Stress & Anxiety Disorders in People with Sensitisation
When these exercises are combined with psychological desensitisation strategies,
Training your brain
SENSORY SENSITIVITY, SENSORY PROCESSING AND STRESS AND ANXIETY PROBLEMS ARE CLOSELY LINKED according to recently completed qualitative research through Manchester Metropolitan University UK. Concurrent clinical practice is demonstrating that stress and anxiety can be significantly diminished by improving sensory processing in sensitive people.
Two important aspects for discussion here are sensory processing and sensory sensitivity.
The brain is continually being informed through our many senses, and has to interpret them and make meaning of them in order to respond accordingly.
The brain must:
Each individual has different levels of sensory processing efficiency. Many people are likely to have some degree of processing deficiency and they learn to compensate around these for functional ability. People with more significant sensory processing disorders can exhibit the following:
A person with sensory sensitivity can feel overwhelmed with sensory "overload" due to constant or excessive arousal by stimuli that are not being screened, dampened or inhibited.
Sensory sensitivity can be general as part of a natural character trait (a highly sensitive person), or specific as a result of trauma (physical or emotional).
Sensory sensitivity is a person's heightened arousal by general or specific stimuli due to sensitisation.
Sensitisation is reduced sensory dampening or inhibition of stimuli deemed irrelevant.
Sensory processing disorders can cause sensory mismatches where different senses are not interpreted cohesively.
Sensory mismatches and sensory "overload" (disinhibition) can lead to interpretation problems and other central symptoms such as:
Retraining Your Brain
Sensory processing help for people with stress and anxiety:
Sensory processing is developed sequentially from infancy through to adulthood.
As an infant brain receives sensory information about movement through primitive reflexes, they begin to develop their own voluntary movement. This is through a series of developmental processes including rolling, crawling, stepping, walking etc.
Concurrent brain developments occur – such as visual acuity during crawling, and language with auditory discrimination – and as the child develops the brain, body and mind functions integrate and mature.
Where we jump in:
Understanding these processes has enabled sensory processing exercises to be developed to help bring the sensitive person's brain to a level that is more capable of organising information.
This is done using a combination of neurodevelopmental motor control exercises, primitive reflex inhibition and sensory integration exercises.