Auditory stimulation therapy for deaf, blind, ADD, and Autism

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Auditory stimulation therapy is the use of focused sounds to produce an effect on the nervous system. This sort of stimulation can be used as a part of sensory therapy in people with disabilities such as partial deafness or blindness or in people with attention deficit disorder or autism. It can also be used to help people develop or recover language skills, and might be applied as part of an accelerated learning program.

For people with hearing impairments or auditory processing disorders, auditory stimulation is believed to help increase their ability to process sounds. Some types of auditory stimulation allow a patient to manipulate sounds using gestures or body movement while other types might relate sound to visual stimulation like pictures or colors.

Auditory stimulation therapy can also be used for patients with disabilities in developing, understanding, or producing language, to train their brains to focus on the frequencies and sounds necessary to accurately interpret speech. This type of therapy combines listening to recorded music and language phonemes to increase the brain's ability to tune out “unnecessary” sounds, like background noise or very low frequency sounds.

People with autism, dementia, or brain damage can use combined sensory stimulation like Snoezelen Multi-Sensory Environment therapy for relaxation or learning purposes. Developed in the Netherlands, Snoezelen rooms are places where patients can manipulate lights, sounds, and various types of tactile stimuli to create an environment in which he or she is comfortable or happy. This type of therapy does not have a focused outcome, but rather is designed to stimulate and comfort the patient.

Auditory stimulation that combines music and language is central to the theory behind Suggestopedia, a language teaching method developed by Bulgarian psychologist Georgi Lozanov. This approach to second language learning combines Baroque music and a teacher reading target language material. Lozanov believes that music at 60 beats per minute, which mimics the human heartbeat, helps create a calm, relaxing environment where students lose their fears associated with learning, which leads them to acquire the new language more effectively.

In some self-contained and mainstream classrooms, students with autism are provided with a diversity of learning tools and educational toys to enhance and engage them in the learning process and outcome. Below are tips that teachers can use in selecting educational toys that will serve the needs of children with autism in their classrooms:

Pace of cognitive and emotional development varies in autistic children. When selecting toys for autistic children, use their IEP (Individual Education Plan) to find out developmentally and cognitively what toys will provide learning opportunities and maximize academic and behavioral skills.

Do not buy toys that are divided in several pieces, but try to buy toys in one big piece to reduce choking hazards or losing of pieces. Avoid buying toys that break easily since autistic students may have difficulty handling fragile toys for long periods of time.

If you are thinking of gifting a book, buy a book with stiff paper or plastic book so that an autistic child could not tear it because some autistic children enjoy tearing and ripping papers.

Toys should be such that they integrate the senses of the autistic child. For example, drums, keyboards, and xylophones involve motor, visual and auditory stimulation. These toys are ideal for developing gross motor, visual and auditory skills.

Select toys with different shapes and colors such as bubble blower, picture or word lotto, drawing, coloring and painting books to help autistic students experience and apply an integration of their sensory skills .

Toys can be selected that involve physical exercise such as swing, slide, football, rocking horse etc. which can help autistic students focus and engage in an activity for extended periods of time.

7) Repetitive behavior is a characteristic of autistic children. Repetitive motion calm autistic children. Therefore toys with push button, turn knob will keep them busy.

8) Some autistic children are hypersensitive to loud noises and certain colors. So if you buy musical toys for an autistic child it could be torturous and disengaging for him/her. Use the student's IEP to make appropriate toy selections.

9) Toys that involve co-operative and collaborative peer teamwork will help autistic children to develop social skills. These educational toys will help autistic children to learn to share and communicate with their peers.

10) For younger autistic children you may also consider tickets or memberships to sports club, visit to museum, zoos where the child could enjoy and learn new things.

Toys for autistic students can come in a variety of shapes, sizes, colors and weights in addressing the diversity of learning styles and needs of students navigating their own educational journey through hundreds of classrooms and doing it in a way that is unique to the autism that defines them, but that doesn't confine them in being successful in learning

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I am coming to the conclusion that Monica has a need for auditory stimulation.

Do you have any suggestions about some toys that he might like that would help him get the need for auditory stimulation? Preferably something that he can't press the buttons over and over and over.

Any water toys he might like

Large punch bowl with water for boats, cups, straws (blow bubbles) squirt toys.

rice and beans bin with construction dump truck, shovels, little toys to hide underneath so he can find them.

playdough and cookie cutter shape to make stories out of, birthday candles. etc..

Bin of all animals..had to sort farm animals from zoo animals and work on imitation their sounds

Creepy crawly rubber bugs, snakes, worms, grasshoppers, crickets, cockroaches, spiders, centipedes, ants, butterfies ect..

