Interoception is the sensory system that provides information about how the body feels on the inside. This information enables us to identify hunger, satiation, pain, nausea, arousal and exertion, in addition to offering greater insight into emotional states. For example, noticing a belly growl prompts the realization of hunger which leads to seeking food for satiation. Interoception helps us understand how we feel (interoceptive awareness)
Interoceptive awareness is crucial for effective self-regulation. It is a foundational skill required for successful engagement in various activities of daily living, like toilet training, sleep hygiene, mealtime, dressing, motor games and play, social participation and academic success.
Using Kelly Mahler’s Interoception curriculum, our clinicians help the child notice and label internal body signals, connect these cues to emotions, and use this knowledge to apply strategies to promote regulation, including body state regulation and emotional regulation. It is based on mindfulness principles which use movement, heavy work and alerting activities, sensory play, and communication prompts. The strategies are developmentally appropriate, can be easily modified to meet individual needs, and can be paired with other regulating strategies like The Zones of Regulation program.
- Self-Awareness and Regulation
- Problem Solving
- Attachment and attunement
- Social Intuition
- Perspective taking
- Flexible thinking
- Motor imitation