What is a sensory room?
A sensory room is a specially designed room which combines a range of stimuli to help individuals develop and engage their senses. These can include lights, colours, sounds, sensory soft play objects, aromas all within a safe environment that allows the person using it to explore and interact without risk.
Sensory rooms can help those who have learning difficulties, developmental disabilities or sensory impairments learn to interact with the world around them, but in a safe environment that builds up their confidence and their ability. The user gets an unrestrained non-threatening space where they can explore at their own leisure. This freedom lets their teacher, therapist or carer see what calms them, rouses them and what they like or don’t.
Also referred to as multi-sensory rooms, these spaces can present themselves in many different forms in order to be tailored entirely to a user’s needs. For example, sensory bathrooms are extremely beneficial for users who find bath time very stressful, often seen with those who have dementia or emotional and behavioural difficulties. Whereas, darks rooms are more beneficial for those with visual impairments. Both types of sensory room feature very different products that are helpful to those who will be predominantly using the space.
We find we often get asked a lot of questions regarding sensory rooms for autism symptoms, to find out more about how sensory equipment helps autism and some of the most effective products to help autistic children, in particular, please read our previous post.
Benefits of a sensory room
There are a whole host of benefits of a sensory room for those who require them, some of these include:
By encouraging the user to engage and explore the environment then it can have positive effects on their ability to react and interact with the larger world around them.
Enhance learning through play
Following on from this, sensory stimulation can engage different areas of the brain, helping children absorb and retain more information and better meeting the needs of the individual.
Improve balance, movement and spatial orientation
Sensory rooms can help develop users’ visual processing abilities as well as their fine and gross motor skills, facilitating day-to-day living.
Tackle problems with behaviour
Sensory environments can be highly absorbing, providing a moment of comfort and calm for overactive and distressed individuals, and helping inactive individuals to feel more engaged, providing a clear focus.
These are just a handful of the benefits of a sensory room. At Experia, we pride ourselves on having the experience and knowledge to know what will work for each user, the abilities they have and the skills you're aiming to help them develop. However, we do also appreciate that multi-sensory rooms may not always fall into everyone’s budget bracket, which is why we’ve written a guide on creating a sensory space on a budget, giving tips on how you can partake in fundraising.