Shaving cream on a table for him to place hands in ...draw a pic..make him erase fast or it again.

Trunk of instruments: drums, tamboree, bells, triangles. toy flutes, horns, xylophones.ect.. let him play to music and march around the house together.

Roll him up in blanket and swing him

Finger paint

Sweet, sour and salty tasting: lime chips, lemon, pickles, m&m's, jelly beans, fries

Roll him while holding him on floor lying down and roll across the room


Jump on bed

Find kid song tapes to sing & dance with together

Mason does a lot of that kind of stuff too...he takes the dogs toys and squeezes them and releases right in his ear, over and over, anything with buttons

He has a sensory diet at school and it consists of:

Shaving cream table, brushing, riding the pedal bike, being wrapped in one of those body socks or laying down with the weighted blanket, and something we call body bumping...where he gets to run in the ball pit and basically bounce off the walls, lol...that is his favorite!! He does a lot of fine motor type things too, like putting pennies in a bank or cutting the velcro food, and does the food thing that shelley mentioned too.

I'm not sure if any of those are used for the specific thing you mentioned, now that I think about it, it doesn't seem to be, huh? But I could definitely ask his OT.

A lot of times when Mason is doing those kinds of things I have to let him, trying to distract him or change his course turns into a meltdown, but I do know that these kinds of things are getting less and less...I refuse to let him squeeze the dogs toys in his ears and that is always a meltdown, so I take him upstairs in his room and turn his music on quite loud and let him rock on his rocking horse...and we have now gotten him some of the above mentioned things and I notice that sometimes he seeks out that kind of stuff rather than the other behaviors, so we are obviously headed in the right direction!

Mason absolutely loves any of the squirting water toys now...he used to do the same thing with the pouring of the water so we tried to get a variety in the tub/pool...he still loves his bucket, but we put a spoon in there now so he has to scoop the water with the spoon instead of pouring bucket into helps with his fine motor in being able to hold that little amount of water on the spoon and getting it in the bucket!

Mason is also moderatel hearing impaired. He especially LOVES to bang anything metal and he LOVES to bang empty small soda bottles. I think he likes the vibration in both these things, not just the LOUD noise. We are ALWAYS battling over the volume of the hard rock stations he loves to listen to on the car radio (no, he HATE earphones, so that won't work).

When he was little, he clicked with the back of his tongue to make a sound an vibration inside his head near his ears. All this noise is enough to make me SCREAM! (and sometimes I do). I read that some ASD children crave a very high level of stimulation. Maybe this is why your son gravitates towards the noisy toys, doing things that involve alot of noise or movement.

We did some of the things Shelly did. We had the kidney bean box, we let him play in a pool alot, took him to a park daily, made playdoh from scratch (involved alot of sensory stimulation for his hands in kneading the dough), let him play in a sink filled with water, gave him deep massages after a bath. We took away the toys that he used repetitively or each time he became repetitive with it, we engaged him in approprite play with it.

He still needs a very high degree of stimulation but he's getting better slowly.I wonder if this is why my son has to have the T.V. up so loud? I have thought it has something to do with sensory. and like Tzoya's son likes his music loud.

Musical instruments, rain sticks, how about online computer games? There are lots of free learning games that are stimulating for the eye and ear. If your child doesn't have mouse clicking skills yet, I can give you several links to games that involve pressing any key or wiggling the mouse. Any special interests in terms of toys or characters?

We did just about everything Shelley did and still do alot of those. They make water instruments for the bath, I haven't gotten those yet but I keep saying I'm going to. I buy the foam soap at target and the baby einstein bath finger paints. The baby einstein ones are thicker and very brilliant in color. Doing the foam soap in the tub instead of the shaving cream on the table help me cut down on mess. I have 3 of them playing in it and it can get really messy. Its so thick they can sculpt with it. They love that stuff, I can barely get them out of the tub. Only problem with the finger paints, you have to wash them off the walls as soon as bath is over or it will stain the grout.

We go to a park a day, play in the kiddy pool when it's warm, and play in the tub when it's not.

It's a matter of redirecting repetitive behavior and keeping him engaged. That is so hard when you are dog-tired. Hey, he did pick up a car out his toy box yesterday. It's one of those "shake it put it on the floor and watch it go" cars. He had trouble shaking it, but REALLY liked using it for quite awhile. So hooray!

My autistic son didn't catch on to using a mouse until he was 4-1/2, about the same time that he learned to draw recognizable things (starting with faces).

I am a teacher and I use the computer at work. However, give me the links to the games. I know Zachary LOVES the computer so we need to look at getting one.

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