Sensory items are used by children with sensory processing disorder to improve their senses, including touch. They include everything from cotton balls to soft sponges, fabric swaddles, and cloths.
The first thing I do when a new baby arrives in my life is to take inventory of the house for anything that can be used as a sensory item. The first place I look is under every bed and then every closet because it seems like there’s always something lying around somewhere. It doesn’t matter how old the child is or what developmental stage they’re at—if we have any kind of sensory items available, they will find them.
There are many different types of sensory items out there, but most of them fall into one of two categories:
– Swaddling (or crib bumpers) –
these are blankets or other fabric items that you cut out so your baby does not roll off his or her crib mattress. There are all kinds of shapes and sizes, including ones that are like giant pillows.
– Soft fabrics such as flannel, fleece, and terrycloth –
these tend to be thinner than regular cotton sheets, and babies love to wrap themselves up in them. They are often made in different shapes and patterns so that you can make some unique designs for your baby.
– Soft sponges –
these are basically little rubberized squares that absorb liquid and keep it contained. They come in different colors such as blue, pink, lime green, etc., and can also contain scents. Babies enjoy rubbing them on their skin and hearing the sound they make when they hit a hard surface.
– Fabric swaddles –
these are usually rectangular and can be made in different textures, such as flannel, fleece, terrycloth, muslin, etc. They are usually about the size of a blanket, but can sometimes be smaller. You can also use these to create custom swaddle blankets.
– Cotton balls –
these are small, round pieces of cotton that you can use like erasers to rub against an area of your baby’s body. Many people also add scented oil to the cotton balls to give them a nice smell. These can be used anywhere on the body, but are mostly used for touching and holding.
– Foam cushions –
these are usually shaped like a ball and can come in all sorts of different sizes. They are commonly sold online and in toy stores, but can also be found at discount retailers such as Walmart and Target. Some brands of foam cushions are thicker and more durable than others, so keep that in mind before purchasing.
– Soft swells –
these are larger versions of the foam cushions, and come in various shapes and sizes. They often contain scents and/or fragrances to help mask odors if needed. If you don’t know which type of foam cushion would best suit your needs, you might want to ask your doctor or pediatrician.
– Velcro strips –
these are similar in shape to foam cushions but are much thinner. They are great for covering areas where babies may get irritated by clothing, such as diaper rash, nosebleeds, etc., and can be used to secure items on the body.
– Foam cups –
these are large, hollow containers designed for holding liquids and are usually filled with water. They come in many colors and can hold just about anything. They can be used to soothe sore gums, or can even be used as ice packs.
– Blankets –
these can come in almost any color imaginable, but are generally made of wool or plush fleece. They are meant to be wrapped around a child to provide comfort during naps or bedtime, although they can also be used for snuggling.
– Pillows –
these can be stuffed with any number of things, including feathers, down, polyester fiberfill, etc. They can also be used to provide support during naps or bedtime, or to help relieve pressure points on certain parts of the body.
– Slippers –
these are typically flat and thin and can be made of leather, suede, faux fur, or synthetic material. They can be worn indoors or outdoors and are often used to warm feet in winter months.
– Socks –
these can be made of any number of materials, including cotton, bamboo, nylon, acrylic, wool, etc. They can also come in several different colors and patterns. They are especially good for babies who may be sensitive to cold weather.
– Blanket animals –
these can come in the form of plush bears, rabbits, dogs, cats, etc. They provide soothing companionship and can also help teach children about animal care.
As far as sensory toys go, there are really only two main categories. The first is those that help stimulate your baby’s senses, and the second is those that help calm him or her down. Here are some examples of both:
– Sound machines –
these are devices that play sounds through headphones or speakers. Most of them feature multiple settings so that you can choose between different sounds and speeds (slow, medium, fast). These can be extremely helpful for calming a baby down after a long nap or while he or she is sleeping. They also make great travel companions because they won’t wake up the whole plane or hotel room.
– Baby swings –
these are portable seats that hang from the ceiling and allow infants to move back and forth. Some models even let them “fly”. These are incredibly popular among parents because they can be used in many different places, including inside and outside.
– Stuffed animals –
these can be found at almost any store, but are commonly purchased by grandparents and caregivers to help pass time with their grandchildren. They are often used to help teach children about caring for and nurturing animals.
There are also many other toys that can be given to babies with special needs, but these are the primary ones. Keep in mind that there isn’t a right or wrong answer; each family must determine what works best for them. Be sure to consult with your physician or other medical professionals regarding your options.
A person can plan to add the sensory toys in their life. In the long run the person will get the returns that will prove to be a favorable option. A person will get good results. In the long run the option will give a desirable result. In the long run the option will give good results.
Most babies develop fairly quickly, but it’s important to remember that everyone develops differently. Your doctor will probably refer you for an evaluation if your baby appears to be having trouble with any part of development, so be sure to schedule an appointment if this is the case.