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Forum: Children with Developmental Delays and Disorders


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February 18th, 2008, 10:18 AM
EricsMom's Avatar SuperMommy!
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Western Canada
Posts: 585
Hi, everyone.

I really didn't know which Board to post this on. I'm just looking for some feedback regarding my son's behavior.

Here's a brief rundown:
- turned 3 in Sept
- DS was born 6 weeks early
- had an abnormal MRI and CT at birth (Dr's were unsure what that meant but said he'd be monitored for his development)
- had a "nervous disorder" when born that caused him to twitch or spasm almost like a mini seizure but it would calm when you held him. Seemed to be related to over stimulation (noise, excitement, over tired, temperature). As he grew it became less noticeble and is now more like a "jitter" so to speak - it's hard to describe
- he's met all developmental milestones except speech - he's receiving speech therapy once a week and is making great progress. The words are now coming and we're working on pronounciation
- The nervous twitch is something that has never really been investigated and last summer it manifested into DS "pacing" on occasion and flapping his hands (a typical autism sign). When discussed with Ped. he ruled out autism as the typical signs weren't there - DS is very social, makes great eye contact, interacts with other children well, tends to have a short attention span, smiles, makes various facial expressions, etc.
- Passed the Gieselle Assessment at an age appropriate level in everything except speech in Sept.
- DS had an EEG at 18 months (for something unrelated) that came back "perfectly normal"
- DS is now 3-1/2 years old and over the last 2 months the pacing and hand flapping are now a daily occurance. If you tell him to clap his hand or put his hands on his head he will right away and you can make a game out of it but he will go right back to the behaviour when your done. He can pace for as long as 15 or 20 min. if you let him. This past week on 6 occasions that I've seen he's let out a loud screech for no apparent reason and he seems to be zoning out at times - especially in the car. I'll talk to him and sometimes have to get mad before he'll answer me. I never know if it's him just being a 3 year old with selective hearing or if there's something wrong. Up til now I've not been worried but now I'm getting worried. His next scheduled Ped. appt. is march 31 and I've called to see if we can get in earlier.

I just wanted to see if anyone else had any input here or a similar situation.

Thanks for taking the time to read this.
~~~ Candie ~~~

Actively TTCMA #2 Again (10 yrs total TTC'ing #2 in various stages of MA and NTNP)

Me (40) Annovulatory, PCOS, IR and Type 2 Diabetes, DH (47), DS (11)

"Learning to have faith, think positively, believe in myself and trust in God."
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March 27th, 2008, 07:36 AM
Delekatala's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Rhode Island
Posts: 3,628
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Well I pmed this but wanted to put it here for anyone elses interest.

I read your post on the developmental delay board about pacing and hand flapping. Now it is hard to say really because I am not a professional. but it sounds just like the crashing behaviors my son exhibits. He is treated by an occupational therapist for sensory concerns. Have you ever heard of sensory integration disorder? It is a fairly new thing and a lot of professionals don't even consider it a real disorder. However the therapies for it work so well for these kids. without other signs of autism (which we ruled out as well) I would bet that is what it is. I suggest you look up some good websites on sensory integration disorder. And also I bought a book called the out of sync child which was awesome. And see if it fits your child

Basically these kids can't handle all the sensory input they get, or it may be better said they don't handle sensory input correctly. They each have thier own different things that put them over the edge, and also sensory input they crave. Like my son can't handle certain touches and certain types fo fabrics. and certain kinds of noise just puts him over the edge. And crashing is caused by them seeking out the type of sensory input they do like. I bet pacing and flapping comforts him when things get to be to much.

Spacing out in the car is a big sign to me, My Alex used to need a blanket to put over his head in the car, LOL. He also did very well with a small tent in his room so he could hide when he was getting to much in. We avoid big crowds for him, he will get ovewhelmed and meltdown. Also he does better in dim light. Over time you just pick up little things and even things you probably already have in place that you just kind of understand is annoying to them.

A lot of them like heavy touching. Sleep with heavy heavy blankets, sometimes alex will even burrow under pillows. And a lot of times over time it improves with some desensetizing. But gentle desensetizing not the type of macho man throw em in the water and see of they sink kind, LOL. For his touch sensory we did brushing with him, it is a soft plastic brush we brushed over his skin several times a day for a while, and now he doesn't have nearly the hard time he used to. For a long time we couldnt get him to wear clothes. but now he keeps them on when we aren't home. though he still removes his shoes in restaurants.

Keep in mind that my son also has other issues that exacerbates it. Because of his transitioning problems and his limited mentality he reaches his limit very quickly. SO he manifests with metldowns very fast and used to have bad crashing behaviors we had to get him out of, biting himself banging his head.

But pacing and arm flapping doesn't sound dangerous, so if it is sensory related I would just let him do it until you find other way to teach him to comfort himself and deal with the input. In the car a walkman with music he likes and noise blocking headphones probably will help greatly. Of course alternate methods of comfort are important because he can't very well get up and pace and flap during school or work, you know.

Though if during school things get to much my stepdaughter was allowed to wear earplugs during tests for similar reasons. She was a micropremi and they have sensory issues a lot. She couldnt even handle the noise of a toilet flushing, she has almost completely outgrown it though.

Anyhow I am rambling on and on, basically I just wanted to suggest you look into sensory integration issues. Perhaps i will also copy and paste this into your psot on the board for other people to read. I think i will.
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April 4th, 2008, 07:08 PM
Super Mommy
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 665
I don't know much about autistic spectrum disorders and developmental delays but the hand flapping and the pacing are the most concerning behaviors that I read. I know hand/arm flapping is characteristic of excited behavior in the autistic spectrum and the pacing could be a number of things... anxiety/nervous disorders. Because of everything else you said I wouldn't lose sleep over it as your child is over 3 and autism is usually diagnosed by 3 BUT I would make sure the PED doesn't just pass it off as it is a concern of yours and really should be looked into further.

Thank you *Sharon* for my beautiful Siggy!!

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April 13th, 2008, 09:15 PM
Little Mrs Sunshine
Posts: n/a
i would be concerned also. here we have early intervention before the age of 3. after 3 you have to go through the school board. if I were you I would look into services.
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