Sensory Behaviors {Response Blocking}

Some sensory behaviors can be extremely dangerous. Anything that involves the head can cause serious brain damage and needs to be addressed immediately. These behaviors are of highest priority. If your student or child is seeing a psychiatrist for medication, ask the parents for consent to communicate with the doctor so you can share the data you take regarding the behaviors at school. With these types of behaviors, medication might be something to  consider. You can also block or prevent the full engagement of the response for dangerous sensory behaviors.

For severe self injury, you can utilize helmets, padding, equipment, etc. This can weaken the self-stimulation and may diminish the behavior in addition to maintaining safety. Screen Shot 2014-06-29 at 1.52.30 PM


You can also physically block the response from occurring. Move the child’s hand away, block the bite, block the head from hitting into the table. Be careful and stay safe. Make sure you know your school’s safety and restraint policies. Even if you are not certified in crisis prevention, most schools have a policy for what to do when there is a significant risk of someone getting injured. When these situations occur, you may be able to legally and ethically interact to prevent serious injury.



This post is part of Summer Series: Reducing Problem Behavior. Click here to see more in this series!

The Autism Helper - Summer Series



  1. Thank you for sharing! I have had some issues with a student of mine banging his head on the floor. We believe it’s out of frustration but I can’t be sure. He is a non-verbal student who does not use his dynavox for communication.

  2. Self-injury is so hard to watching – especially issues related to the head! Very scary! I always recommend also talking to parent & sharing info about school behaviors with child’s doctor!


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