Sensory Processing Disorder Sensory Crash Mat

Do you have a sensory seeker in your center or home? Crash mats have become a popular, in-home therapy for children who require whole body sensory input. Many children with Sensory Processing Disorder (a disorder in which senses and signals are not always sent to the right part of the brain in the right order) experience this need and will resort to throwing themselves into harder objects like walls and floors or squeezing another person as hard as they can because they need to feel pressure, texture and cushion.

So now you may be asking, “Why haven’t I heard of SPD?”

“One of the reasons it’s often “unheard of” is that SPD is not included among the conditions spelled out in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM), the guide used by psychiatrists and many other clinicians—including pediatricians, psychologists, and social workers—in diagnosis. It is occupational therapists who first theorized that sensory processing issues are a source of distress for many children, and an explanation for a lot of otherwise puzzling behaviors.” –SPD is often categorized with Autism.

This no-sew crash mat is so simple to make with items you probably already have!

What You’ll Need:

  • Duvet Cover (with zipper)
  • Old Cushions (couch, chair, etc.)
  • Pillows
  • Big Fluffy Blankets
  • Scrap Foam
  • Bubble Wrap
  • Body Pillows
  • Large Stuffed Animals (without plastic pieces for eyes and noses)
  • Bean Bag Chairs
  • Anything else you have that will make a soft landing place for a sensory loving kid!

Place your chosen objects inside the duvet cover! Make sure it is thick and full enough to support a “crash landing!”

This crash mat may not be the holy grail when it comes to your child’s specific needs, but it is a great resource to add to their “sensory diet” and is worth a shot!

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