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Sensory Toys for Children with Autism

Of children diagnosed with autism, the vast majority (roughly 95 percent) are also diagnosed with sensory processing difficulties. Sensory sensitivities are taken into consideration when diagnosing children, along with other symptoms, and can be a significant source of anxiety and stress for autistic individuals.

To help develop their sensory processing skills and reduce anxiety, many parents turn to sensory toys; objects designed specifically to stimulate the senses. These toys often feature:

  • Bright colors, to visually stimulate
  • High contrast patterns, to help with visual processing
  • Multiple textures, to provide tactile (touch) stimulation
  • Lights and sounds, to stimulate the auditory sense
  • Movement, to encourage vestibular (balance/movement) input.

Some parents worry that providing too much sensory input will overwhelm their child, but introducing these toys at a young age can help children with autism learn to process and respond to sensory information in a more positive way.


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