Signs of Auditory Defensiveness
Auditory defensiveness is an over sensitivity to sounds in the environment. These children hear sounds louder than normal. They may have a flight or fright or freeze reaction to sudden sounds or loud sounds. They may have a non-integrated primitive reflex called Fear Paralysis Reflex or Moro Reflex. Occupational therapy can help them overcome these issues with reflex integration activities, sensory calming therapy, sensory diet plan, and with accommodations to help them in loud environments or school.
Children with auditory defensiveness can present with some or all of the following symptoms:
Seems unsettled or distressed in loud environments or crowds.
Frequently cover their ears to sounds that other children tolerate.
Are bothered by noises made by things like the vacuum cleaners, hair dryers, etc.
Avoids activities that have loud environments such as parties, ballgames, indoor music and movies.
In OT sessions we will do vibration massage mats and neck massagers with sensory calming activities to help the child get used to vibration on their neck and near the ears to help with low frequency bone conduction defensiveness.
Therapeutic deep pressure brushing protocols will be used and shown for home use, for hair cell high frequency sound defensiveness.
Reflex integration is vital for treatment of auditory hypersensitivity and will be demonstrated in therapy for home exercise plans.
Nutrition plays a huge role in auditory hypersensitivity- if a child is deficient in magnesium, essential fatty acids (DHA-Omega 3's), Vitamin A or other vital nutrients they can have heightened neurological/sensory hypersensitivities.
Try these strategies to help children with auditory processing issues in the classroom.
Learn more by visiting www.aitinstitute.org
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