Execute Calming Checklist
I have a mental checklist of things that work to calm my daughter. If you’re not sure what calms your child, start experimenting with sensory input or deprivation and see what works. Each child is unique and will have different things that soothe them. (Try not to use food as a reward or calming technique – it is a pattern we fall into too easily, but it doesn’t establish healthy eating habits and can contribute to future problems with food and diet).
Calming things can include: rocking, spinning, brushing with a medical brush, sensory play with the hands (water, sand, dirt, cornstarch and water, dough, etc), sensory play with the feet (walking on rocks, sand, soft grass, stomping on tapioca balls, grapes, etc), music, silence, water running, swinging, spinning, jumping, hiding in a sleeping bag or sensory sock, etc. Please share in the comments what’s worked for you!
Write down what works for your child (even better if you can draw pictures, and help your child understand what they can do to calm themselves when they feel scared or overwhelmed), and afix your Calm Down List on the refrigerator or another visible place in your house to help remind the family how you can help.