Welcome to Autism Fundraising Guide. I focus on therapies, treatment, advice, trends and personal anecdotes based upon my experience as a parent of a sixteen year old with Autism Spectrum Disorder. I have seen this disorder go from relatively obscure when my child was diagnosed thirteen years ago, to a very maintream epidemic today.

Friday, July 25, 2014

Children With Autism How to Improve Sensory Integration

Autism Disorder presents a variety of challenges. One of the most complex is sensory integration for children with autism. According to The Autism Encyclopedia, sensory integration is the ability to organize sensory information. Quite a bit remains to be explored about sensory integration for children with autism but the main therapy for this problem is called Sensory Integration Therapy. Following are some suggestions to improve sensory integration in children with autism:

  1. Obtain vibrating massagers
  Many children with autism find that vibration provides them with very pleasing sensory input. Vibrating massagers are sold in many different designs and styles. Massagers can really help children with autism to calm down and relax. Children normally like the fact that they can turn a vibrating massager off and on all by themselves. It is a good idea to always have several types of these on hand to assist the child in relaxation in stressful environments, such as public places. These massagers can also be given to children as a reinforcer for behaving well.

  2. Purchase balls in different textures
  Balls of all different textures are sold in specialty catalogs. Some of these balls are squishy. Some are balls made out of string. There are even "bead balls" and fuzzy balls. There are also balls of slime and balls that turn inside out. The balls are nontoxic and very fun and squeezable. Having fun this way relaxes children and provides positive sensory input. These balls also make great reinforcers for behaving well.

  3. Explore oral motor tools and toys
  There are many oral motor devices such as "chewy tubes" for children to chew on. These offer a nontoxic surface for biting and chewing. The purpose of these devices is to provide input to the jaw, which many children find pressure- relieving. These should always be used with a professional speech and language pathologist and occupational therapist. There are also vibrators for oral motor stimulation and textured spoons.

  All of these devices are not necessary fo obtain for every child with autism. Children are all different an their likes and needs are highly variable. The above ideas however, are suggestions that could be discussed with professionals on the child's therapeutic team. Speech and language pathologists and occupational therapists are in the best position to recommend the appropriate sensory integration tools.

  These tactics may assist in sensory integration for children with autism. Being unable to process and differentiate among the sensory input coming at a child makes learning an uphill task. The above program offers the great benefit of helping a child make sense of the world.

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