We use a combination of light, sound, touch and smell, both in the hospice and the family home (where possible) to provide a sensory experience as therapy for stimulation and /or relaxation purposes. The service is available to babies, children and young people aged 0 – 18 years. Family members, in particular siblings, also use the space to relax and recharge
How does this work?
Each of our three hospices has a special multi-sensory room which features a range of varied optical, acoustic, olfactory and tactile stimuli including:
- Colour bubble tubes
- Flexible coloured fibre optics
- Music equipment adaptable for all ages
- UV Lighting
- Colours – using the effects on physical, mental, emotional and spiritual well being
- Projection equipment
- Water beds
In addition, the hospices have mobile multi-sensory units that can be brought to a child, either in their bedroom or another part of the hospice; and a range of multisensory toys and aids that can be used in a family home.
The facility and aids are used appropriately with each individual child by care staff and trained befrienders to create the appropriate environment and multi-sensory experience; either stimulating or relaxing a child, depending on their need.
How does sensory therapy benefit a baby, child or young person?
Multi-sensory therapy offers individuals with cognitive and sensory impairments and other challenging conditions the opportunity to enjoy and control a variety of sensory experiences. Multi-sensory therapy can open up a whole new world for individuals with cognitive and sensory impairments. It can generate a relaxing and calming effect, but can also provide stimulation.
Other benefits of multi-sensory therapy include:
- Provides an environment and opportunities for learning
- Increases concentration and focuses attention
- Develops or reactivates senses of hearing, sight, smell, touch, and taste
- Heightens awareness and improve alertness
- Improves coordination and motor development
- Promotes cognitive development by increased brain function
- Leads participants to explore their environment
- Provides security
- Provides an unrestrained atmosphere where participants feel able to enjoy themselves
- Improves creativity
- Stimulates the sensory building blocks
- Develops a sense of cause and effect
- Develops language with more vocalisation
- Promotes social interactions
- Promotes mental and physical relaxation with stress levels dropping
- Aids relaxation, resulting in more calmness and lower aggressive behaviours
- Increases opportunity for choice and self-determination
- Improves communication and sharing
- Leads to non-responsive patients becoming communicative
- Provides relief from pain and painful physiotherapy