Does it get worse with age or better?

by AM

My 7 yr old son has always been prone to "tantrums" when faced with a transition time. Turning off TV, time for dinner, change in plans etc. He also will not wear jeans, or really any pants that button- all have to be elastic waist. He constantly chews on things and frequently falls down seemingly on purpose.

We have just dealt with it, although its exhausting, and school has been fine. He is progressing well, no problems...until the last two months.

All of a sudden it seems that all of the things we have dealt with at home, or have thought were his idiosyncrasies are now extremely amplified. He is pushing other kids, hitting them, is argumentative etc. He no longer seems willing to follow the school's behavior code, which he used to love.

I've read thru the check list and he seems to have one or two symptoms in almost every category.

We are seeking help, but now i am more afraid than ever...for all of the people on here whose kids are having severe problems...did it get worse as they aged?? Please let me know

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Nov 27, 2018
The pain of not knowing about SPD
by: Anonymous

I am a grandmother and I am writing this to, hopefully, safe someone from the pain we have been through.

Our 2nd grandson was the sweetest little boy. He always was kind and very humble. He appeared to be perfectly normal, as a matter of fact he crawled, walked and talked quicker than any of the other grands. All through elementary school he made good grades and never got into trouble.

In middle school he did well but, when in the 7th grade, I was helping him with his homework and noticed his terrible penmanship! It was as bad as a first graders! I asked him if the teachers ever said anything to him or how they read it and he said they didn't say anything. I watched him write and he held his hand upside down! I tried to show him how to hold it and he said he tried and tried but it hurt his hand really badly to hold it like that.

Later that week I was talking to my other daughter in law who is a teacher and she said it sounded like he had SPD and probably had needed early intervention with an Occupational Therapist!

My first question was what is SPD and my 2nd was where the heck do you find an Occ. Ther.? She filled me in somewhat and then I looked it up on the net and found that our boy had many symptoms!

He would not wear jeans, only elastic waist sports pants, he hated to hear certain noises such as pencil lead on paper (he always wanted a mechanical pencil) he couldn't stand the feel of sheets so I bought him satin sheets, he went through a stage where he refused to shower until we made him. I had no idea there was a thing like SPD.

After he got into high school he did fine in subjects that he used a computer on but got behind on subjects that he had to take notes in (due to his inability to write legibly.) To make this a bit briefer, he was failing two subjects by the 11th grade and was so upset he wanted to quit school. The family discussed it and we decided to try homeschooling. I had no idea what all that involved and it did not work out.

A school in a neighboring county had classes where you only used a computer and one of his friends was going there. It was day or night school and he decided he might go there. I went with him and got him enrolled on Wednesday and he was to start to class on Monday.

It never happened. Our boy took his life on that Monday.

I constantly feel guilty because we were so naïve about everything going on with this beautiful child.

Please watch your children. I don't know if SPD is what caused it but I feel it played a huge part in it.

We are living in pain and guilt and will never get over this loss.

Dec 24, 2017
SPD at 17
by: Anonymous

My son has SPD and is 17. The symptoms for him have changed through the years. He now wears jeans which I could never get on him. He is ok with other clothing as well. I had spend more money on all kinds of underwear, socks, pants, etc. and nothing worked.

He will explore more with eating now and will try things and is not so brand specific anymore. He still has difficulty regulating himself but if I tell him that his "engine is on high", he usually will become aware of what he is doing and will control himself.

They usually have not idea that they are doing things (such as making noises, tapping things, etc). I have learned to "feed his need" when appropriate.

When making noises, I give him a wad of gum to chew on or have him do oral motor activities. When he was 7 or 8 is when the anger started and became bad. that is when their hormones start to kick in. That is when you need to step up the movement and proprioceptive input.

You as a parent need to not feed into it and push back because they will fight you tooth and nail. Part of it is getting past that threshold so they can tolerate the sensory experience to help them get used to it.

Eventually they will tolerate things more. Hang in there!

Dec 20, 2017
I can get worse
by: Kenneth Schauer

I am a 56 year old with ASD and severe SPD to go with it. It can appear to get better for a time but there is no cure for GENETIC problems.

