not so good
Be sensitive to sensory processing disorders in the operatory
B Y BETHANY DURDEN, RDH until much later in their child’s life.
SPD is chronicled in the book, “The Out-of-Sync Child.” As
with other disorders, there are broad ranges of severity. The
American Academy of Pediatrics has not made it its own diagnosis because it often coexists with other disorders. It can
overlap with ADHD and autism spectrum disorder, as well as
Asperger’s syndrome. If a dental clinician is educated about
the disorder, this can help the parent and child achieve success
with the child’s oral health care in the clinical setting and at
home. This article will shed light on the disorder so that dental
clinicians can provide a more stress-free dental visit for
WHAT IS SENSORY PROCESSING DISORDER?
Research on SPD began in the 1960s and 1970s with the work
of neuroscientist and occupational therapist Dr. Anna Jean
Ayres. She described SPD as a neurological “traffic jam” that
prevents the brain from receiving the information necessary
This was not a two-year-old. His mother was talking about
her seven-year-old son who was unnaturally afraid of chairs
that were high, or of any seat that moved. She seemed disgusted
by her son’s fear and was not at all supportive.
“He just needs to get over it,” she exclaimed.
This is an example of someone’s sensory input going awry.
People rely on their senses to provide both good and bad
feedback about their environment. Sometimes this very important system can go awry and problems come up, such as
sensory processing disorder (SPD).
Unlike special needs patients with physical disabilities that
others can easily see, the symptoms of patients with behavioral
disorders such as sensory processing disorder are often not
apparent. This disorder is often not even realized by parents