Motor Skills and Autism

Proprioceptive, Interoceptive struggles are a part of autism, not an incidental feature.

I was pleased and relieved to see this on my newsfeed page today.

https://www.spectrumnews.org/opinion/motor-skills-in-autism-a-missed-opportunity/?utm_source=Spectrum%20Newsletters&utm_campaign=861d6ef162-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_202

On many of the autistic forums I attend we have constant discussions about our struggles with coordination, eye hand difficulties, constant bruises and broken bones from mis judging distances, need to touch things (the walls, you neighbor, etc etc ) to keep your balance… the pages are full of struggles with motor skills of all sorts.

You know I do not often share blogs or pages from other sources, please read and understand what we have been saying all along. Now science is recognizing our physical struggles as well as our social struggles and our communication struggles.

DSM 5 does not include proprioceptive/interoceptive/motor struggles in the criteria for diagnosing autism. Yet the doctor who gave me diagnosis 2 years ago noted that in his 40 years of practice, he had never met an autistic person who did not have struggles with perception, balance, gait or other physical/motor symptoms of proprioceptive nature. Evidently this truth has been known to some practitioners for years.

Now studies are documenting this truth.

It is not too soon to add motor/proprioceptive struggles to criteria and known struggles of autism in the next DSM.

Physical therapy and occupational therapy, therapy for balance, gait, performance, can all help with these things. If you don’t have insurance or can’t afford to work with professionals, Look for information in books, videos, on the internet and other sources.

There are multiple exercises and ideas to incorporate healthy proprioceptive activities into our lives and those of our loved ones. If one doesn’t work for you, there are dozens of alternatives.

As we age, we are more susceptible to injury and falls due to our slowed responses and our less robust physical condition. Adding exercises for proprioceptive difficulties can improve our quality of life in so many ways. It is OK to ask for help in these areas, you don’t have to do this alone!




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