It’s weird, wonderful and extremely challenging at times.
Cameron has always been a naturally warm person, hands and feet all clammy and I put this down to why he used to strip off to his nappies/boxer shorts.
As Cameron’s speech and development grew he was able to communicate much more with me and he told me one day that his clothes feel scratchy and would direct my hand to where the tags or threads were on his clothes.
I quickly removed all labels to help this sensation. He also told me one day when I put shorts on him that the pants were broken and he pulled his socks as far up as he could to try and cover the exposed skin.
So Cameron is a severe nail biter, all the lotions and potions never worked or bribery or anything......
..until a support worker introduced a fidget toy for him.
He replaced the nail biting with this toy for a period of time. Cameron also has three big blankets on his bed that he won’t go to sleep without, I mean he sleeps in his boxers and has the fan on ALL year round but he needs his blankets for the sensation they provide.
He also stomps around everywhere we go, so heavy footed the amount of pairs of school shoes we have had...... AND he is the loudest child EVER!!
I found myself so focused with school in trying to meet their expectations and get Cameron to where he needed to try and be achieving academically that I realised at a meeting only earlier this year that I had overlooked a fundamental part of something affecting my child.
When I started listing these “quirks” I realised that Cameron must have a form of Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD).
This is where some people are over sensitive to things in their environment.
People can have SPD without being on the autistic spectrum but a high percentage of people with autism have SPD hand in hand, as is our case.
Here are a few website links that you can start your journey of discovery:
https://www.sensorysmarts.com/sensory-checklist.pdf - complete the sensory checklist and see how your child fairs, you may be surprised.
http://www.friendshipcircle.org/blog/2012/05/10/11-more-tips-for-dressing-your-sensory-sensitive-child/ - an excellent article for tips on dressing your child with sensory issues
http://www.sensory-processing-disorder.com/ - an excellent website covering various areas of the sensory disorder
Many mainstream stores now sell items such as seamless underwear and soft touch material. I used to layer Cameron’s clothing so it was easy to peel off the layers.
There are chew and fidget toys available to purchase and also sensory weighted blankets all of these items have helped us so much already, I hope you find this useful.