Sensory processing disorder, also known as sensory integration dysfuntcion, is a condition that exists when sensory signals do not integrate to provide appropriate responses. Different people experiance a wide range of difficulties when processing input coming from various senses. It is characterized by significant provlems in organizing sensation coming from the body and the enviorment and manifested by difficulties in the performance in one or more areas of life: productivity, leisure and play, or activities of normal everyday living.
Last night I was watching extreme home makeovers on tv. On the tv show, this group of home improvement specialists picks a family who is in need of home improvements that will make their life and home easier to live in. On the episode I watched, the family in need included two parents who were deaf, an older son, and a younger son who was deaf, austistic, and had sensory processing disorder. The show went on to make improvements on the house so that the deaf family members who be able to see flashing lights whenever the fire alarms went off, or if someone entered or left the house. I was most interested in how the home improvement specialists would improve the youngest sons room, who was autistic, deaf and had sensory processing disorder. Since none of the home improvement specialists really understood what it was like to have those disorders, they went and talked to the young boy's teacher. The teacher basically described sensory processing disorder by doing the following. She had one of the specialists sit on a chair, that was very uncomfortable and had little things that would poke the lower half of your body. She also taped an annoying piece of crinkled up paper to the tag of his shirt. Then she would flash strobe lights, and had someone chew gum loudly. While doing that, she had a few people talk directly behind the person sitting in the uncomfortable chair, and then she started to read from a book. After a few minutes of experiancing how hard it must be to stay focused in school, the specialists realized what it was like to have sensory processing disorder. They went back to the house, and really did a great job on the little boys room.
I have included a video on sensory processing disorder, from a childrens view of the disorder.