Sensory issues can be difficult to deal with. Sensory issues can range from mild to severe. Some may only have slight issues in vision. Others may see things in fragments, like a mosaic.
Here are some tips for different types of sensory issues
Auditory: earplugs are very helpful for auditory sensitivity. I use earplugs at places where it is noisy. If I don’t have my earplugs in then it is loud and uncomfortable to deal with. I got my earplugs from Amazon.com and they are the Etymotic earplugs in the color frost.
Taste: I gag on food sometimes. I cannot stand the texture of bananas (they are slimy!) so I usually eat at home and if I am out in public , I have to bring my lunchbox with me with food I can eat inside of it. Sometimes there is food that I can eat at events.
Smell: the easiest thing to do is to get away from the smell. I hate the smell of oatmeal. It is revolting to me. I have to go into the other room to keep myself from getting sick to my stomach. 😦
Touch: I don’t like hugs. I can tolerate a hug if I know when it is coming, but I do not like sudden bear hugs. This overwhelms my sensory system and causes me to stiffen up my whole body. They are only a couple people that I think I could have hug me, or have me hug them. Some things to try is to wear a weighted vest, wear a squeeze vest, use a weighted blanket, use a weighted lap pad, or brush with a therapy brush. I find telling people that I have issues with touch and hugs is helpful.
Visual: I do not like bright, flashing, flickering, or pulsing lights. I get overloaded by the flash of a camera. I advise using sunglasses for sensitivity to light and also telling people with cameras to turn the flash off is a good idea.
Meltdown: a meltdown is where an individual is so overwhelmed by sensory stimuli that they cannot function. During a meltdown an individual may scream, cry, throw himself/herself on the ground, start self injuring, etc. It is important to not get angry at a person having meltdown. Stay calm and take the person to a quiet place to recover.
Shutdown: a shutdown is where an individual gets too much information and shuts down. The individual may not respond when talked to. It may take a while for the individual to come out of a shutdown. Taking the individual to a quiet place to recover is a good idea.
Overload: Overload is where the individual is constantly overwhelmed by sensory stimuli and this can escalate into a meltdown or go downhill into a shutdown. The best thing for overload recover is a quiet place.
I hope this helps anyone out there who has sensory issues or anybody who knows somebody who has sensory issues.
photo credit: One Way Stock <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/60141638@N06/9207097102″>Black Clipboard</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a> <a href=”https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/2.0/”>(license)</a>