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Sensory Integration Matters: Coping with Christmas with children and adults with sensory integration challenges

Christmas can be a wonderful time of year but also a stressful confusing time of year for our children. For children who are more comfortable with routine, everything is changing. Consider the following if Christmas feels stressful:

  • Stay at home – prepare relatives for different expectations
  • Spread visits over a longer time
  • Allow your child to leave the room
  • Make time to go outside
  • Minimise the build up to Christmas
  • Maintain routine
  • Only put up decorations just before Christmas
  • Avoid flashing lights
  • Don’t wrap presents individually
  • Don’t wrap presents at all
  • Put batteries in in advance
  • Share out presents over a few days
  • Give permission to open presents elsewhere – e.g. away from the giver – thank you cards can be sent afterwards
  • Choose food so it’s easy to prepare and comfortable for everyone to eat


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