Sensory Disorder?

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-29-2007
Sensory Disorder?
Thu, 03-29-2007 - 9:53am

hi there! o was hoping to get some insight from some btdt mamas.

lately i've been noticing more & mroe quirks with my son ethan. i'm not sure if it's just a quirk, or more than that .... i'm calling his ped this afternoon to make an appoinment to discuss it with her, but was wondering if anyone had any insight before, that i could take with me. he will be two in may.

since he was born, i've been worried about him, i don't know why, but i've always had this weird feeling. :/ ethan has always hated his hair being combed. he cries, says it hurts (even when i've barely touched his head). he doesn't like shirts being put on/taken off, again, says it hurts his head.

he doesn't eat many foods, i'm assuming because of the texture. as soon as certain foods touch his tounge (cottage cheese, cantelope...), he whines for someone to get it out of his mouth. of course he eats chips, pirate's booty, whole wheat crackers, peanut butter, broccoli is a fave, rice, pasta, cheese sometimes .... then again, he doesn't eat much of it - but he'll eat those things, usually.

often, he claims foods are too hot when he puts them in his mouth, even if they are just barely above room temperature.

hair cuts/nail clipping impossible. they all "hurt."

he's been fighting me a lot lately to get diapers & clothes on. i've noticed sometimes he's just tired, and takes a nap shortly after, and then i put a diaper on him, but sometimes it is really impossible to get him dressed. the few times i've had to force clothes on him (due to dr. appts & such), it wasn't pretty.

lately he's become a pretty crappy sleeper, too. he was always up 10x a night to nurse, but always went right back to sleep. he's been getting up sometimes at night, and demanding i come downstairs to rock him.

one of my biggest worries though is how much he doesn't eat. i'm thinking it may be because he snacks all night with nursing, so i'd really like to night wean to see if it improves during the day ... but he's not thrilled with the idea. yawn.

His speech is getting better. I was worried about it for a while, because he spoke later than his 3y/o big sister, but it's been getting better, and he's been putting two words together more & more lately, along with saying two syllable words.

he's been ultra sensitive lately, and i guess has always been a sensitive kid. he does okay in social settings, but yesterday started hysterically crying when his friend the same age gave him a hug.

a lot of these things soudn like normal toddler things, but all together they worry me. :/


iVillage Member
Registered: 06-25-2003
Fri, 03-30-2007 - 9:02pm


You may want to cross-post this on the Sensory Integration Disorder board as well

Both my kids had significant sensory issues, and both benefitted from Occupational Therapy -DD moreso than DS.


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iVillage Member
Registered: 04-07-2003
Thu, 03-29-2007 - 10:14pm

You can also have sensory issues without having the autism. My 10yo ds -- also Ethan -- had a lot of sensory problems as an infant/toddler that he's mostly grown out of now, tho' he still has some things that bother him. He HATES brushing/having his hair brushed, like you said. He also just hates the feel of hair on his head, esp if it starts to touch his ears. Last year he told me his hair was getting too long and asked if he could cut it. I thought he just meant trim around the ears until he could get a haircut like he'd done a time before. Oh no, he cut big clumps of hair all over his head. He looked like a goof, but it didn't bother him at all because it felt good!

He used to hate the feel of grass, many foods (he'd suck the flavor out of certain foods like rice casserole, but then couldn't figure out how to chew the rice -- it was just a texture that bothered him), loose dirt or hairs touching his skin (he'd make gagging noises), etc. He didn't used to be able to wear button up shirts (can barely tolerate them now for Sundays), and he hated tags in his clothing. He had eczema as an infant/toddler and still tends towards sensitivities/allergies to various things. He was also a poor sleeper. He was very clingy and hated being separated from me, even to be with close friends.

He had delayed speech for which he received speech therapy (but ironically, we didn't get speech therapy for his Asperger's brother 'cus AS ds was more laid back than Ethan, so we didn't think it was a problem). He repeated kindergarten because he couldn't remember his ABCs (though he's in advanced classes now). He's probably ADD or ADHD.

This same ds is now my easiest child (still energetic, but easy by comparison)! He's outgrown many of his sensitivities, he does well in school, he's very independent and confident, etc.

Early intervention is still a good thing for decreasing sensory problems and making sure there are no other issues, but some kids do out grow their sensory challenges. My Asperger's kids still have many of their sensory problems, but at least my previously most sensory-affected child has outgrown most of his issues.

iVillage Member
Registered: 06-02-2004
Thu, 03-29-2007 - 3:44pm

I don't know how helpful this is, but my advice would be to follow your mother's instinct. If you feel that something isn't quite right, then it wouldn't hurt to have an evaluation done. I agree that at the toddler age, it is hard to seperate the normal toddler behavior from potential "red flags". That being said, I wish that I had listened to my heart sooner. I wanted to believe that maybe I was reading too much into things and so I believed Lily's ECI therapists who told me that she smiled too much to have autism. Had I know about how broad the autism spectrum is, I would have had her evaluated sooner. In my opinion, it doesn't hurt to have the eval done. If there is an issue, then your child can get help sooner rather than later and if there isn't anything to be concerned about, then you can put your mind at ease. HTH

Amy~Natalie & Lily's mom