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Good Samaritan Hospital helps children with sensory processing disorder

When she got very excited, 9-year-old Kristen Murdock used to flap her arms up and down. But since undergoing several months of outpatient occupational therapy at the Good Samaritan Health and Wellness Center, she’s been flapping a lot less – a behavior change that her mother attributes to the coping mechanisms she’s learned during therapy.

Kristen, of Darien, is diagnosed with sensory processing disorder, a neurological disorder that occurs when people have difficulty organizing the information relayed by any or all of their five senses. It is most commonly diagnosed in children.

Formerly known as sensory integration dysfunction, the disorder affects at least 1 in 20 children’s daily lives, according to one study cited by the Sensory Processing Disorder Foundation, an advocacy group. Symptoms occur within a broad spectrum of severity and while most people have occasional difficulties processing sensory information, for children and adults with SPD, these difficulties are chronic and disrupt everyday life.

“What I really have been so impressed with … with the pediatric occupation therapy area here at Good Samaritan, there is just a passionate interest in what the issues are for each individual child,” said Kristen’s mom, Sandra Murdock, “and the idea of helping my daughter develop strategies that work for her.”

Learn more about Kristen’s journey and the treatments available for sensory processing disorder by watching this video:

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