Sensory Types

One thing most people are taught are the 5 senses (touch, taste, smell, hear, and see) however, when our son was diagnosed with Sensory Processing Disorder or Sensory Integration Dysfunction we learned that there were 7 senses we use not 5.
The not often mentioned 2 senses are balance/movement and body position. Balance and movement has to do with your muscles and joints where body position has to do with where your body is in space.
Each of our senses has a medical or scientific name and sometimes when looking up things specific to your child those wonderful names which are hard to pronounce will help so I will list both.
  • touch - tactile
  • see - visual
  • hear - auditory
  • smell - olfactory
  • taste - gustatory
  • balance/movement - vestibular
  • body position - proprioceptive
Usually an individual can regulate their senses to some degree but it can be very difficult for a person to explain that they need a lot of physical pressure to calm down if they have an issue with their proprioceptive sense. It can be difficult for a person at a guests house to say they can't eat the meal because it has too much or too little texture without sounding like a picky eater because of an oral sensory issue. These are some real issues for people and trying to explain these in our society isn't easy. You don't have to have all 7 senses be under or over active before you begin to have issues.