Research Article  |   December 2017
Effectiveness of Cognitive and Occupation-Based Interventions for Children With Challenges in Sensory Processing and Integration: A Systematic Review
Author Affiliations
  • Beth Pfeiffer, PhD, OTR/L, BCP, FAOTA, is Associate Professor, Department of Rehabilitation Sciences, Temple University, Philadelphia, PA; bpfeiffe@temple.edu
  • Gloria Frolek Clark, PhD, OTR/L, BCP, SCSS, FAOTA, is Occupational Therapist, Private Practice, Adel, IA
  • Marian Arbesman, PhD, OTR/L, FAOTA, is Methodology Consultant, Evidence-Based Practice Project, American Occupational Therapy Association, Bethesda, MD; Adjunct Associate Professor, Department of Clinical Research and Leadership, George Washington University School of Medicine and Health Sciences, Washington, DC; and President, ArbesIdeas, Inc., Williamsville, NY
Article Information
Evidence-Based Practice / Neurologic Conditions / Rehabilitation, Participation, and Disability / Sensory Integration and Processing / Special Section: Evidence Review
Research Article   |   December 2017
Effectiveness of Cognitive and Occupation-Based Interventions for Children With Challenges in Sensory Processing and Integration: A Systematic Review
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, December 2017, Vol. 72, 7201190020p1-7201190020p9. doi:10.5014/ajot.2018.028233
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, December 2017, Vol. 72, 7201190020p1-7201190020p9. doi:10.5014/ajot.2018.028233
Abstract

This systematic review examines the evidence for the effectiveness of cognitive and occupation-based interventions to improve self-regulation in children and youth who have challenges in processing and integrating sensory information. The Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analysis guided the methodology. Five studies identified through a comprehensive database search met the inclusion criteria and were separated into categories of cognitive and occupation-based interventions. Articles that did not specifically measure sensory integration (SI) or processing challenges were omitted. Synthesis of the articles suggests that self-regulation (e.g., sensory processing, emotional regulation, executive functioning, social function) improved with cognitive and occupation-based interventions. Because the number of studies that measured sensory processing or SI challenges was limited, researchers are encouraged to include these measures in future research to understand the impact of a broader range of cognitive and occupation-based interventions.