Can younger siblings also have SPD? What can I do about my oldest son's regression?

by Lynn Grodi

I have 2 sons, ages 9 and 3. My 3 year old, Tyler, is showing some of the same symptoms as my older son, Alex, did at his age. Not liking certain clothing, saying they are hurting him, but he has also seen and heard Alex saying these same things. I don't know if he is copying Alex or if he really does have some issues that I need to check in to. What do you suggest I do?

I also have another concern about Alex. He has been diagnosed with SPD. He has had Occupational Therapy for this. I also had to brush him, his O.T. taught me how to do this. He had been released from O.T. because he had made so much progress. It has been about 5 months since he has had O.T. I have started to notice some regression in his touch issues. I have not been brushing him since he was released from O.T. Do you think he would again benefit from the brushing if I started to brush him again? Also, do you know where I could buy a new brush for him, his old one is starting to fall apart?

The SPD Help Line Answers...

Given the huge age difference between the two boys, my gut tells me your younger son is not just copying the older one. More likely, it is that he is walking the same road of SPD. It is VERY common to have SPD in more than one family member! (We are still trying to prove the genetic link, but there certainly appears to be one!!) And, I would take his issues and words seriously. A trained OT will be able to tell, and yes, I would think about an evaluation.

First, I would fill out the Infant/Toddler SPD Checklist,

as well as the regular SPD Symptom Checklist. This will give you a more "objective" opinion on whether he is struggling with SPD symptoms and how much it may be interfering with his daily life (and yours). I would use these as your basis for determining if he needs an evaluation. If you are not sure, feel free to put the symptoms here and we can help you decide whether an evaluation is warranted. I would take these checklists with you to your Pediatrician (IF he is willing to listen and give a referral for OT) and/or the OT Alex was seeing.

Now, as for the regression with Alex? I would contact his OT he was seeing and let her know about it!! He may need to come back for a "tune up", and let her decide if you should start the brushing again. It is not uncommon for this to happen during times of stress or certain developmental ages and stages. It wouldn't hurt to try the brushing again... many do this as times warrant it. But, I would definitely suggest calling his OT to see what she has to say, as she knows him best and may want to see him a few times again.

There are new brushes now and they are nice!! You can find one at; the newest brush is called the "therapressure brush" and you will see it near the bottom of the page (it is a newer design).

Another question... has Alex ever done any programs like Therapeutic Listening? This seems to help many kids as well! And may be something his therapist would suggest to try at home at this point??

I hope this helps answer your questions. Let us know if you need anything else. Anyone else have any input? Comment below!

Take care.
Michele Mitchell

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Apr 18, 2011
Therapeutic listening
by: Anonymous


My son just started Therapeutic Listening and he seems to have tantrums a lot more than usual. His OT is on vacation and I want to know if it is common.

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