I could have written your post a year ago. I felt so silly for wanting ds to be assessed for sensory processing disorder by an OT because his issues were so 'mild'. He was just 'off', but only to me. He wasn't so weird that our ped or other people even noticed.
But I went ahead and did it because my gut told me that something wasn't right. And because he is sooo similar in many ways to my brother, who always had unspecified learning difficulties in school - and now I'm sure it's because he couldn't focus because he was too sensitive to all the things going on. He couldn't filter out anything. He was also very late in motor planning (late to ride a bike, not well coordinated at all) - a tall, gawky, sensitive klutz. And then there's my husband, who never goes without socks, who can't wear wool or use wool blankets, who won't eat ANY vegetables because of the taste...
Anyway, the OT was GREAT. She didn't think we were nuts for having him assessed. She found that in some areas (fine motor) he was a bit delayed, but not as much as I thought. But she found other areas (bilateral coordination, motor planning, vestibular sensitivities) where he was considerably behind. I had never noticed that he wouldn't put his head down below his shoulders - so somersaults, bear walking, etc. were out. (OK, maybe I should have had a clue when I tried to wash his hair in the sink and he FREAKED out when I asked him to lean forward, but I thought that was the water
. He couldn't balance to save his life. At last I understood why he was terrified of going crooked on the swings.
The vestibular stuff also explained why he was so terrified of loud noises and so afraid of the dark- our OT explained that he couldn't identify/locate his body very well in space and so the loud noises felt 'on top' of him. He compensates by using his vision, and so being in the dark leaves him without ANY sensory input to figure out where he is. At least now I know why we have to leave the hall light on all night. (Night lights won't do it.)
Originally Posted by Terabith
I'd like to homeschool, but I'm not sure if she will cooperate with that either....
Oh how true here -- I'm actually not sure I'd like to homeschool, but I know it's a moot point because I cannot get ds to cooperate. I am amazed at how the OT can get our son to cooperate in ways that I could NEVER do. Ds has absolutely ZERO desire to complete tasks just to please an adult, and yet he does for our OT. Whatever she does, she places things at a level where it's just within reach of his comfort zone. Ds has a very keen sense of what he can/cannot do, and won't attempt things that he thinks he can't. I wonder if this is related to SPD or just a personality thing?
If the OT is any good, s/he'll give you a Sensory Profile to fill out (we did a long form and then a Short Sensory Profile to indicate areas of probably/definite difference) and then a battery of tests for fine motor, coordination, balance, etc. Our initial appt took about 1 1/2 hrs.
We haven't had him assessed by a developmental ped for Asperger's. I go through periods where I'm CONVINCED he's on the spectrum and then periods where I'm convinced he's not. I'm in one of the latter now, so I'm going to wait and see how he does in 1st grade when we change schools. (And I just found out that one of his K classmates has Asperger's and when I mentioned T's sensory stuff and my worries about Asperger's to his mom, she looked at me and said, "OK, I'm not a doctor, but no way does your son have Asperger's." I'm going to talk more to her about that at some time.)
All of this is a very long way to say - you are right to have her assessed if this is causing you worry. Where ever she ends up being (on/off the spectrum), you'll understand better what you can do to meet her needs.