What is Sensory Defensiveness?

Updated: Oct 19, 2018



originally written for and published on Harkla.co

AN OVERVIEW OF SENSORY INTEGRATION AND SENSORY PROCESSING DISORDER

Sensory Integration is the process your central nervous system goes through when it takes information in from your body’s 8 senses, processes that information, and then responds accordingly. When one’s central nervous system has difficulty processing any of this sensory information, the body’s responses are atypical and can be observed in motor, language, or behavioral skill difficulties. Occupational therapists diagnose these atypicalities as Sensory Processing Disorder or SPD.

When we talk about Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD), occupational therapists diagnose 3 subtypes of SPD: Sensory Modulation Disorder, Sensory-Based Motor Disorder, and Sensory Discrimination Disorder. It is likely that people with sensory processing dysfunction demonstrate a combination of symptoms from the subtypes, however, the symptoms we are focusing on in this article fall under one particular subtype: Sensory Modulation Disorder: Sensory Over-responsivity (SMD-SOR).