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Sensory Supports for Overstimulated Kids

We've all been there...watching our kids on the verge of a meltdown and knowing these big emotions have been triggered by an overstimulating environment. But as parents and carers what can we do in these situations to help our children process their environment and cope with their feelings?

At Inspire Ability we encourage our clients to practise mindful body awareness, enabling them to recognise when they are becoming angry or upset and manage these emotions proactively. When we practise calming strategies with our clients, we think about activities and resources that provide rhythmic, repetitious, steady, and predictable support. By practising this skill, children become more adept at recognising when they are hungry, thirsty, tired etc, all of which are necessary precursors to positive development and self-regulation.

To make your life easy, we've compiled a list of strategies and tools you can use to help your child practise mindful body awareness in the classroom, the home and while out in the community. 

Deep Breathing or meditation 

Check out this great belly breathing activity by The Mindfulness Teacher on YouTube

Wearing compression clothing or a sensory bodysuit

CalmCare's sensory compression singlets are designed to provide sensory input to kids with additional needs. The reassuring, gentle pressure provides proprioceptive feedback (information received from muscles and tendons, concerning body movement and position) to help kids listen, focus and learn while staying calm, and becoming more self-aware.

 

 

Listening to quiet, slow music like this playlist by KIDZEN

Slow rocking or swinging 

You can do this using a sensory swing, rocking chair, wobble cushion, balance ball or stool to provide sensory output, and encourage mobility

 

 

Squeezing or fidgeting with and object 

Fidgets and stress balls are great for young children who experience nervousness, anxiety or just have fidgety fingers. These products can help over-stimulated children focus on their breathing and find grounding through touch. They can be used at any time during the day, at home or in the classroom, whenever your child needs help to overcome sensory challenges due to Autism Spectrum Disorder or Sensory Processing Disorder. 

 

Stretching or doing yoga

We LOVE the Cosmic Kids Yoga Channel on YouTube

Using oral stimulation through a chewy object or food

Our range of silicone chewable toys offer a non-toxic alternative to chewing on pencils, clothing and skin, making them perfect for children with sensory processing difficulties. 

Holding something heavy 

Our weighted cushions can be especially helpful for kids who find themselves uncomfortable, fidgety, and struggle to concentrate. The weighted pressure acts as a type of deep touch pressure therapy that stimulates the proprioceptive sense to help the nervous system relax. 


 

Focusing on grounding through touch and sensory play

 

We hope these strategies and resources give you insight into how to help the kids in your life regulate their emotions and overcome overstimulation in their day. 

- The Inspire Team

 

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