For parents of children with autism, finding suitable toys can be a challenge. Traditional toys may not provide the desired outcomes, while other toys may need to be more stimulating or challenging. Fortunately, there are toys specifically designed for autistic kids that can help them learn and grow.
One of the most common issues for autistic children is sensory overload, so it is important to find toys that don't overstimulate them. Sensory toys help children regulate their senses safely and stimulate them without overwhelming them. These toys include weighted blankets and lap pads, fidget spinners, tactile boards with different textures and materials, and sensory balls made from various fabrics.
Educational toys can be great tools for encouraging learning in autistic children. These toys help teach basic concepts such as color recognition, counting numbers, shape sorting, identifying patterns or textures, and more. Examples of educational toys include puzzles with tactile pieces that have different shapes or textures on each side. Construction sets that require children to build objects out of blocks or other materials; activity books with mazes and visual puzzles; and interactive games like Occupational Therapist approved apps or video games developed specifically for kids with autism spectrum disorder (ASD).
Picture cards to aid communication are another toy specifically designed for autistic kids. These cards typically contain images of everyday activities so that the child can easily communicate their wants and needs without relying heavily on verbal communication. Communication picture cards come in various styles, including laminated cards that feature photos or drawings on one side.
3D figure boards allow a child to place figures onto a board depicting specific actions, and storyboards allow a child to tell stories using pictures instead of words.
Whether you're looking for sensory-friendly items or something to promote learning in your child's life, there are plenty of options available when it comes to toys for autistic children. With some research, you can find the perfect toy that will suit your child's needs while helping them develop skills they'll use throughout their life. While traditional retail stores may not always carry what you need, online retailers offer many specialized products tailored specifically toward autistic kids!