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Every child is different and unique, and when we, as parents do not understand why are children, are acting in a certain way, it can cause us to misunderstand them. Misunderstandings can lead to your child feeling as though something is wrong with them, which is the last thing you want to make your child feel.

Many parents misunderstand what sensitivity is and, in turn, unintentionally lead their children to feel as though their sensitivity is a bad thing. In reality, more sensitive children are underappreciated. Why? Based on the research, highly sensitive children are more able to harness a very important skill: empathy.

So, does your child have a highly sensitive brain? Here are the signs.

1. They experience emotional extremes.

More sensitive children tend to experience deeper emotional extremes. This can look like them having a major reaction to something that may seem slight. In some cases, their mood may go from 0-100 before you can even understand what is happening.

2. They are easily triggered by sensory stimulation.

Does your child seem especially sensitive to lights, sounds, and other sensory stimuli? For example, if you notice your child seems especially moody during a grocery store trip or a trip somewhere where there is a lot of stimuli, then they likely are a highly sensitive child.

3. They have major meltdowns.

Oftentimes, highly sensitive children are more prone to meltdowns. They are easily overwhelmed and have big emotions. When you add sensory sensitivity in there, it’s easy to see why they melt down.

4. They are very tuned in.

Highly sensitive children tend to be very tuned into everyone else around them. You may notice that they are very observant and pick up on things you would not expect them to. Additionally, they are also likely to be overanalyzed.

5. They are rigid and inflexible.

Living as a highly sensitive child can be overwhelming. One way kids cope is by trying to regain control over the situation. Due to this, they may seem very rigid about certain things, like where people sit, the color of their plates, or the style of their hair.

6. They are very self-aware.

Some highly sensitive kids are even more self-aware than most adults. In some cases, they may even shock you with the things they say about themselves.

7. They are fearful and cautious about new experiences.

The world is especially nerve-wracking for a highly sensitive child. While from the outside looking in, you may just think they are being dramatic, in reality, they are just trying to find a sense of peace. One way of doing that is by feeling a sense of control over their environment. This can make new experiences especially nerve-wracking.

8. They are easily frustrated.

Highly sensitive children have a lower threshold for frustration. While it may take most kids quite a bit to blow up, highly sensitive kids are more easily triggered.

9. They are very sensitive to criticism.

If you find that your little one takes criticism especially hard, they are likely highly sensitive. For example, if you made a comment about your child’s hair, and they immediately pulled up, even if you were being kind, this shows they are more sensitive to criticism.

10. They have an old soul vibe.

Highly sensitive children are wise and insightful beyond their years. A lot of the time, they may say things that are even insightful to you. While we often think we are the wisdom bearers, in the case of a highly sensitive child, it could be the other way around.