Commonly, a child with autism may experience sensory problems.
There is a solution that can help improve one’s sensitivity or from becoming overly stimulated through sensory toys made for autism.
According to the American Psychiatric Association, sensory toys are considered a diagnostic protocol for kids who have been diagnosed with this condition.
As a result, if you have a child dealing with autism, investing in these types of toys could be a GREAT way to keep them calm, relaxed, and focused.
Sensory toys have been designed to help stimulate your child’s five senses, including touch, taste, sight, smell, and sound.
The interactive toys often include elements such as sounds, bright contrasting colors, and various unique textures.
Let’s explore the best sensory toys for autism and how these toys can help your child.
Why Use Sensory Toys for Autism?
There is no doubt that the use of sensory toys among autistic children is growing in popularity.
You may have already come across different types of toys that are available in the market that are ideal for improving one or two senses in your child.
If not, you are at the perfect spot because this post will expose you to several of the top toys for autism which work by excitingly engaging your child or by doing the exact opposite, to provide a soothing and calming experience.
As we previously touched on, a sensory toy geared towards this condition can benefit your little one to explore their senses in a fun and interactive way.
While playing, children will begin to grasp their senses way better and manage them with ease.
There are numerous benefits you need to know about when it comes to sensory toys so let’s explore that topic next.
Sensory Toy Benefits
Sensory toys are made to stimulate the brain to improve sensory processing systems which can benefit your child in several ways:
- Support communication skills
- Improve social skills
- Encourage problem solving skills
- Increase motor skills
- Help build nerve connections in the brain to improve sensory processing
When “sensory processing” occurs the nervous system is receiving messages from the senses and turning them into responses.
An engaging sensory toy or activity can help a child process the sensory information that goes into their brain and how to appropriately respond to that experience.
It is important to know that each child’s condition is unique which is why choosing a toy that will be best for your kiddo can be a bit challenging.
As a result, numerous toy reviews, ratings, and brands have been heavily researched to compile a list of some of the best sensory toys for autism available in the market.
The Best Sensory Toys for Autism
Chew toys such as the “Chew Superpack” are designed from non-toxic silicone compounds and handheld objects or feature jewelry designs that can be worn on the neck or wrist.
Most parents often use chewing toys for their infants, especially during the teething stage.
These chew toys for autism come in different textures, rigidity, and patterns.
They are highly essential when it comes to improving your child’s chewing skills and also provide him or her with sensory stimulation.
These relatively small sensory mats tend to utilize various unique textures to gently enhance sensory input and tactile exploration.
Your child can either use his or her feet or hand to feel as well as play with these unique textures which include:
A fun activity you can do when using these sensory mats is to have your child close their eyes and start to describe and touch the various mats and ask them what they feel.
You can hang the mats on the wall or put them on the floor.
Pin art boards are considered to be highly essential among kids with autism since they feature a steel pin that allows your child to make as well as look at imprints within the pins.
You might consider using your hands in creating imprints and other objects.
The pins feature great texture when touched, making it ideal for improving the sense of touch among kids dealing with autism.
It’s also an excellent tactile activity to stimulate the imagination.
Body sox is an interactive toy that works by letting your child put on a colorful, breathable, and see-through lycra sock.
The pressure produced by this sock helps relieve anxiety and initiates relaxation among kids with autism.
It’s very lightweight and easy to take with you on the go.
It also helps a child develop spatial and body awareness, muscle strength, and motor planning skills.
Fidget spinners are highly essential when it comes to helping a child improve focus by having their hand occupied.
Furthermore, fidget spinners are considered not only ideal for a kid with autism but also for those with attention-deficit hyperactive disorder (ADHD) and attention deficit disorder (ADD).
As the spinner rotates fast with a smooth rotation, children tend to find it entertaining.
The spinner can help release stress and excess energy while strengthening visual tracking, fine motor skills, and eye-hand coordination.
With different designs available in today’s market, you can always find one that will best suit your child’s needs.
Using sensory toys to help a child with autism can allow them to explore their senses in a fun and interactive way.
The toy is an investment in the sensory benefits a child experiences to encourage their skills to communicate, move, interact with others, and mentally process their senses.
It is important to keep in mind that these toys do not replace formal and evidence-based treatment.
This means that the sensory toys are designed to help your child learn more about their senses while decreasing their fear and discomfort. It will allow them to play in a more natural way.
Hopefully, the playful activities recommended in this post have inspired your research efforts in finding the perfect sensory toy for your kiddo.
If there are additional sensory toys or activities you would recommend, questions you may have, or anything you’d like to add that I did not cover in this post, please feel free to comment below.
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