Most of us have no problem combining all our senses. For autistic children (and grownups) however, it’s a mighty challenging task. Processing stimuli from the senses of sight, smell, sound, touch, taste, balance and body is overwhelming. Those suffering from autism will often withdraw to avoid overstimulation, or try to sort out the input from their senses with self-developed soothing mechanisms and repetitive behaviours.
A significant amount of occupational therapy for autism focuses on sensory integration through specially designed programs. Some of the greatest tools for sensory integration therapy for autism type disorders are various types of swings. People with various autism spectrum disorders such as Autism, PDD, ADHD, Asperger’s, proprioceptive dysfunction and tactile defensiveness will benefit from using swings as part of their therapy.
Additionally, children and adults with Sensory Processing Disorders (also called Sensory Integration Disorders), especially those with proprioceptive or vestibular dysfunction, should definitely have swings or hammocks as a crucial element of their treatment. Read the rest of this entry »