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Sensory Room Helps Children Cope with Difficult Environments

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Author name: Lee Health


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Seeking treatment for a child with a sensory processing disorder can be a stressful experience. Many parents will avoid overwhelming locations such as waiting rooms that have too many bright lights and loud noises. 

Since there are a limited number of sensory-friendly environments available, children’s health can be put at risk when parents can’t schedule care visits for medical conditions, injuries and more. 

That’s why Lee Health created a new intervention option for children and families and continues to pave the way for accessible care through continued education and certifications.

The Golisano Children’s Health Center in Naples recently unveiled a new sensory room to assist patients with a variety of sensory disorders such as autism, sensory modulation disorder, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), and more.

Located in the Kids’ Urgent Care, this sensory space serves as a full-service clinic room where patients can spend their visit in comfort, using a dynamic combination of visual, tactical, and auditory stimuli.

“Our team is trained to recognize the needs of a child from the moment they walk in,” says Stephanie Dowzak, a Certified Child Life Specialist at the clinic. 

This specially trained team is committed to ensuring access to care for every patient regardless of behavioral challenges that may come up in an urgent care setting. Our experts identify signs of stress such as difficulty concentrating or bursts of strong emotion, and they quickly escort patients to the room to help enhance their experience. 

Similar to the sensory room located at Pediatric Procedural Sedation Center at Golisano Children’s Hospital in Fort Myers, this new sensory space in Naples puts patients and families at ease during stressful situations. The room can be lightened or darkened based on specific patient needs, and the team can utilize engaging tools like the bubble tube, fiber optic light strands, or dynamic seating options.

“Sensory environments can be highly beneficial in providing comfort to those in need. Parents have been super happy with the room and the effect it’s had on their child,” Stephanie says.

A variety of therapeutic sensory integration products help children cope with their environment. Massage balls, weighted lap pads, and therapressure brushes help with sensory issues, and while noise-canceling headphones assist with auditory needs. A variety of handheld fidgets and soothing visual tools further enhance a patient’s comfort.

“I remember a mom tearing up when she saw everything,” says Kaylee Berman, lead customer service representative. “I’m just the person who takes people back to the room when they come in, but I could see the significance. She turned to me and said, ‘I knew you all would be able to take care of her. I knew you were the best option.’”

Although the sensory room is inside the pediatric urgent care, experts stress that the space can be used by any patient who needs a soothing environment while at the Golisano Children’s Health Center. Lee Health prioritizes keeping patients and families at ease, regardless of the reason for visiting.

The Lee Health Kids’ Urgent Care, 3361 Pine Ridge Road in Naples, accepts walk-ins and is open every day from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. If you think your child could benefit from the sensory room, please let the team know when you arrive.

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