Interventions for Feeding Disorders in Autistic Children: Behavioral Therapy vs. Sensory Integration
Sensory Integration Therapy (SIT) is a common method of treatment for feeding disorders in children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD). However, it has received less recognition than behavioral therapies because it is more difficult to quantify the effects of SIT in an experimental setting. Through a review of current literature this thesis project explores the effectiveness of SIT in conjunction with behavioral interventions for the treatment of feeding disorders in pediatric ASD populations. This review evaluated ten studies that used SIT, behavioral therapy, or a combination of interventions to treat disordered feeding. The results suggest that SIT yielded positive results. However, it is difficult to gauge the effectiveness of these methods outside small population sizes due to the highly individualized feeding therapy plans that each client requires. Despite limited findings on the effectiveness of these methods, a survey of clinicians showed that most professionals use SIT to treat feeding disorders.