Here is a question that I received yesterday for “Talk-2-Me Thursday”:
What do you recommend for a child with Sensory Processing Disorder who is unable to have Occupational Therapy?
Thank you for this question. Wow, this is a hard one because I believe so much in the Occupational Therapy that we have received for Bubs. And there are so many things that I have learned through OT that I was able to immediately implement at home.
These children need structure and consistency. In our case, poor behavior developed because of the sensory. We had to train Bubs what appropriate behavior was. Also, we had to train him how to handle situations where he was out of control. If you are struggling to be consistent or are unsure of what discipline should look like, I highly suggest the book Have a New Kid By Friday by Dr. Kevin Leman. Also, read some of my discipline posts for other things that we have done in our home.
2. Provide sensory input.
A trampoline has saved my life – whether mini or large one with a net. It provided the sensory input that Bubs needed and it provided me with a place to direct him when he was out of control. Days that we know will be difficult for Bubs, start out with seven minutes on the trampoline. It is part of his morning like brushing his teeth. Go to the park, play outside, ride bikes, do a Memory Obstacle Course.
3. Get support and help.
Call the local school system (if your child is going to be attending public school) and ask them for suggestions. Many districts have early childhood programs to help children. Call an OT and ask for suggestions. Talk to your pediatrician. Call a local college to see if there are OT students looking for volunteer hours.
4. Work on one behavior at a time.
Once you begin to give the child sensory input, the behaviors come out strong. Don’t be overwhelmed with the task but take one behavior and focus on that.
5. Create a Team
Although it makes me really frustrated, a child will almost always work better with another adult than their parent especially in frustrating situations. Our OTs can get Bubs to push the limits so much better than I ever could. If possible, find another adult to work with your child.
I don’t say this just to say it. Pray that God would open doors to help. Pray that God would give you wisdom to know how to handle situations that arise. Then watch as He provides.
What other suggestions can you give? Please share!