Interventions for Sensory Over-Responsivity in Individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder: A Narrative Review

Huan Ling Yuan, Cynthia Y.Y. Lai, Mabel N.K. Wong, Tak Chun Kwong, Yat Sze Choy, Steve W.Y. Mung, Chetwyn C.H. Chan

Research output: Journal article publicationReview articleAcademic researchpeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


Individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) often exhibit sensory over-responsivity (SOR), which is characterized by an overwhelmingly negative reaction to or avoidance of sensory stimulation. Despite the detrimental effects of SOR on people’s personal and social lives, the knowledge of and interventions for the issue remain limited. This paper collates and reviews studies on SOR and information on the potential for effective interventions for people with ASD. This review reveals evidence that SOR has a close relationship with anxiety, depression, insomnia, and family life impairment and an underlying mechanism related to SOR. Four interventions and their theoretical bases in sensory-motor processing are discussed in this paper, namely, physical activity (PA), sensory integration therapy (SIT), mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT), and cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT). These interventions focus on establishing coping strategies for regulating the emotional response to sensory information, and they have been found to be effective and to have the potential to help children with ASD reduce their SOR behaviors. This paper provides guidance for selecting appropriate interventions and for further investigation of more effective interventions in the future.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1584
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2022


  • ASD
  • interventions
  • sensory-motor processing
  • SOR
  • underlying mechanism

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health


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