Sensory Processing Disorder Parent Support
Sensory Processing Disorder Parent Support 

Reducing Sensory Processing Disorder Meltdowns

Children with sensory differences ... painting the world beautiful. 

Reducing Sensory Processing Disorder Meltdowns 

Jeanette Loftus 

child with sensory processing disorder having a meltdown Reducing Sensory Processing Disorder Meltdowns
Sensory meltdowns can be very stressful for the child and for their parent too. By creating a sensory friendly diet and environment, you can reduce how often and the intensity of your child's meltdowns. There are many different strategies to create a predictable and calming sensory environment for your child to help them reduce their sensory processing meltdowns. 

 

Sensory processing meltdowns happen when a child's brain is overwhelmed by sensory input and this can lead to a fight-or-flight response. This response can cause meltdowns, aggression and withdrawal. Understanding your child's sensory triggers and sensory meltdown warnings is very important for managing and preventing their sensory meltdowns.


A sensory friendly environment minimizes sensory overload and provides a calming space for children. Here are some tips to create a calming sensory environment. 

 
 Excessive noise can be very overwhelming for children who have sensory differences. Using noise-cancelling headphones or calming music can create a more quiet environment.

 
Bright, flashing lights can be overstimulating and stressful for a child who has sensory difficulties. Using dimmer lights, blackout curtains or lamps with soft lights creates a soothing calmer atmosphere.

 

A cluttered space can be very visually overwhelming. Keeping a child's space organized and uncluttered can  reduce your child's sensory overload.

 
Choose seating for your child's sensory area that is comfortable. A few common examples would be bean bags, Kids Ergo, rocking chairs or sensory floor cushions.

 

Providing sensory tools like a weighted blanket or some sensory fidgets can help your child self-regulate their sensory input.

 

A sensory diet is a personalized plan to help a child with their sensory processing disorder that is created by your child's occupational therapist. (OT) Your child's OT will incorporate sensory activities throughout your child's day to help them regulate their sensory input. 

 

An OT will observe your child and identify their sensory preferences and aversions to determine which sensory activities will be most beneficial.

 

They will come up with a sensory diet plan for your child and schedule sensory activities into the daily routine. Some of those sensory activities could include brushing  or swinging in a sensory swing to help your child regulate their sensory input.

 

Include short sensory breaks throughout the day to help your child to recharge and refocus. Encourage your child and Include movement activities such as jumping or spinning throughout the day to help your child regulate their sensory input.

Provide your child with a variety of sensory snacks with different textures, temperatures and flavors that will give them different sensory experiences throughout their day. 

Establishing a predictable routine can help your child who has sensory differences feel more secure, in control and reducing the likelihood of them having sensory meltdowns. Create a visual schedule for your child. Use pictures or written words to create a visual schedule so their schedule is predictable. 

 

Give your child transitional warnings or a heads-up before they are transitioning to a new activity to help them prepare for the change. Maintain consistency as much as possible, even on weekends and holidays. 

Offer choices to your child within their routine to help them feel more in control. Be prepared to adjust the routine as needed to accommodate your child's sensory needs.

 

To reduce sensory processing meltdowns it will require a combination of sensory strategies including creating a sensory friendly environment, creating a sensory diet and establishing a predictable routine. 
Sensory Processing Disorder Parent Support 

Sensory Processing Disorder Resources  

Supporting, learning, sharing and growing together.
After School Restraint Collapse & Sensory Meltdowns
Children's Books For Picky Eaters & Problems Feeders
Sensory Processing Disorder Classroom Self-Regulation
What Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD) Parents Want You To Know ...
DISCLAIMER: I am not an Occupational Therapist. I am an adult who has Sensory Processing Disorder, a sensory parent and a Grandma. The information on this website is not medical advice and does not replace the information that your child's therapists gives you. These are just ideas and information that I have learned myself over the years of being a parent and an adult living with SPD. If you are concerned for your child, please always seek medical attention through a family doctor, pediatrician or therapist. This website is for suggestions and informational purposes only. Each child is different and what works for one child may not for another because all children have different needs. Please always consult with a professional. Amazon offers a small commission on products sold through their affiliate links on my website.  Each of your purchases through links on my website for Amazon affiliation links or sponsored links support me but no additional cost to you so thank you. I appreciate it so much!