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Multi-sensory therapy

Multi-sensory sessions are valuable for Acorns children and young people

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 at Acorns

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

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