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Physiotherapy for Sensory Processing Disorder

Physiotherapists are often involved in the treatment of individuals with Sensory Processing Disorder. Some individuals with this condition will have difficulty executing fine and gross motor skills effectively.

Physiotherapy can help to support, improve and develop any fine or gross motor difficulties experienced as a result of Sensory Processing disorder. The physiotherapist will offer individualised treatment programmes which will be tailored to the specific needs and abilities of the individual.

During the first initial Physiotherapy session, individuals will have their fine and gross motor skills assessed. Any problems or difficulties highlighted here will then be used as the basis of any treatment plans.

Physio intervention - balance/co-ordination

OT intervention - balance co-ordination

The severity of motor problems is normally dependant on the type of Sensory Processing Disorder the individual has. Some children will have disordered balance and core stability, with others experiencing difficulty executing motor planning, organisation, and sequencing. These problems can lead to an awkward gait and clumsy appearance. As well as helping to improve gross motor coordination, Physiotherapy will help to strengthen muscle control and keeping the child active. Physiotherapy can also incorporate vestibular input and stimulate somatosensory pathways of proprioception throughout treatment sessions. This can be done by using a variety of equipment with varying surface textures. Motor skill training normally consists of physical education and movement education. Individuals who have not experienced height, touch or movement with comfort will be able to be gradually introduced to these so that they can become happier and more confident during these activities.

If the individual with Sensory Processing Disorder has difficulty with fine motor skills, the Physiotherapist can incorporate fine motor tasks in to treatment sessions, including handwriting. It is important that whatever the goal of the treatment is, interventions should be fun and often play therapy is a good way to ensure the child is motivated to participate.

All treatments performed will be dependent on the individual and the problems/difficulties they are experiencing.

Physiotherapy can be highly beneficial for individuals with Sensory Processing Disorder. If you feel you would benefit from physiotherapy and would like to arrange an assessment with one of our physiotherapists, please contact us by emailing or calling 0330 088 6693.

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