Sensory Processing has become a common phrase that parents, teachers, and some professionals are using a lot today. It merely refers to how we receive, analyze, and respond to the signals and information in our environment. How our brains process this information serves as the foundation for all of our other developmental skills, whether that be behavioral, social, or emotional. Issues that arise in one of our systems functioning, in either taking in the information, organizing it, or even responding to it, can impact all the other processing areas in our brains and, ultimately, affect how we are acting every day.
There are eight sensory systems that we are continually using to processing all the information that comes to us from the environment:
Visual Processing: how the brain receives and interprets sights
Auditory Processing: this is how the brain receives and interprets sound
Olfactory Processing: how the brain receives and interprets smells
Gustatory Processing: how the brain receives and interprets taste
Tactile Processing: how the brain receives and interprets touch
Proprioceptive Processing: this is our awareness of our bodies in space
Vestibular Processing: how the brain receives and interprets balance, coordination, and spatial awareness
Interoception: how the brain receives and interprets internal organ signals
When children are struggling with processing information through their senses, the symptoms can often look similar to behavioral and emotional issues. These behaviors can even lead to the label of having attentional or focusing problems or even ADHD. This label occurs because they are in an overloaded state of trying to take in all the information and maintain defense mechanisms while simultaneously trying to utilize any coping strategies, they have to cope with the overload they are facing.
This can be hard for even many adults! Needless to say, this is also the point when most parents start to feel as if they are overwhelmed themselves.
We know that you, as a parent, will face so many of these struggles and, at times, feel as if no one else can relate. We are here to help be that resource for you to achieve understanding and acquire solutions to get through some of the obstacles that are challenging you to have smoother transitions, fewer meltdowns, and, most importantly, helping you feel as empowered as possible!
Click here to set up a FREE One-on-One Consultation today to see what strategies can help you and your child overcome the sensory challenges you are seeing.
About the author:
Melissa Bianchini is a licensed clinical social worker in New York and the owner and executive director at Sensory Stepping Stones, LLC. Her career has spanned over 20 years working with children and families around neurological processing concerns, stress-related trauma, and anxiety. Her passion in life is to make a difference in the lives of kids and families that she works with. It has led her spirit to create a facility that facilitates a holistic approach to overall health, wellness, and processing development for those 3 through 93 years young! To unwind and reconnect, Melissa enjoys spending time at home with her husband, Damian, and her dogs and cats, exercising, eating chocolate (of course!), and doing anything that involves nature!