The Holidays: Help Your Child Combat Sensory Overload

The holidays are wonderful, but sometimes very distracting and overwhelming to kids who suffer from sensory disorders or autism.  So what should you do?


…just be patient; it’s the holidays!

autism and the holidays


First, and foremost, continue to stick to your routine as much as possible.

Kids still are expecting routine and that routine calms them.

Another great idea is to remind your child the rules/expectations, especially before you arrive to a holiday party or activity.  Talk to your child about what they can expect and remind them of the rules.  During the holidays, kids can get overwhelmed so constant reminders will help.

The holidays - help your child combat sensory overload

During the holidays, try to be extra prepared!  If your child likes to touch, keep stress balls or fidgets in your purse or pocket.   Silencing headphones may be kept in your car for the unexpected host that likes to blast holiday music.  More breaks or alone time may be required.  Your child may seek a quiet spot at a party for a break from all the stimulation.  I always pack our son’s DS and headphones.  Usually after an hour or so of noise and chaos, he prefers to be alone for a bit, away from people.

It may also help to give your child extra rest.  Before all the crazy holiday parties prep your child by going to bed an extra 20 minutes earlier for a few nights.  Over-stimulating activities can be exhausting!

The holidays - help your child combat sensory overload

Finally, just be patient.  It is the holidays!

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