If you’ve been following along our social media, you’ll know we’ve spent a little time this month talking about tactile perception as well as fine motor skills. We’ve talked about how they work simultaneously with our brains to comprehend what we are touching, feeling and the impact it has on our fine motor skills.
Tactile perception is also referred to as touch perception
So, what exactly is tactile perception we hear you ask?
It’s the perception that’s made through our touch receptors (mostly in the hands and face) that is known as tactile perception. This involves our sense of touch by where our brain sorts and understands information that comes from our skin (our touch). It’s our ability to perceive, through our brains, anything we touch throughout our day to day.
Our face and hands are well-supplied with lots of nerves and offer considerable feedback on our environment to the brain. Our nerves can send a variety of signals about sensation in the environment to help the brain orient the body and interpret its surroundings.
Our bodies are such well-tuned machines that most of the time we don’t even know we’re doing anything as our autopilot kicks in and everything happens automatically.
We use tactile perception in everything we do
Tactile perception is understanding the difference between texture, weight, temperature, size, and shape. Tactile perception is also extremely important in safety. Specialised nerve endings known as nociceptors are sensitized to pain specifically and provide warnings about the experience of pain. These signals can fast track to allow the body to move to avoid a threat like a fire or sharp object. This also includes how we respond through our sensors to hard and soft objects, hot and cold along with when things are light and heavy.
5 home activities to increase tactile perception
- Blindfolded games! This is a great one. For example, building a Lego tower with a blindfold, encouraging your child to stack the Lego on top of one another until they cannot go any higher.
- Making playdough. A super fun way to get your child’s hands dirty and manipulate the playdough into different shapes.
- Making chia seed slime and hiding items that need to be found. We’ve found a great recipe for you
- Functional tasks such as baking cookies and rolling the dough into balls.
- Treasure hunt games. Put several familiar household objects in a cloth bag, and ask your child to feel one and tell you what it is without looking, then you can take out the object and see if they were right.
For a little more help with your child’s tactile perception, or more ideas for you to try at home, we’d love you to contact us for an appointment or assessment.
Also, have a look around our website while you’re here at OTFC. There are plenty of different blogs for you to read and lots of tips and tricks for you to do at home with your child.
We’re now based across three locations Adelaide CBD, Mile End and Parkside.
OTFC Group – We’re Influencing Lives. Creating Possibilities. Making a Difference
OTFC is a South Australian clinic-based service that is centrally located and services children and adolescents from birth through to 21 years of age both locally and nationally. Dedicated to providing a client focused approach where children and families feel validated in their concerns, supported in difficult times, encouraged to be proactive and inspired to facilitate change.