Friday, January 27, 2017

How to help my hypersensitive child

Many children experience hypersensitivity to touch or sound, with or without being diagnosed ADHD. Your child is not fussy and this is not a disease. Your children may just need some training for their wonderful brains to learn how to filter the overwhelming quantity of information they are receiving from the environment. And you can help a lot.
  • Does your child frequently complain about how rash are his or her clothes?
  • Does your child avoid playing with mud?
  • Does your child avoid walking barefoot?
  • Does your child complain when he or she feels the wind on his or her face?
  • Does your child get anxious when his or hands or clothes get dirty?
  • Does your child dislike how the sun feels on the skin even on cold days?
  • Is your child reluctant to walk on uneven surfaces?

Hypersensitive children may look like if they were shy or a little frightened. These children's brain may need a little help to "filter" the quantity of information it (the brain) is receiving, to then design and “command” the right physical response for their bodies. 
There are 3 Tips I always recommend to help hypersensitive children, to help their brains self-regulate while nurturing their self-confidence:

1) Respect your child. Don’t force him or her to do something they don’t feel comfortable with. This means: if they don’t want to walk barefoot on the beach, don’t nag them

2) Inspire your child to experience new sensations. Offer new delightful experiences for your child’s touch:
  • Cover your windows with shaving foam and make hand prints
  • Do some wall-art with washable painting. Use only fingers, hands, and feet, no brushes
  • Clean your car with your child, use soft soap and sponges
  • Give some bare hand massage to the chocolate chip cookie dough. If your child is reluctant to this massage, ask your child to help you get the chocolate chips out the dough 
  • Make some mud pies under the rain: get soaked together and laugh loudly
  • Invite your child to bury your feet in the sand. Then ask your child to bury his or her own fee
  • Ask your child to help you serve the jell-O with his or her bare hands, without any utensils
  • Ask your child to help you decorate the T-shirt you are wearing. Show your child how funny it is to get some stains on our clothes. You can handwash it later together.

3) Help them structure little processes. For example, how would you explain to your child how to wash his or her hands?:

Step 1: Roll back your sleeves
Step 2: Get some soap on your hands
Step 3: Get your hands wet
Step 4: Rub your hands
Step 5: Rinse your hands
Step 6: Dry your hands

Explaining simple processes to him or her and encouraging your child to follow them will help his or her brain to start creating an “organized response”. 
Everything we do can be explained as a process. Do this exercise: Which is the process you need to follow to brush your teeth? To set the table? To make a sandwich? To get dressed? The more simple processes you explain and help your child follow, the better and faster your child’s brain will self-regulate. You can add complexity to the processes little by little, always in a positive attitude to strengthen your child's self-confidence. But there is an important component in this equation: This has to be fun!

Children learn a lot faster when they are having fun.  

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