What are the best sensory gift for teens?
First, it has to be a product they want! It’s not rewarding to give a gift that teenager is going to toss into the deep recesses of their closet. Second, it has to benefit one or more senses. The entire idea is to stimulate your teenagers sensory system and help them to help themselves if they’re feeling stressed or out-of-sorts.
Hormones are hard enough on our teenagers, so let’s make their lives easier and more enjoyable by treating their sensory systems to some TLC (tender loving care). My theory is, if you have to purchase gifts for the holidays, make them gifts that count! Shhhhhh, don’t tell them there is therapeutic value already included.
***Affiliate links for amazon.com provided below, but you may find these items at your local mall, Costco, and at many online stores. I always shop around for the best prices out there.
These are great to visually mesmerize your teenager to sleep, or calm them after school before doing homework. Lava Lamps are beautiful, soothing, and cool. A must have for your sensory teen!
Not just for hippies, these are wonderful for proprioception. Just think, it’s like giving your teen a big,bear hug. After a long day, your teen may need to chill out or play some video games. It’s hard work keeping it together at school. Lovesac offers these deluxe beauties in 6 foot bean bag and 4 foot been bag. Maybe you can cozy up and read a book in it when your teen isn’t home! They are so comfy.
I don’t think we ever outgrow the awesomeness of these simple toys. We recently got the Original Slinky Ginormous Rainbow and it’s given us endless entertainment on the stairs, or just playing with it as a fidget. They’re truly mesmerizing and calming. Score!!
Many teenagers are into music and what better way to relax after a long day at school than listening to their favorite tunes? There are many options for noise-reduction headphones to give their auditory system a break from outside noises. Headphones are an investment, so make sure your teen takes proper care to keep them in a safe place when not in use. Sony, BOHM wireless, and Bose are all excellent. Many teens insist on Beats. Choose whatever is best for your teen.
We use this Calily Essential Oil Diffuser below. It’s easy to use, is attractive, and super powerful. An entire room is infused with lemongrass in minutes. Create a pleasurable scent experience that is soothing and alerting in one. Great for using while doing homework. **The diffuser does get hot so please use with caution and in a dry, safe, place.
Use any essential oils you please. I usually purchase organic oils at Lassens, but I adore these Calily Essential Oils as well. We use Lavender for sleep prep, Eucalyptus or Tea Tree Oil at night to keep our sinuses clear, Peppermint or Lemongrass for alertness, and Sweet Orange as a stress reliever.
Almost any camera is great for your teenager’s visual motor skills. If your teenager is uncomfortable in social situations, often having a prop or activity like photography can give them an ice breaker, or a focus until they feel comfortable to interact. It’s also a wonderful way to express their creativity.
We like the Insta-Mini 8 camera because it gives instant feedback and is easy to use, there’s not a lot to it. You can write on the blank Fujifilm Instax Mini Exposures.
Pick up some fun rainbow, stained glass, candy pop, and shiny star instant film options so your teen can fill up their bulletin board with their favorite pictures.
What can be more soothing than a relaxing foot spa? If your son is reluctant, plant him in a Lazy Boy in front of his favorite movie or while playing a video game. He’ll come around quickly. You can add Tea Tree Oil Epson Salt if he has a foot odor issue, or Lavender Epson Salt if you’re looking for optimum relaxation. This goes for the young ladies too!
In our home, we fully utilize the spa day experience. We love bath bombs and neck and shoulder wraps. You’d be amazed at how quickly a headache goes away with a large glass of water and a heated neck. If it’s a sinus headache that your teenager is prone to, try these hot/cold gel face masks. Absolutely divine. And don’t ever under estimate the power of comfy, cozy socks.
Sophisticated coloring books have been all the rage this year and there’s good reason, they’re known to be soothing. What better way to decompress after a long day at school? Find stress relieving animal designs, pattern designs, and flower designs. Not convinced? Check out this article on how coloring combats stress in adults.
Colored pencils and a pencil sharpener wrap up this gift that keeps on giving. Maybe your teen will even share a page or two with you.
Teens and young adults benefit greatly from fidgets. Often they can reduce stress during a test, a meeting, or anytime someone is feeling anxiety. Some fidgets have a key ring so they can be attached to backpacks (helps to not lose them), and some can fit in the front of backpacks to be easily accessible when needed. And having a teenager, I know that gadgets and games are cool. Other kids will either want to play with them too, or they won’t even notice the fidgets.
It’s empowering for teenagers to be able to cook for themselves, which is why these easy to use kitchen gadgets made the Best Sensory Gifts for Teenagers list. To be able to learn which flavors they prefer, different textures, and a variety of smells. Cooking is one of the transitions to independence and a vitally important life skill.
My teen loves to make blueberry waffle sticks, gluten free donuts, and quesadillas. Teach them to use these kitchen gadgets safely and watch their taste buds soar.
I recommend these for your teenager, or if you have to purchase a gift for someone else’s teenager. Why juggling balls? Because the act of juggling is scientifically proven to reduce anxiety, build white matter in your brain (creating better overall health and improves hand eye coordination), and may improve academic work. Check out this article, The 5 Benefits of Juggling if you so desire. Find this set of juggling balls and a video here.
Okay, some of these items are just different and cool. Light-up shoelaces. Color-changing lighted shower head. Now that’s a sensory experience I’d like to try out! Karaoke dance machine. Now, that’s a sensory gift for the entire family. Have fun with it. Provide the sensory experiences that you feel will be most beneficial for your teenager.
Now I’m obsessing over this light up keyboard. Since I often find myself typing in the dark, this could be awesome! My teenager will go nuts for this. How about yours?