What is Sensory Integration Dysfunction related to Tourette Syndrome

“Sensory integration theory proposes that sensory integration is a neurobiological process that organizes sensation from one’s own body and from the environment and makes it possible to use the body effectively within the environment.”  (1)


Children with Tourette Syndrome can demonstrate signs of Sensory Integration Dysfunction related to poor ability to adapt to one’s environment through the senses (such as touch, sight, sounds, smell, etc).  Children who struggle with  Sensory Integration Dysfunction can present in various fashions leading to difficulties with tasks such as school, sleeping, daily activities, feeding and many more.  Some common symptoms of Sensory Integration Dysfunction include (but are not limited to):

                – Hypersensitivity (over responsiveness to stimulus)

                – Hyposensitivity (under responsiveness to stimulus)

                – Mixed Responsiveness

                – Disinhibition (difficulty with impulse control, poor safety awareness)

                – Dyspraxia (difficulty with motor planning and can appear clumsy or uncoordinated)

                – Frequent meltdowns


If Sensory Integration Dysfunction is limiting or creating difficulty throughout your child’s day, it is important to learn how to manage those symptoms and ensure that success is achieved during daily activities.


For more information regarding assessment and treatment of Sensory Integration Dysfunction, please consult your pediatric Occupational Therapist or your primary Doctor/Neurologist.



1)      Smith, S., Mailloux Z. & Erwin B. Ayers Sensory Integration. Sensory Integration Global Network.  Retrieved February 25, 2014 from http://www.siglobalnetwork.org/asi.html#!ayres-sensory-integration/c1mj9

About the Author


Heather Simpson, OTR/L

Heather Simpson graduated with a B.S. in Exercise and Sport Science with a minor in Early Education from the University of Florida in 2007. Following…

Read all articles by Heather Simpson, OTR/L