A R T I C L E 1 0 : R E D E S I G N I N G T H E B E D R O O M : A U T I S M
AUTISM EDGE SERIES I am very excited to share this series with you. Autism Edge was born through the journey I have embarked gathering insight and knowledge along the way. I would love to share what I have learnt in the last 6 years with you.
In this weeks article we are diving into the topic of how to design your autistic child's bedroom. What color it should be? How bright the light in the room should be? What type of therapy equipment?
There are many questions around how to design the bedroom so that they experience a safe place for them and to enhance calmness and promote sleep. The most important part is to have a room that is sensory sensitive. When we look at color of the walls, we will look at darker colors like blue, purple or green. This will help with calming the system down. Please be thoughtful on using toxic paints. No-VOC, non-toxic paints are less harmful for a child.
The light in the room is also of essential importance. Try to have sun light as the main light source in the room throughout the day. For night time use incandescent lighting or bubble lamps and lava lamps. Remove all technology devices, from tablets to televisions. Install blackout curtains to control glare or early morning light for the child to be able to sleep a little longer as we know that sleep is crucial for the body to heal and recover. Furniture, let's start with the bed. Choose fabrics that appeal to them and are soft: cotton, flannel, sateen, or t-shirt materials.
Try to avoid patterned fabrics that will over-stimulate them. Weighted blankets can support sleep patterns, as they provide deep touch pressure sensory input. Some children love them and other's don't. Keep in mind your child's sensitivities. The bed does not have to be the traditional bed we normally think about. It can be a small tent like set-up with soft cushions inside, or a plane floor mat with soft cushions around. Children sleep better lying closer to the floor.
Washable bedding and protective covers for mattresses, pillows and duvets make life easier for everyone. Use the bedroom as a multi-tasking bedroom, include a kid-size table and chair/balance ball chair to allow for tabletop play. Sensory toys help with learning and at the same time calming. Consider a soft place to rest or take a break, like a hammock or a therapy swing, a huge ball cushion works amazingly as well.
You can add bins for organizing toys and bedding, this helps by organizing distracting clutter, and they appeal to a child who needs a visually ordered environment and to avoid the child to get overstimulated. Labeling with a picture of everything in the room helps the child to understand that the objects have names and a purpose in the room. The objects have their own identity.
As children with autism are most visual learners, this will help them to organize and understand their environment in their mind. Aromatherapy help significantly in enhance the room's effect. At bedtime you can diffuse Cedarwood or Lavender and for focus and alertness use peppermint.
Essential oils also helps with killing bacteria and viruses in the air which also effects the behavior of children with autism. Send us an email to register for our Autism Edge Program for the rest of the oils that is essential for children with autism. Make sure that the essential oil you use is 100% pure with no added toxins like Young Living products.
The main aim for bedroom design for children with autism is to make it a safe zone in the house for them. Where they can relax and have a great time. A place where they can unwind and be who they are. This will not only assist in their self confidence but will assist in learning.
Keep a lookout for the article on our Facebook or Instagram account. Please let us know if you have any questions about today's article.