7 year old...Does she have SPD?

by Mom of 4 girls
(Oregon)

I have a 7 year old daughter who has always loved life. Very energetic and has always "walks to a different beat" than the rest of us. We have chalked it up to being just her. Lately people have been talking to me about her which has raised questions in my head.


She chews on everything, pens, pencils, barbie toys, lids to toys, even her bed post is chewed on. Also she loves physical activity. The higher the better. She jumps on everything, steps on everything and even goes down the hallway brushing it or "bouncing" of of the corners. Wrestling and running are too of her favorite things. She has a hard time sitting sit "ants in the pants" unless she is drawing or working on something.

In class she is busy, looking all over "taking it all in" so it seems like she is not getting it but she is one smart cookie. Other moms say it surprises them what all she is retaining since she doesn't look like she is. She also loves to have her belly and back scratched. "Feels like heaven" she says. She has the heart of gold and loves to snuggle and loves helping others. I am so in love with this little girl and want to help her in every way if she needs it. Can you help me and give me some advice? Thanks so much.

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Aug 28, 2010
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She might
by: Anonymous

Hello, your daughter sounds a lot like my 8 year old son. He too is very bright and the teachers say that it looks like he is not paying attention but when they call on him he is always right on the ball with an answer to whatever the question is. The OT at school who evaluated him said he definitely has some auditory, motor planning and visual issues. He is easily distracted and very disorganized too. She has been working with him since last year. I am in the process of trying to get more outside OT help to further help him. I adore my son too and just want him to be happy. It is hard because we have always noticed how quirky he can be. He wants friends but tends to shy away from large groups of kids at recess. He won't play sports either probably due to his low muscle tone and lack of coordination. He does have play dates with other kids and definitely does great on one on one or a just a couple of kids at a time. He does a have a couple of friends but I would love to see him improve in his social skills too.

Good luck with your daughter and maybe see if you can get an official evaluation with an OT who deals with Sensory issues.

Jan 27, 2010
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by: Anonymous

I also have a 7yr old daughter who has just been diagnosed with SPD and one thing the OT picked up on with the Sensory reports done by the school and by me is that she is an angel at school but I get the backlash when she gets home. Keep watching - do you need a label to your daughter unless it all gets too much either at school or at home. The only reason I got my daughter assessed was because the school recommended she was looked at because she has severe writing issues which is now affecting her self-esteem as she is at the age of noticing all the differences between her and the other girls in her class, she started asking my why she was different. I guess the issue is, is it causing you/her any self-esteem or other problems?

Nov 12, 2009
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by: Anonymous

Your daughter definitely does sound like one smart cookie! She's already figured out instinctively how to regulate her system with jumping and calming herself with chewing! I have 2 kids my oldest has to smell everything before he eats, chews his shirt collars off, and picks at scabs so that little scuffs end up big sores that last a month. Academically he's at the top of his class and seems to have auditory memory that is similar to someone with a photographic memory.

In contrast my second born from 2wks old screamed and cried all the time, it took us years to figure out that it was certain tones that she was hearing. She had an impossible time in the classroom paying attention and instead of running about, would tune-out for a mental break. She has trouble with letter and numbers writing them backwards and takes alot longer to process math problems than the average. She requires extra help and OT but now after alot of work has straight A's, she too is incredibly intelligent.

So my advice to you is to be really diligent that what you are noticing about your daughter isn't something that is affecting her negatively. If she is able to keep up academically and make friends then don't worry. But if you notice that she's not feeling as "smart" as the other kids or if kids avoid her because she's too much to handle, then by all means take your info. to her pediatrician.It seems like all things there are many varying degrees of sensitivities.

Keep educating yourself and use the info. When my child went to OT through our HMO, it was only for 6wks. and everything was taught for us to use at home anyway.Compliment her on knowing what she needs and encourage her to talk about what is helpful when she feels stressed, tired, ect. I wish you the best!

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