Sensory Integration is the process your central nervous system goes through when it takes in information from your body’s senses, processes that information, and then responds accordingly. Our bodies take information in through eight different sensory systems: auditory (sound/hearing), olfactory (smell), gustatory (taste), tactile (touch), vestibular (movement), proprioception (input from muscles and joints), and interoception (internal sensors indicating physiological conditions).
When we look at how to support children with sensory processing dysfunction, it is important to assess your home environment and offer sensory “tools” that provide your child with the necessary sensory activities/input to help keep them regulated throughout the day. These sensory tools can be used as part of a “sensory diet” of activities done proactively, and reactively.
WHAT IS A SENSORY TOOL BOX?
A sensory tool box is a collection of sensory strategies that will be your go-to source for sensory activities at home or at school to help your child with sensory regulation. The contents of the sensory tool box will vary depending on your child’s needs, but it’s important that whatever you choose targets some of the major sensory systems: vestibular, proprioceptive, tactile, auditory, olfactory, visual, gustatory, interoception. Multi-purpose sensory tools will allow for more flexibility of the activities you can do while still containing them all in one “box!”