”

__ avoids/dislikes elevators and escalators; may prefer sitting while they are on them or, actually get motion sickness from them

__ may physically cling to an adult they trust

__ may appear terrified of falling even when there is no real risk of it

__ afraid of heights, even the height of a curb or step

__ fearful of feet leaving the ground

__ fearful of going up or down stairs or walking on uneven surfaces

__ afraid of being tipped upside down, sideways or backwards; will strongly resist getting hair washed over the sink

__ startles if someone else moves them; i.e., pushing his/her chair closer to the table

__ as an infant, may never have liked baby swings or jumpers

__ may be fearful of, and have difficulty riding a bike, jumping, hopping, or balancing on one foot (especially if eyes are closed)

__ may have disliked being placed on stomach as an infant

__ loses balance easily and may appear clumsy

__ fearful of activities which require good balance

__ avoids rapid or rotating movements

 

Hyposensitivity To Movement (Under-Responsive):

 

__ in constant motion, can’t seem to sit still

__ craves fast, spinning, and/or intense movement experiences

__ loves being tossed in the air

__ could spin for hours and never appear to be dizzy

__ loves the fast, intense, and/or scary rides at amusement parks

__ always jumping on furniture, trampolines, spinning in a swivel chair, or getting into upside down positions

__ loves to swing as high as possible and for long periods of time

__ is a “thrill-seeker”; dangerous at times

__ always running, jumping, hopping etc. instead of walking

__ rocks body, shakes leg, or head while sitting

__ likes sudden or quick movements, such as, going over a big bump in the car or on a bike

 

Poor Muscle Tone And/Or Coordination:

 

__ has a limp, “floppy” body

__ frequently slumps, lies down, and/or leans head on hand or arm while working at his/her desk

__ difficulty simultaneously lifting head, arms, and legs off the floor while lying on stomach (“superman” position)

__ often sits in a “W sit” position on the floor to stabilize body

__ fatigues easily!

__ compensates for “looseness” by grasping objects tightly

__ difficulty turning doorknobs, handles, opening and closing items

__ difficulty catching him/her self if falling

__ difficulty getting dressed and doing fasteners, zippers, and buttons

__ may have never crawled as an baby

__ has poor body awareness; bumps into things, knocks things over, trips, and/or appears clumsy

__ poor gross motor skills; jumping, catching a ball, jumping jacks, climbing a ladder etc.

__ poor fine motor skills; difficulty using “tools”, such as pencils, silverware, combs, scissors etc.

__ may appear ambidextrous, frequently switching hands for coloring, cutting, writing etc.; does not have an established hand preference/dominance by 4 or 5 years old

__ has difficulty licking an ice cream cone

__ seems to be unsure about how to move body during movement, for example, stepping over something

__ difficulty learning exercise or dance steps



Proprioceptive Sense: input from the muscles and joints about body position, weight, pressure, stretch, movement, and changes in position in space.

 

Signs Of Proprioceptive Dysfunction:

 

Sensory Seeking Behaviors:

 

__ seeks out jumping, bumping, and crashing activities

__ stomps feet when walking

__ kicks his/her feet on floor or chair while sitting at desk/table

__ bites or sucks on fingers and/or frequently cracks his/her knuckles

__ loves to be tightly wrapped in many or weighted blankets, especially at bedtime

__ prefers clothes (and belts, hoods, shoelaces) to be as tight as possible

__ loves/seeks out “squishing” activities

__ enjoys bear hugs

__ excessive banging on/with toys and objects

__ loves “roughhousing” and tackling/wrestling games

__ frequently falls on floor intentionally

__ would jump on a trampoline for hours on end

__ grinds his/her teeth throughout the day

__ loves pushing/pulling/dragging objects

__ loves jumping off furniture or from high places

__ frequently hits, bumps or pushes other children

__ chews on pens, straws, shirt sleeves etc.

 


2. Difficulty With “Grading Of Movement”:

 


__ misjudges how much to flex and extend muscles during tasks/activities (i.e., putting arms into sleeves or climbing)

__ difficulty regulating pressure when writing/drawing; may be too light to see or so hard the tip of writing utensil breaks

