Developmental disorders and conditions overlap quite a bit.
Its sort of like one big desert, and medical people try and draw lines in the sand to differentiate...
Because, there is a wide spread of issues and challenges... and combinations.
If you are Aspie or Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD), then it is "not uncommon" for there to be sensory issues, coordination issues, and a raft of other things.
You can have Sensory Integration Disorder (SID) and not be anywhere close to Aspie.
You can have Developmental Coordination Disorder (DCD) and Sensory Integration Disorder (SID) and ADHD and not be Aspie... but ALL of those can be "part of" the Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD)/Aspie dxes.
Officially, if you are Aspie/Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD), the other dxes don't really apply because they are "part of" the definition. But... not all Aspies have all the traits, so it helps to get specific.
Sensory Integration problems often go hand in hand with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD).... It refers to the brain's inability to process sensory information in a typical way. So people with this may not perceive things as strongly or may be overly sensitive to sensory input. Some seek more in some areas and less in others... My son is sensitive to noise/sounds...but certain things he will want louder like sound through earphones... as long as there is no competing sounds (he has some general auditory processing issues so this interferes). He doesn't like touch he is not in charge of but he seeks deep pressure touch and will throw himself on to and into things and not even realize he is hurting himself. He is ESPECIALLY sensitive to smells. and has to lick or put things in his mouth. He also has to touch things...and people. just can make you nuts. Can't have pants or undies that are too tight right now...but a couple of years ago..he would put on 4 pair of undies and three pairs of pants.... for the pressure feeling... Very very strange at times.
Every kid is different, some can't have socks with seams, some hate tie shoes, some only wear sweats, some hate loud sounds some hate breezes on their faces. some over-react to small hurts but dont notice major bumps. some talk way too loudly, some can't stand in lines in case they brush into people. Several of us have kids who are triggered by people with bad breath, and a few of us have said coffee breath makes our kids nuts.
What kinds of things are they talking about with your son???
I agree with Insane. It CAN be a part of the Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) since these kids don't typically process things the same way as neurotypical kids do. As Buddy said, there are MANY different types of sensory input and every person interprets them differently. Sensory Integration Disorder (SID) can also be an additional diagnosis. It all depends on the professionals. So far, difficult child 1's are put under his Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) but the more they dig and the more they find, I think we are getting close to an additional Sensory Integration Disorder (SID) diagnosis. There are sooooo many things that drive difficult child 1 nuts so I won't even get started (that alone could be a book).
What they said...lol.
I never heard of a c hild with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) who didn't also have sensory issues. Either way, Occupational Therapist (OT) is really good for Sensory Integration Disorder (SID) It can be greatly helped. My son really got better as he grew up...with the sensory stuff. At one point he could not listen to July 4th fireworks. I had to stay home with him because the booming noise drove him nuts and he'd cry hysterically. Now he can come with us and just sits in the car to mute the noise.
You may want to do some accomodations in school for his Sensory Integration Disorder (SID)...he may not tolerate noise, crowds or kids brushing against him very well.
in my opinion a sensory integration disorder diagnosis is one of the best, most hopeful diagnosis's to get. Sensory issues can be HUGE. My life is limited because my sensory issues. BUT the therapy for sensory issues never stops amazing me.
Go for a private evaluation if at all possible. they just etnd to be more complete than school evaluations because they look at all parts of his life, not just what causes problems at school.
During thank you's evaluation, I watched my 4yo try to use scissors. Not only was he not succeeding at cutting paper well, he said he was stupid, useless, and other awful things. The Occupational Therapist (OT) didn't say a word, but she started doing gentle joint compressions on his shoulders, neck, while he was working. Suddenly, with NO instruction - verbal or nonverbal - he was cutting on the line, said he was doing a good job, and his entire demeanor and performance changed. Less than 60 seconds of joint compressions changed every facet of what he was doing.
It seemed like MAGIC. But it was DO-ABLE magic, magic we could create in his life.
thank you was a wild child. He could not handle smells, noises, tastes, textures, so many many things. Up to 2nd grade he missed at least 1/4 of every school year. We didn't get into attendance trouble because it was in his 504 that he would be kept home if he was on overload. Poor little guy would come home vibrating. His entire body would shake like he was sitting on top of a dryer because he was in such sensory overload. If I sent him to school he just shut down completely. Those days at home we did NOTHING. He read, watched tv, did whatever he wanted with very very minimal expectations. Some days he ran around with-no clothes on because he couldn't tolerate them touching him. Thank GOD I have sensory issues and have felt that way a few times, so I was able to understand. I have friends with-o sensory problems of their own who have kids with them, and they have so little understanding of how awful the overload can be.
I remember being really shocked when I looked at thank you's 2nd gr report card and realized he missed an entire 9 week period during that year. He missed so much school that it was 47 or 48 days. He is blessed with being super smart because he was still the top student in his class, but it was a lot of school to miss.
If I sent him to school on overload, not only did he shut down emotionally, he often just crawled under something and hid - it was very distressing for his teachers to see. Other students would crawl under to him, put something near him, and back out. The kids were so sweet about it for the most part, but it was better to keep him home those days.
Brushing therapy, letting him do what he needed to do to provide the sensory input he needed, and time has resulted in a happy kid who is amazingly able to cope now. He is in 6th grade, misses little school, doesn't have to hide from the world, and understands his sensory problems. But it took a lot of work to get there.
Sensory issues is a hopeful diagnosis because the brushing/joint compression therapy actually rewires the brain. It creates new pathways for the brain to handle sensory input, which, as it involves NO medications, is a gigantic MIRACLE in my mind.
There are 2 books I recommend. If you cannot afford both, buy the second and borrow the first. the first is The Out of Sync Child and it explains sensory integration disorder and what is going on in the brain wth this diagnosis and the therapy. The second is The Out of Sync Child Has Fun and it is jammed with sensory activities and ways to make them inexpensive. They truly are fun, we are on our second copy because we wore the first copy out. Even though the activities are fun, they are helping retrain the brain and in my opinion are awesome.