Just sat eating a piece of paper…..as you do!
My girl is always eating, and not always food!
She seems to crave food, crave that feeling of a mouth full.
She has always been a oral sensory seeker.
She has always needed the sensation that chewing provides.
Like many on the Autism Specrum, she has Sensory Processing Disorder.
Chewing is a common behaviour in Autism.
Many children chew on their clothes, paper, cardboard…..anything they can get their hands on.
Many parents try and alleviate the destruction of clothing etc by providing chewy tubes or other chewy toys.
My girl has problems with constant jaw dislocations, and although she craves the need to chew, she cannot use the chewy items.
She bites. Alot.
Gaining that sensory input in a way she knows won’t provoke pain.
The proprioceptive system, how we know where we are in space, and the ability to safely manoeuvre around the environment, is closely connected to the jaw.
We receive proprioceptive input from our jaws.
My girls loose jaw, coupled with the need to chew, means she does not receive the input from the pressure we get from chewing.
She is not receiving the input through the muscles and joints in her mouth.
Her brain is telling her to find that input so she finds it anyway she can.