Can children older than age 7 benefit from an OT?

by Gina

My son is 8 years old and I have long felt that he had some sensory issues due to some eccentric behaviors and subtle things he does that I can't really explain. Most of the time he can fit in with the world (which is probably why he is age 8 and I am just finally banging my head against a wall in frustration) but some days he'll be more off kilter, showing more frustration, agitation and behavioral problems more than usual. He will have meltdowns over minor things and has trouble really keeping friends but really does try. I don't think he is autistic. I have a brother with autism and he really does not act like him at all. I used to be afraid it might be Aspergers but aside from trouble making friends he really does not fit that criteria either.

Last year we had the school evaluate him and the OT who evaluated him definitely picked up on sensory issues and he is on an ED plan receiving services once a week for 30 minutes. My husband and I thought we would try out the school OT first and see how he did. I think she is doing a wonderful job with him but I fear it is still not enough. I really want to seek outside help in addition to what he gets in school. Of course going through insurance is a nightmare but I will pay out of pocket if necessary to get him officially evaluated.

Some questions I have are:

If we are finally able to get him officially diagnose with SI can therapy help at his older age?

Is an evaluation costly if we do have to pay for it ourselves?

I know SI can't be cured but can it help my son adjust more to his world? I am feeling so depressed and frustrated at this point not knowing what will happen long term for my son.

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Aug 28, 2010
older kids can benefit from OT
by: Anonymous

I have a 9 year old and a 6 1/2 year old. My 6 1/2 year old has auditory processing disorder with sensory disorder. We have have sought outside help for my 6 year old. Testing is expensive, but worth finding out what your child is dealing with.We have been blessed to have found an OT through our church who is willing to work with our son. She has him working with the Neuronet program. She has also taught us how to work with him at home and what would be beneficial for him. Most of the therapy is the parent working with the child daily. Without that, it's hard to see any kind of improvement. We also have a 9 year old who we have been seeing a counselor for anxiety. He too exhibits sensory issues. The OT for our youngest recommended putting our 9 year old on the Neuronet program and seeing if that helps with any sensory issues. So, no it's not to late for older kids. The sooner the better for therapy, but I believe any time is a good time for therapy if there is an issue. I would recommend looking into Neuronet therapy, it's not widely accepted yet, but it is definitely helping us. Best wishes.

Aug 27, 2010
yes yes yes
by: marisa

My 9 year old son has high functioning autism, ADD and sensory issues, which usually go hand in hand with autism. BUT you can sensory without autism.

The school in my opinion really doesn't do enough sensory stuff with him and I think it's really geared towards tasks for school and how he needs help while he's there. You should find an outside agency to help you and your son as well.

I also have a 4 year old with sensory only and I do therapy at home with him myself. I researched and asked his OT what we can do at home because it will not help him if it isn't done at home too. That is our experience.

Ask the OT what you can be doing at home too. It should be hand in hand.

We contacted our regional center because he has autism too and are trying to get help with social groups too. Ask around to other parents for resources or call you insurance and ask.

Good luck to you

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