Courtney Dickinson, an experienced Sensory Integration and Praxis Test (SIPT) certified pediatric OT provides tons of useful tips, tricks, and strategies to help support teens and older children with sensory issues. This series focuses on tips and ideas to target the different sensory systems as well as general considerations for working with this population.
SENSORY ISSUES: TRICKS AND TIPS FOR TEENS AND OLDER KIDS – Eventually little kids with sensory needs grow into big kids with sensory needs. How do kids’ sensory needs change over time and how can we adapt our approaches to accommodate for these changes? This post offers general considerations and tips for working with the teen and “older kid” population.
TEENS, OLDER KIDS, AND SENSORY PROCESSING: THE AUDITORY SYSTEM – Depending on your teen’s unique sensory profile, different types of auditory input may be alerting, energizing, distracting or disorganizing to his or her nervous system. Learn more about the auditory system and how it affects teens and older kids.
SENSORY ISSUES AND TEENS: MOVEMENT – The vestibular system and the proprioceptive system. Together these two systems help lay the foundation for body awareness, position in space, and motor skills and contribute to an overall sense of organization and well-being in the world. Learn more about how teens process movement.
TACTILE STRATEGIES AND ACTIVITIES FOR TEENAGERS – Do you have a teen that constantly needs to touch everything and maybe everyone? Does your teen only prefer certain types of clothing or have difficulty dressing appropriately for the weather? Does he not appear to notice when he is messy or dirty? Does she avoid or appear over-reactive to grooming activities such as haircuts, showers and nail cutting or dental appointments? These are all characteristics that can be related to either an hyper-responsive (overly responsive) or hypo-responsive (under-responsive) tactile system.
OLFACTORY AND ORAL SENSORY STRATEGIES FOR TEENS – Is your teen a picky eater? Does he constantly add hot sauces or spices to his foods? Do smells easily bother her? Does he seem to constantly need something in his mouth? If some of these behaviors sound familiar, your teen may be having difficulties with oral sensory and/or olfactory (smell) processing.