Occupational Therapy -> Sensory -> Tactile


Tactile processing is the way in which we take in and interpret what we touch and physically feel. Examples of tactile processing challenges include the following examples: inability to notice extremely hot or extremely cold temperatures, difficulty tolerating the feel of pants or long shirts in the winter, becoming dysregulated when hands or face are messy during mealtime, and limited tolerance of various food textures impacting participation in meals.

Reference links

  • Interventions Supporting Mental Health and Positive Behavior In Children Ages Birth–5 Yr: A Systematic Review 2
    Author: Kingsley, Sagester, and Weaver - The evidence indicates that touch-based interventions can improve infant self-regulation (strong), social behavior, and attachment (moderate) and reduce maternal stress, anxiety, and depression (low). Moderate-strength evidence supports PCIT to improve child behavior. The evidence indicates that parent training can improve parent behavior, maternal–infant attachment (strong), and parent mental health (moderate). Teacher training can improve mental health and behavior (moderate). • Practitioners should coach caregivers to use massage to increase infant self-regulation, reduce parental stress, and improve child social behavior. • KC or skin-to-skin contact should be used to address maternal stress, anxiety, and attachment. • PCIT should be considered only to address child behavior. • Practitioners should implement individualized parent or teacher training to promote child mental health and positive behavior. • Occupational therapy educational programs should train practitioners to incorporate parent-mediated intervention to promote infants’ and young children’s positive mental health. Citation: Karrie Kingsley, Grace Sagester, Lindy L. Weaver; Interventions Supporting Mental Health and Positive Behavior in Children Ages Birth–5 Yr: A Systematic Review. Am J Occup Ther March/April 2020, Vol. 74(2), 7402180050p1–7402180050p29. doi: https://doi.org/10.5014/ajot.2020.039768
  • Occupational Therapy Interventions For Children and Youth With Challenges In Sensory Integration and Sensory Processing: A School-Based Practice Case Example 0
    Author: Gloria Frolek Clark; Renee Watling; L. Diane Parham; Roseann Schaaf - This case demonstrates the use of evidence-based strategies in school-based occupational therapy for a student with ASD and sensory processing difficulties whose occupational therapy evaluation identified specific challenges in the school routine that affected his occupational performance and participation. This case emphasizes the need to implement the following evidence-based evaluation and intervention procedures: - Conduct a comprehensive evaluation that includes screening all areas of occupation, record review, interviews, observations during natural routines, and assessment tool use (when applicable). - Use evaluation findings to hypothesize why participation challenges occur. - Work with the team to identify the student’s needs and create collaborative student IEP goals to address these needs (not therapy-specific goals). - Provide occupational therapy services that reflect the distinct value of occupational therapy in school settings. - Gather frequent quantitative data to determine the effectiveness of the intervention.

Activity List(s)

Visual Schedule Cards

Related Disorder(s)

  • Sensory processing disorders - Sensory processing disorder is a condition in which the brain has trouble receiving and responding to information that comes in through the senses.

Goal Bank

  • With provided sensory support, strategies, and multimodal communication opportunities Peter will self-advocate for sensory accommodation while engaged in meaningful activity involving touching different materials to alleviate sensory avoidant behaviors on 4 /5 textures in 2 months. 1
  • Penny will tolerate wearing elastic tight denim jeans for 3 hours by May 5 ,2023 . 0
  • Jane will pick up small objects using an inferior pincer grasp and successfully place them into a container with their thumb and fingers using her right-hand 3 times in 4 /5 treatment sessions with setup assist and 30% verbal cues for increased grasp and release accuracy. 0
  • Sarah will cut across a piece of paper in 4/5 trials in 4 /5 sessions, with minimal assistance and 25% verbal cues to promote separation of sides of hands and eye-hand coordination for optimal participation in a school setting. 0
  • Peter will remain seated during circle time at school with the usage of a wobble cushion for 5 minutes 4 /5 days a week by the end of the 9 weeks to enhance their role as a student and their attention in academic learning. 0
  • Hannah will cut simple shapes within a 1/4 ” of the line in 4/5 trials with minimal assist and 25% verbal cues to promote separation of sides of hands and eye-hand coordination for optimal participation in a school setting. 0
  • Given sensory strategies, Migdalia will tolerate holding a pencil to complete classroom written tasks 80% of the time as measured by observation and data collection to improve tactile skills over 5 consecutive therapy sessions. 2


  • Home Exercise Program Hand Strengthening preview

    Home Exercise Program Hand Strengthening

    Krystan Inman

    Hand strength is important to develop fine motor skills needed for daily tasks such as pencil grasp and handwriting, scissors skills and self-care such as dressing, eating, and brushing teeth.


  • Homemade Sugar Scrub preview

    Homemade Sugar Scrub

    Kimberly Luster, COTA

    Sensory Integration Resource. Recipe Resource. Occupational Therapy Resource. Physical Therapy Resource. Homemade sugar scrub can be made to use in the home, in the clinic, and during teletherapy w...


  • Scavenger Hunt preview

    Scavenger Hunt

    Krystan Inman

    A scavenger hunt is fun and can be rewarding. It can boost in self-confidence and offer a sense of accomplishment our children often need. It can build self-esteem and encourage children to mingle ...


  • Handwriting With Joke Concepts preview

    Handwriting With Joke Concepts

    Virginia Ingram, CCC-SLP

    April Fools Day. Use these handwriting worksheets to practice letter formation. This will also help test expressive and receptive language skills as each of the terms are synonyms for jokes or joking.

    Includes activity list


  • S is For Shaving Cream - A Sensory Activity preview

    S is For Shaving Cream - A Sensory Activity

    Bethany Ayer

    Sensory Integration Resource. Occupational Therapy Resource. This is meant to be a sensory activity which can assist with reducing tactile sensitivity, encourage pre handwriting skills (by drawing ...


  • Pencil Control Exercises- Vertical Lines preview

    Pencil Control Exercises- Vertical Lines

    Glenna Nave

    Writing Resource. Pre-writing Worksheet. Fine Motor Resource. Occupational Therapy Resource. OT. Pencil Control. Directions: connect the dots while keeping marks inside the pathway.