Sensory issues are concerned with sights, sounds, touch, smell and taste.
The person living with autism may become overwhelmed and distressed by some senses. Click each sense below for more information:
The sound of people in a busy environment may cause major distress for the person you provide care to. Places like schools and shopping centres may be overwhelming and result in absconding or aggressive outbursts.
Lighting may affect the person you provide care to as it may overstimulate them or cause distress if it’s too bright. Or it may cause distress if lighting is too dim and things are hard to see as a result.
The texture, taste and smell of food which are strong or disliked by the individual may cause a reaction. Some individuals living with Autism may have a very limited diet and only eat certain foods for example: dry food, breakfast cereal or chicken nuggets. This can create major challenges for caregivers are you try to support the person for whom you care to eat a healthy and balanced diet.
How clothes, bedding or furniture feels causes distress for some people with Autism. This may be the textures of clothing, tags on clothing, seams on socks, fitting and fastening of shoes or hats which cover ears. If someone stands too close to the person you care for or brushes past them this may create a sensory reaction as the individual may be overwhelmed and uncomfortable.
Certain smells may be challenging for the individual to process and may cause distress and anxiety for them.