Hygiene is an area fraught with sensory issues. Not only does it involve water and soaps of different kinds, but it also makes your skin, hair, teeth, etc. feel different. Most of us get so used to the differences that we never even think of them until there is a time when we can’t do our usual hygiene routine. We go camping in the wilderness for a few days or the electricity goes out taking parts of our hygiene routine with it. We know that our body feels different, but we usually miss feeling “clean”. We miss this without thinking about how our bodies feel differently before, during and after the hygiene process. For a person with sensory issues, this daily change can be frustrating. Some parts of the hygiene process may be easier to withstand than others. Looking at hygiene in this way, we gain a greater understanding of the resistance that we may encounter. This resistance hinders the learning process and makes this an area that we have to address throughout our lives. Individuals with autism and other neurodevelopmental disorders enjoy routines. An established hygiene routine can help them to be able to tolerate the sensory sensations that come with hygiene. The videos below are an example of the types of instructional videos that can be used to teach these hygiene skills. Videos can also be a source of third-party instruction that alleviate the resistance to authority that sometime develops around these activities.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-CGXveAPI70 - Life Skills with Mr.Joe: Episode 5 (How to wash your hands)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IhLlvkdB7zk - Life Skills with Mr.Joe: Episode 9 (Brushing your Teeth)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lk9CUE5Rs4E - How to take care of your nails!
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x0tQqPsZd7I - Our bodies stink!
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n9u_7R-0BiA – How to Wash Your Hair Properly
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hzYMtFyjZqQ – How to Use Conditioner after You Shampoo
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D5BtnvQqbWs - Personal Hygiene for Kids - Hygiene Habits - Showering, Hand Washing, Tooth Brushing, Face Washing