__ written work is messy and he/she often rips the paper when erasing

__ always seems to be breaking objects and toys

__ misjudges the weight of an object, such as a glass of juice, picking it up with too much force sending it flying or spilling, or with too little force and complaining about objects being too heavy

__ may not understand the idea of “heavy” or “light”; would not be able to hold two objects and tell you which weighs more

__ seems to do everything with too much force; i.e., walking, slamming doors, pressing things too hard, slamming objects down

__ plays with animals with too much force, often hurting them



Signs Of Auditory Dysfunction: (no diagnosed hearing problem)

 

Hypersensitivity To Sounds (Auditory Defensiveness):

 

__ distracted by sounds not normally noticed by others; i.e., humming of lights or refrigerators, fans, heaters, or clocks ticking

__ fearful of the sound of a flushing toilet (especially in public bathrooms), vacuum, hairdryer, squeaky shoes, or a dog barking

__ started with or distracted by loud or unexpected sounds

__ bothered/distracted by background environmental sounds; i.e., lawn mowing or outside construction

__ frequently asks people to be quiet; i.e., stop making noise, talking, or singing

__ runs away, cries, and/or covers ears with loud or unexpected sounds

__ may refuse to go to movie theaters, parades, skating rinks, musical concerts etc.

__ may decide whether they like certain people by the sound of their voice

 

Hyposensitivity To Sounds (Under-Registers):

 

__ often does not respond to verbal cues or to name being called

__ appears to “make noise for noise’s sake”

__ loves excessively loud music or TV

__ seems to have difficulty understanding or remembering what was said

__ appears oblivious to certain sounds

__ appears confused about where a sound is coming from

__ talks self through a task, often out loud

__ had little or no vocalizing or babbling as an infant

__ needs directions repeated often, or will say, “What?” frequently



Signs Of Oral Input Dysfunction:

 

Hypersensitivity To Oral Input (Oral Defensiveness):

 

__ picky eater, often with extreme food preferences; i.e., limited repertoire of foods, picky about brands, resistive to trying new foods or restaurants, and may not eat at other people’s houses)

__ may only eat “soft” or pureed foods past 24 months of age

__ may gag with textured foods

__ has difficulty with sucking, chewing, and swallowing; may choke or have a fear of choking

__ resists/refuses/extremely fearful of going to the dentist or having dental work done

__ may only eat hot or cold foods

__ refuses to lick envelopes, stamps, or stickers because of their taste

__ dislikes or complains about toothpaste and mouthwash

__ avoids seasoned, spicy, sweet, sour or salty foods; prefers bland foods

 

Hyposensitivity To Oral Input (Under-Registers)

 

__ may lick, taste, or chew on inedible objects

__ prefers foods with intense flavor; i.e., excessively spicy, sweet, sour, or salty

__ excessive drooling past the teething stage

__ frequently chews on hair, shirt, or fingers

__ constantly putting objects in mouth past the toddler years

__ acts as if all foods taste the same

__ can never get enough condiments or seasonings on his/her food

__ loves vibrating toothbrushes and even trips to the dentist



Signs Of Olfactory Dysfunction (Smells):

 

Hypersensitivity To Smells (Over-Responsive):

 

__ reacts negatively to, or dislikes smells which do not usually bother, or get noticed, by other people

__ tells other people (or talks about) how bad or funny they smell

__ refuses to eat certain foods because of their smell

__ offended and/or nauseated by bathroom odors or personal hygiene smells

__ bothered/irritated by smell of perfume or cologne

__ bothered by household or cooking smells

__ may refuse to play at someone’s house because of the way it smells

__ decides whether he/she likes someone or some place by the way it smells

 

Hyposensitivity To Smells (Under-Responsive):

 

__ has difficulty discriminating unpleasant odors

__ may drink or eat things that are poisonous because they do not notice the noxious smell

__ unable to identify smells from scratch ‘n sniff stickers

__ does not notice odors that others usually complain about

__ fails to notice or ignores unpleasant odors

__ makes excessive use of smelling when introduced to objects, people, or places

__ uses smell to interact with objects



Signs Of Visual Input Dysfunction (No Diagnosed Visual Deficit):

 

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

 

