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Sensory Integration

The Physical and Medical Needs Advisory Service have been working with the Royal Cornwall Hospitals NHS Trust Occupational Therapy team to look at ways to support pupils in school with sensory integration difficulties.

What is meant by Sensory Integration?

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We are all aware that there are many different terms used to describe a person’s sensory needs. In Cornwall we have agreed the following description.

Sensory integration is about how our brain receives and processes sensory information. This lets us do the things we need to do in our everyday life. The term sensory processing is sometimes used interchangeably with the term sensory integration.

We may hear a person’s sensory needs described in different ways. For example as:

  • sensory differences
  • sensory seeking
  • sensory overload
  • sensory over-responsiveness

Often when these terms are used we are talking about sensory modulation. Problems with sensory modulation occur when our brain either over responds or under responds to sensory information. For some people the degree to which their brain under or over responds impacts on their ability to do the things they need to do in everyday life.


Sensory training is offered through the Children’s Community Therapy Service. Details of training available and booking forms can be found at (Use the course code “PMNAS” to assist with your search).

Further information

For further information download our Sensory Integration Definition document. This includes information about Ayres' Sensory Integration intervention (ASI).

This document has been written jointly by:

  • Royal Cornwall Hospitals NHS Trust Occupational Therapists
  • Cornwall Council SEN Support Services