Mine has been with me all my life but at age 47 I, Like my mother before me went through what they call Midlife autistic regression. Don't fool yourselves, there is NO CURE! There are only lifestyle changes and if you are lucky medications to make yourself more comfortable.

I have read as much on this subject I can, pouring through scholarly articles but there is very little information out there on it. It is believed 10% of people with these conditions go through this but I think the number is higher.

Aug 04, 2014
Update, three years later...
by: Anonymous

Since I initially posted the comment my son has actually improved. My fears at the time did not prove out. It all seemed to peak in 2nd grade but with each year he has improved. He is now 10 and still has some sensory issues but we sought out OT and it helped a lot- found a fantastic place in Southeast MI and he loved it. He is doing much better overall, but we still deal with the quirks that his sensory/ ADHD issues bring to the table -however we feel more in control of it now. He receives OT in school to aid with continued penmanship issues and Therapy outside of school to help with self esteem/social issues. Thank goodness for seamless socks and soft waistband pants!

Aug 02, 2014
by: susan

My 7year old son was diagnosed with sensory issues since age 2. We had to move from North carolina to Texas and now where I live I can not get the proper help he needs. I feel that he is getting worse. He now sticks things in his mouth and he gets fascinated with marks from socks and his underwear. What can I do?

Nov 27, 2013
Spd with age
by: A spd kid

Hello there my name is Alexandra and I have spd your wondering does it get worse with age well the answer is with out proper help it can my best advice is to get occupational therapy it helps a lot you learn copying techniques and they help you if your over sensitive through brushing and help get out energy through play trust me it helps so much I am currently 20 years old now and things are not as bad as they use to be I am so greatfull to my mom for getting me the help I needed

Sep 13, 2011
a similar situation
by: Anonymous

First of all, take a deep breath. The good thing about having a sensory disorder is that there is help that does not involve taking medication. Many children that are diagnosed with ADD actually have a sensory disorder. I have two good friends whose sons have sensory disorders. Our 5 1/2 year old has some symptoms from different sensory categories. He has always had difficulty with change, writing with a pencil, easily distracted by outside stimuli, avoids eye contact. He is very friendly and very happy so we wrote it off as immaturity or quirks. He just started Kindergarten and his teacher has suggested that he be observed and then tested by our county's school district.

I have always known that something wasn't exactly right, but couldn't put my finger on it. I'm relieved to have an idea about what we are dealing with. If I had my druthers, I would prefer this issue than ADHD and putting a young child on stimulant medication. The earlier you get help the better for everyone. Our son did quite well in preschool. The class size was small, he knew what was expected and he had the same teacher for two years. I've seen an increase in behavior issues since Kindergarten began. I'm told that with change comes frustration and the child lets it out at home. You are not alone. Mother's intuition is usually right on. If you suspect something isn't right, than it probably isn't. One of my friends who struggled with not knowing "what is wrong" has educated herself and had occupational therapy for her child. He is like a different kid, and it has only been a year since the diagnosis. Good luck. You are on the right track.

Sep 06, 2011
4 yr old preschooler
by: Anonymous

After reading this article and noticing that my son has more than two symptoms in each of these categories, we are headed to the pediatrician TODAY. I thought that he was having these symptoms due to the death of his father and grandfather whom he was very close to and just trying to adjust to the detachment. But after reading this, some of these symptom existed before they passed away and now have seemed to magnify. Thank you all for your comments and suggestions. His biggest problem now that he is in school is adjusting to transitions in the lessons. Please send more suggestions.

Apr 28, 2011
by: Anon

don't be afraid! you are seeking help and that's the best thing to do when you have concerns. find an occupational therapist that can help you address some of the issues your son is having. if he does in fact have spd, there are SO many things that can be done to help these children! therapies, resources, parenting tip/tools. my son has mild spd and we have benefited greatly from working with an OT over the last 2 years.

i'd be happy to share with you some of the things we've tried or read that have helped us. just let me know if you're interested. and to answer your question, i think the key is to start seeking help for these children so they can be successful and learn to implement the tools they will need to be happy and productive in life.

they are wired just a little bit differently neurologically and so they need a little bit more help some times in relation to emotions, social skills, help learning how to cope with change, boundaries, etc. you're son will be fine! i'm sure he's bright, funny and talented in many ways and you are a parent that is seeking help. you're on the right path! good luck.

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