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Multi Sensory Environment

MULTI SENSORY ENVIRONMENT STUDIO is a dedicated space or room where sensory stimulation can be controlled, intensified or reduced, presented in isolation or combination, packaged for active or passive interaction, and matched to fit the perceived motivation, interests, leisure, relaxation, therapeutic and/or educational needs of the individual. It has different pieces of equipment that provides VISUAL, AUDITORY, OLFACTORY, TACTILE, VESTIBULAR, and PROPRIOCEPTIVE SENSORY input.

The Multi Sensory Environment Studio has two main objectives:

  • to encourage cognitive stimulation behavioral 
  • to provide a place of relaxation and behavioral self-regulation

In 1966, Cleland and Clark, both American psychologists started the theory around the positive effects of Multi Sensory Environment (MSE). They postulated that individuals with cognitive and behavioral impairments can be assisted through stimulation of the senses. They used “Sensory Cafeterias” as rooms where the various senses of an individual with cognitive or behavioral impairments are stimulated.

In the mid-70s, Ad Verheul & Jan Hulsegge, therapists from Netherlands, further developed the concept of multi-sensory stimulation to improve the well-being of individuals with severe and profound developmental disabilities. They referred to their multi-sensory environments as Snoezelen (from the words “snufflen” meaning to search, seek out and explore and “doezelen” meaning to relax). They designed special rooms that offer various forms of sensorial stimulation such as lights, sound elements, wind (breezes), aroma and music, tactile surfaces, moving images and other sensory experiences in settings that were both comfortable and safe. Snoezelen is a term still used to refer to a Multi Sensory Room in Europe.

In 1992, the first Multi-Sensory Environment room was established in Brooklyn, New York by Linda Messbauer, an occupational therapist, to offer people with challenging conditions the opportunity to enjoy and control a variety of sensory experiences.

In 2006, the American Association of Multi Sensory Environments (AAMSE) was founded to provide awareness, information and research around concepts of Multi-Sensory Environments and the positive effects it has on people with various conditions.

And now in the Philippines, the first Multi - Sensory Environment Studio will be introduced as part of an occupational therapy program in a different atmosphere to give the needed individualized sensory diet for people with various kinds of disabilities and those with a variety of challenging behaviors.

MULTI - SENSORY ENVIRONMENT Benefits:

Positive effects include (but not limited) development and/or enhancement of:

Sensory-Motor Skills

  • Advances coordination and motor development
  • Develops or reactivates senses of hearing, sight, smell, touch, and taste
  • Encourages participants to explore their environment
  • Incites the sensory building blocks

Cognitive Skills

  • Enhances cognitive development by increased brain function
  • Elicits creativity
  • Improves language – produces more vocalization
  • Increases concentration and focus attention
  • Increases awareness and improves alertness
  • Instills a sense of cause and effect

Social and Emotional Skills

  • Advances wellness
  • Encourages communication and sharing; encourages non-responsive patients t be communicative
  • Encourages social interactions
  • Gives a sense of security
  • Promotes calmness and decreases aggressive behaviors
  • Provides avenues for choice and self-determination
  • Provides relief from pain and painful physiotherapy
  • Provides an unrestrained atmosphere where participants feel that they can have fun
  • Upholds mental and physical relaxation - a place where an individual can de-stress

POSSIBLE Applications

Some conditions that respond favorably with MULTI SENSORY ENVIRONMENT (MSEs) are:

  • Attention Deficit Disorders and Attention Deficit/Hyperactive Disorders
  • Autism Spectrum
  • Anxiety Associated with Substance Abuse
  • Dementia (Alzheimer’s Disease)
  • Depression
  • Developmental Disabilities
  • Pervasive Developmental Disorders
  • Post Traumatic Stress Disorders
  • Sensory Processing Problems
  • Stroke
  • Traumatic Brain Injury
  • Visual Impairment
  • Mental Retardation

References:

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We are looking for people to join our team.The following positions are still available: Occupational Therapist, Speech Pathologist and Special Education Teachers. For interested parties, please email us your resumes.