5 Tips to Prepare Your Sensory Sensitive Child for a Change in Seasons


Bare tree limbs are beginning to sprout green leaves as we replace snowy sledding Saturdays for sandbox castle Sundays.


The transition from winter to spring may mean warmer weather, longer daylight hours and more outdoors play. But for children with sensory sensitivity, a new season brings several new adaptations.

 

“We should remember to be patient and understanding, these children are not being defiant or 'naughty' and will look to us parents, teachers, therapists, etc. for help during these transitions.” — According to Danielle Lloyd, Occupational Therapist at Little Lukes.


Here are 5 tips to help prepare your child for the calendar change.


1. Wear Spring Clothing Early

 

“A lot of the changes that come with a new season can have a bigger impact on children with sensitivities to sensory input,” says Danielle. Children with sensory processing issues are highly sensitive to textures, especially when it comes to the clothes. To make the transition smoother for your child, expose him or her to softer apparel choices ahead of time before they are required to wear it. Even if spring isn’t for a few weeks, getting them comfortable to feeling different fabrics on their skin while in the home will ease the sensitivity when it comes time to start wearing the clothing outside.

 

2. Allow Them The Space to Explore Different Options

Take some time to prepare your child’s spring wardrobe by letting them try on each clothing item at their own pace. This process can be important if your child has a hard time getting dressed. It helps to stick to one room in the house when it comes time to get dressed to build trust and familiarity with the process.

3. Develop a Routine

 

Creating a ritual to make getting dressed for school or going out predictable removes some hassle and guesswork. If there’s already a dressing process involved, keep the same order. Sometimes, sensory sensitive children like to get dressed by following a routine, underwear first, then shirt, pants, socks, etc. in a way that makes it easier for them.

 

4. Prevent Allergies

 

“We often overlook or embrace these seasonal changes that can be drastic to the system of a sensory-sensitive child,” says Danielle. Spring is beautiful, but it’s also a time of year for seasonal allergies come airborne pollen and mold spores. While preparing your child for a change in seasons may require special attention, their allergies can make the transition more difficult.

 

One in four U.S. children suffer from allergies. Tree pollen is one of the most common spring allergen leading to allergy symptoms such as sneezing, stuffy nose and itching. Allergies can complicate the simplest allergies for your child, from attending school to eating and playing outside. With proper planning, your child can still find time to participate in fun activities while combatting allergy symptoms. Find some time to consult with a doctor for allergy medications to reduce unpleasant situations for your child and consider these tips:

·       Rinse out allergens from nasal passages daily by using a saline solution such as Little Noses, Simply Saline or a similar saline-only product.

·       Keep it cool. To keep pollen out when the weather’s hot, air condition your car and home and keep windows closed.

·       Wash hair and body at the end of each day to remove pollen and other allergens.

·       Wash window screens to clear them from pollen and other allergens.


5. Soft Clothing

 

Soft, breathable fabrics make it easier for your child to adapt to the season change. Sometimes it’s best to keep shirts soft and tag-less to remove irritation. Since bamboo fabrics are made from viscose, these are some of the softest fabrics you can find in the world. Soft clothing will be easier on their skin so they don’t feel it throughout the day, which can distract them and create a feeling of discomfort.

 

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Little Lukes Preschool & Childcare Center is a leading Central New York daycare provider with five locations. Little Lukes is an early education program whose credentialed and caring staff specializes in comprehensive infant, toddler and pre-kindergarten development. Additional services include speech therapy, physical therapy and occupational therapy for babies, toddlers and preschool children.

 

For optimal protection and safety for both students and staff, our facilities include keypad security doors and classroom-installed cameras. As a registered daycare center complying with nationwide regulations, Little Lukes creates a secure and engaging environment for children to develop and reach their individual goals.

 

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