What is sensory equipment?
Sensory equipment helps with the treatment and management of a range of sensory disorders. Multi-sensory equipment can aid the development of essential skills and interaction in a safe and controlled environment for any user. Sensory equipment can be used on its own, or as part of a sensory room, depending on the user and the intended purpose of the sensory equipment.
How do sensory toys help autism?
Using sensory equipment for autism management is a great way to both stimulate and calm users. Many people with autism are sensory seekers, which means they benefit and enjoy working on a specific sensory input. For example, the use of sensory lights can have an amazing effect on those who are autistic as it stimulates the user visually, whilst soothing and relaxing them.
Recommended sensory equipment:
Fibre optics are the perfect tool for helping to calm a user. Whilst still being tactile, they provide a more creative and fun way for children, in particular, to ease their anxieties. When used in a sensory tent or within a sensory dark room, fibre optics are enhanced and able to be used as a safe way to explore stimulation. Autistic users find this product particularly beneficial, enjoying the interactive element of being able to move and touch the lights.
Sensory hydrotherapy pools
Using water in treatment is a great way to help users manage symptoms of their conditions; hydrotherapy involves gentle exercise in water to help stimulate both the body and mind. Not only can a user develop physical skills, but sensory pools can also help with the development of colour and shape recognition, cause and effect, social interaction and many more skills. To find out more about the benefits of sensory hydrotherapy pools, please read our previous article.
Users with a range of sensory disorders benefit greatly from bubble tubes, as they are both highly engaging and calming, allowing the development of visual, communication and touch skills. The tube has air blown in, to make the movement in the bubbles, this also causes a faint vibration which helps to calm and encourages touch. To find out all about the sensory benefits of bubble tubes, please see our post specifically on the topic.
Soft play equipment is the perfect sensory solution for helping to test and explore a user’s physical abilities. This type of sensory equipment includes ball pits and many other fun and interactive products, all ideal for allowing physical and interactive skills to be developed in a safe way.
Wireless interactive technology, such as Experia’s IRiS solutions, gives control and independence back to a user. This technology allows any piece of sensory room equipment to be controlled by various forms of switches, any form can be chosen depending on the user and the desired outcome. Allow users to explore the idea of controlling what happens next, or you can tailor learning programmes entirely to a user by setting up designed sequences of interaction, the experience is completely personal either way.
Interactive floors produce an interactive and sensory experience like no other product. Even the smallest of movements can trigger interaction all in an environment you choose, based on the varying floor projection. As users are a part of this immersive environment, their cause and effect skills can be developed in a format that is comfortable for them. We have a post dedicated to exploring the benefits of sensory interactive floors, check it out to find out more information on this amazing piece of multi-sensory equipment.
It may not be the most obvious place to feature a piece of sensory equipment, however, sensory ceilings are beneficial for a wide range of users. Often used whilst lying in bed or on soft furnishings, sensory ceilings are useful when it comes to emulating relaxation and triggering sleep. There is a wide range of different projections that can be used in order to tailor the experience to the user. In addition pairing, a sensory ceiling with a sensory projector can help to further enhance a specific theme.
What to put in a sensory room?
Any of the above individual sensory products mentioned are ideal pieces of sensory room equipment, with many complimenting one another. Sensory rooms can be created under one specific them or designed so that every different area of the space encourages the development of a different skill, or attracts a different sense. Remember when it comes to creating a sensory room, it’s important that the user or multiple users who will be using the space are at the heart of its design so it is the most beneficial it can be for them.
If you would like any extra help in designing a sensory room, then please contact us and ask about our free sensory room design service. We’ve designed many sensory rooms over the years and would be delighted to assist in the creation of yours.