In a perfect world there would be lots of things a sensory defensive child just wouldn't have to do. In the case of mine, the list would look something like this:
To "NEVER" Do List:
- Get shots
- Go to dentist or floss
- Have nails trimmed
- Get face wet
- Hear a fire drill
- Enter bathroom or other small enclosed space with smoke detectors
- Experience thunder storms
- Have a small person yell in ear
- Have bugs get anywhere near
add to the list, sleep all night with olive oil in hair!
A sensory defensive child should never ever have to deal with lice! It's just not right. Now of course no one should have to deal with lice. They are a teeny tiny big fat pain in the head... but more than any other... a child who experiences life in fight or flight mode, to whom bugs can be terrifying, who fights against getting his head and face wet regularly when bathing... this child should NOT have to be told there are tiny little bugs on his head. He should not then have to sit still while someone painstakingly pulls his hair while picking out nits and such and he really should not have to deal with seemingly never ending treatments of olive oil in his hair and multiple shampoos and rinses.
When all this came down for us recently, I simply assumed there was no information out there for how to deal with lice with your child with SPD... amazingly it turns out I was wrong in that assumption. I should have known that Lindsey Biel, OTR/L, and Nancy Peske, authors of Raising a Sensory Smart Child, would have suggestions! What would we SPD parents do without them? If you are interested, look HERE in this handy About.com article on this very subject.
I have to say this however... while I'm sure this is extremely helpful advice for parents of SPD kids who have major issues with smell, that isn't really our problem. None of these things really were helpful in our case. Every time we've done this, what helped was explaining that without the treatment, he'd have to keep dealing with the possibility of bugs on his head. It was also helpful to let him play computer games while we nit-picked and blow dried. Distraction = good! Otherwise, a towel (changed often to make sure it's dry) for his face and ears while shampooing and rinsing helps a bit. Frankly the olive oil... won't ever be good for him... at least not without more occupational therapy maybe... he cries, he protests, he struggles and ultimately we do it and he falls asleep. Once it's dry, no big deal.
Here's hoping we never, ever have to do this again... it definitely gets added to the TO "NEVER" DO list!