Presentation Title

Adults with Sensory Defensiveness and Their Use of Coping Strategies

Location

Online - Session 5D

Start Date

4-21-2021 3:50 PM

Major Field of Study

Occupational Therapy

Student Type

Graduate

Faculty Mentor(s)

Julia Wilbarger, Phd

Presentation Format

Oral Presentation

Abstract/Description

Keywords: Sensory Processing, Sensory Defensiveness, Coping Mechanisms, Coping Strategies, Occupational Therapy, Adults

Understanding sensory defensiveness in adults and how they use coping strategies can better inform occupational therapists (OTs) how to address this issue with their clients to help them attain a better quality of life. Sensory defensiveness is an over-reaction to non-noxious sensory stimuli occurring in any or all of the sensory systems (Pfeiffer & Kinnealey, 2003). Individuals with sensory defensiveness are uncomfortable with certain sensations that would not cause discomfort to others. The topic is not well researched beyond childhood and a limited number of studies with small sample sizes address sensory defensiveness in adults Many adults who have sensory defensiveness develop coping strategies in order to continue participating in everyday occupations, but there has only been one study with a small sample size that addresses this (Kinnealey et al., 1995).

This study was an exploratory, mixed method design of descriptive and qualitative data, gathered through a questionnaire asking about sensory processing and coping strategies. By utilizing a mixed methods study, data was collected for identifying additional coping strategies not found in previous research. Participants aged 18-65 were recruited through snowball sampling; there are currently 77 responses, with 2 more weeks of data collection. The full data has yet to be collected; though our hypothesis is that coping strategy categories will remain consistent throughout sensations/ inter-item correlation, and that a higher sensory score will relate to more coping strategies employed. The field of occupational therapy will benefit from this study by understanding the relationship between the severity of sensory defensiveness and coping strategies used by the typical adult population so that OTs can be better equipped to provide tailored interventions.

References

Kinnealey, M., Oliver, B., Wilbarger, P. (1995). A phenomenological study of sensory defensiveness in adults. American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 49(5), 444–451.

Pfeiffer, B., & Kinnealey, M. (2003). Treatment of sensory defensiveness in adults. Occupational Therapy International, 10(3), 175–184. https://doi.org/10.1002/oti.184

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Apr 21st, 3:50 PM

Adults with Sensory Defensiveness and Their Use of Coping Strategies

Online - Session 5D

Keywords: Sensory Processing, Sensory Defensiveness, Coping Mechanisms, Coping Strategies, Occupational Therapy, Adults

Understanding sensory defensiveness in adults and how they use coping strategies can better inform occupational therapists (OTs) how to address this issue with their clients to help them attain a better quality of life. Sensory defensiveness is an over-reaction to non-noxious sensory stimuli occurring in any or all of the sensory systems (Pfeiffer & Kinnealey, 2003). Individuals with sensory defensiveness are uncomfortable with certain sensations that would not cause discomfort to others. The topic is not well researched beyond childhood and a limited number of studies with small sample sizes address sensory defensiveness in adults Many adults who have sensory defensiveness develop coping strategies in order to continue participating in everyday occupations, but there has only been one study with a small sample size that addresses this (Kinnealey et al., 1995).

This study was an exploratory, mixed method design of descriptive and qualitative data, gathered through a questionnaire asking about sensory processing and coping strategies. By utilizing a mixed methods study, data was collected for identifying additional coping strategies not found in previous research. Participants aged 18-65 were recruited through snowball sampling; there are currently 77 responses, with 2 more weeks of data collection. The full data has yet to be collected; though our hypothesis is that coping strategy categories will remain consistent throughout sensations/ inter-item correlation, and that a higher sensory score will relate to more coping strategies employed. The field of occupational therapy will benefit from this study by understanding the relationship between the severity of sensory defensiveness and coping strategies used by the typical adult population so that OTs can be better equipped to provide tailored interventions.

References

Kinnealey, M., Oliver, B., Wilbarger, P. (1995). A phenomenological study of sensory defensiveness in adults. American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 49(5), 444–451.

Pfeiffer, B., & Kinnealey, M. (2003). Treatment of sensory defensiveness in adults. Occupational Therapy International, 10(3), 175–184. https://doi.org/10.1002/oti.184