Many autistic children suffer from varying degrees of sensory awareness issues. Sights, sounds, and textures can be one of the most overwhelming obstacles your child will face everyday. Believe it or not, the beach is a great place to work through many issues.
Below are some of the issues that can be addressed while enjoying the sands of the beach.
Believe it or not, waves are LOUD...REALLY LOUD... If your child has issues with loud noises, the beach is loud and calming at the same time. It is amazing how quickly while chasing the waves the sound diminishes and their ears adjust to the sounds at the increased noise levels.
This is much harder to do while standing on the sand. Many of you have probably seen the rice filled pools at your therapist office. Think of the beach as a super giant rice filled pool. There are so many other sights and sounds to enjoy, it is amazing how quickly they forget about having something touching the bottoms of their feet. One full day at the beach can almost replace a month's worth of rice pool sessions.
Walking on sand is amazing for improving overall core muscle strength and stability. One of the hardest things to overcome with late walking children is PAIN.
"Darn it!!!.. It hurts when you fall down.."
The older the child is when they are starting to take steps, the more they will have to overcome. Older children are more aware of the pain of falling. Many times, this inhibits the child from even wanting to try to take steps. Sand doesn't hurt when they fall.
Vestibular sensitivity is one of the lesser known sensory challenges of many children with autism. Vestibular sensory issues have to do with the relationship of the human body to the world and balance. If your child enjoys rocking and swinging, they are definitely trying to overcome vestibular sensitivity. Simply sitting and watching the waves move in and out also helps address the need to self soothe like nothing available in a traditional therapist's office.
The weather is beautiful. Now is the perfect time to contact us to book your beach vacation.
Beach Vacations Provide Unique Opportunities for Special Needs Families
While most families rush to the beach during the summer months, fall beach vacations can provide unique opportunities for families with special needs children. In the fall the water is still warm enough to enjoy full days at the beach. It is also much easier to find quiet areas on the sand for your children to relax without the additional stressors of the large crowds. Visiting the beach is one of the best options to combine a family vacation with a little sensory integration therapy.
From Parents, Travel Writers,