Helpful Ways for Dealing with Sensory Problems
When a member of the family has sensory processing problems and sensitivity to noises, outings like fireworks can be tough. While commonly found in children with autism spectrum disorders, other kids may have this problem, too. Here are some helpful tips to deal with sensory problems such as fireworks. They can also be adapted for noisy family outings, too!
If your child covers their ears when a fire alarm goes off, or a loud vehicle drives by, going to see fireworks or joining a noisy family outing may not be the happy event you were hoping for.
Here’s a free social rules story, quick to print, staple and read, that I’ve made to help you out. Just click here. While the topic is going to see fireworks, the ideas and tips are useful for any noisy gathering.
This is no guarantee that this will make your fireworks event problem-free. However, knowing what to expect, having a coping method, and discussing any issues is a great start to dealing with sensory problems.
5 tips for sensory problems on family outings
Having back up plans as parents can be helpful, too. Some ideas that could be helpful include:
- watching your child with sensory problems for the beginning signs of sensory overload. Intervening early is often more successful than waiting for full-blown overload.
- having a signal your child can give you to tell you that they have had enough.
- getting seating that is toward the back of the crowd. This may not only somewhat decrease the noise level from the fireworks, but can also reduce the overcrowdedness that can also be a problem for some children.
- having a larger blanket than you need so that your child has a place to sit with boundaries that keep crowds further away.
- coming with 2 cars so one parent can leave earlier if needed, or having a plan for one parent to remove the sensory child before overload occurs to the car. Have calming toys, blankets, headphones, or whatever works for your child to use during the wait.
If your child regularly has problems with sensory processing issues, get an appointment for an evaluation with an occupational therapist who is knowledgeable about the problem. That is where most of my knowledge comes from!
I hope that some of these ideas help to make your 4th of July and noisy family outings fun and calm!