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



Auditory-Language Processing Dysfunction:

 

__ unable to locate the source of a sound

__ difficulty identifying people’s voices

__ difficulty discriminating between sounds/words; i.e., “dare” and “dear”

__ difficulty filtering out other sounds while trying to pay attention to one person talking

__ bothered by loud, sudden, metallic, or high-pitched sounds

__ difficulty attending to, understanding, and remembering what is said or read; often asks for directions to be repeated and may only be able to understand or follow two sequential directions at a time

__ looks at others to/for reassurance before answering

__ difficulty putting ideas into words (written or verbal)

__ often talks out of turn or “off topic”

__ if not understood, has difficulty re-phrasing; may get frustrated, angry, and give up

__ difficulty reading, especially out loud (may also be dyslexic)

__ difficulty articulating and speaking clearly

__ ability to speak often improves after intense movement



Social, Emotional, Play, And Self-Regulation Dysfunction:

 

Social:

 

__ difficulty getting along with peers

__ prefers playing by self with objects or toys rather than with people

__ does not interact reciprocally with peers or adults; hard to have a “meaningful” two-way conversation

__ self-abusive or abusive to others

__ others have a hard time interpreting child’s cues, needs, or emotions

__ does not seek out connections with familiar people

 

Emotional:

 

__ difficulty accepting changes in routine (to the point of tantrums)

__ gets easily frustrated

__ often impulsive

__ functions best in small group or individually

__ variable and quickly changing moods; prone to outbursts and tantrums

__ prefers to play on the outside, away from groups, or just be an observer

__ avoids eye contact

__ difficulty appropriately making needs known

 

Play:

 

__ difficulty with imitative play (over 10 months)

__ wanders aimlessly without purposeful play or exploration (over 15 months)

__ needs adult guidance to play, difficulty playing independently (over 18 months)

__ participates in repetitive play for hours; i.e., lining up toys cars, blocks, watching one movie over and over etc.

 

Self-Regulation:

 

__ excessive irritability, fussiness or colic as an infant

__ can’t calm or soothe self through pacifier, comfort object, or caregiver

__ can’t go from sleeping to awake without distress

__ requires excessive help from caregiver to fall asleep; i.e., rubbing back or head, rocking, long walks, or car rides

 

Internal  Regulation (The Interoceptive Sense):

 

__ becoming too hot or too cold sooner than others in the same environments; may not appear to ever get cold/hot, may not be able to maintain body temperature effectively

__ difficulty in extreme temperatures or going from one extreme to another (i.e., winter, summer, going from air conditioning to outside heat, a heated house to the cold outside)

__ respiration that is too fast, too slow, or cannot switch from one to the other easily as the body demands an appropriate respiratory response

__ heart rate that speeds up or slows down too fast or too slow based on the demands imposed on it

__ respiration and heart rate that takes longer than what is expected to slow down during or after exertion or fear

__ severe/several mood swings throughout the day (angry to happy in short periods of time, perhaps without visible cause)

__ unpredictable state of arousal or inability to control arousal level (hyper to lethargic, quickly, vacillating between the two; over stimulated to under stimulated, within hours or days, depending on activity and setting, etc.)

__ frequent constipation or diarrhea, or mixed during the same day or over a few days

__ difficulty with potty training; does not seem to know when he/she has to go (i.e., cannot feel the necessary sensation that bowel or bladder are full

__ unable to regulate thirst; always thirsty, never thirsty, or oscillates back and forth

__ unable to regulate hunger; eats all the time, won’t eat at all, unable to feel full/hungry

__ unable to regulate appetite; has little to no appetite and/or will be “starving” one minute then full two bites later, then back to hungry again (prone to eating disorders and/or failure to thrive)

 

 

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CLINIC FOR CHILDREN

Yudhasmara Foundation

JL Taman Bendungan Asahan 5 Jakarta Indonesia 102010

phone : 62(021) 70081995 – 5703646

http://childrenclinic.wordpress.com/

 

 

 

Clinical and Editor in Chief :

DR WIDODO JUDARWANTO

email : judarwanto@gmail.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Copyright © 2009, Clinic For Children Information Education Network. All rights reserved.

 


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