Looking for sensory solutions on the go? Taking a trip to the doctors office, to visit relatives or a long vacation? Though nothing can quite compare to a sensory savvy permanent space filled with bubble tubes, sound system and fiber optics dazzled with just the perfect lighting, sometimes life calls for a road trip and you may just need to take your sensory room on the go! Crazy as it sounds that extra bag stuffed into the back of your car, may just be a lifesaver. Whether you’re an itinerant therapist or you need your sensory room to go on a family outing, there are some key components that might just save the day. Lets take a quick look at some items you may need to be ready to up and go with sensory intelligence.
Cozy: Your sensory sac should contain something comforting. It may be a favorite pillow, a weighted blanket, a cushion to sit on, a weighted lap pad or a stuffed animal. Weighted items don’t have to pull you down. Just a couple pounds added to your favorite pillow or stuffed friend can act as a cushion and a lap pad combined. The weight adds as a great filter to a long car trip and can help calm and organize.
Lighting: Does the individual in need a special night light or have a light up toy. You can toss in some fiber optic strands, a portable bubble tube or small light up object to act as a visual tracker or distraction. Though light up and noisy toys can often do more harm than good, there are some electronic devices that can engage and soothe the brain.
Fidget Toy: We all like to fidget and often need to fidget. Make sure your travel sensory sac has a few fidget toys to keep fingers and hands busy while on your trip. Fidgeting can help reduce anxiety and provide a great outlet for fine motor work. It can be a hand held puzzle or a manipulative.
Music: A must for any trip. Pack up their favorite sounds and grab a great set of noise cancelling ear buds to go along. A list of songs can go a long way on your trip. Adding in some classical music or music that teaches can be very useful as well. Books on tape are terrific for learning, listening and passing the time.
Pop up Tent: These are not so hard to find and provide a great sensory room once you get where you are going. A pop up tent can provide your sensory seeker or sensory over responder with a quiet place to calm or sleep. Make sure you get one that is easy to stuff back into your bag and take a trail run opening and closing it up before you hit the road.
Mouth tools: Make sure your sensory sack has some oral motor tools as well as be sure you’ve packed plenty of crunchy foods and snacks that require sucking and or chewing. Keeping the mouth busy can do wonders for sensory integration dysfunction and make your travels much easier. Vibrating mouth tools or an electric tooth brush can help to calm, organize and reduce frustrations while on the road.
What items are your favorite for travel with your sensory individual? We’d love to know!