Choosing a Christmas present for someone with Autism or complex needs doesn’t need to be difficult. There are lots of autism friendly gifts out there, but our top tip would be to speak to the person you are buying for, or their carer, to find out what they like or dislike and for some suggestions.
You may find that your friend or loved one chooses something in particular that they would like, which can help to alleviate any stress or anxiety for them when opening their gifts and which will help you to get more organised too.
If you are still looking for ideas, have a look at our autism friendly gift guide below:
Weighted blankets can be bought from major online retailers like Amazon or Argos and are a well regarded gift in the autism community. They can help with sleep and stress anxiety and are often used as a calming method. Available in a range of styles and colours, it’s easy to find one that would suit your friend or family member.
Noise Cancelling Headphones
Christmas, or other celebrations, can sometimes be a little overwhelming with a plethora of noises and sounds everywhere you go and maybe lots more people chatting around the dinner table. For someone with autism, or those affected by sound sensitivity, noise cancelling headphones can a great gift as they help to block out extra noise and can be used to listen to whatever sounds or music they prefer.
Bean bags can be a great gift for anyone, and can come in a range of styles, prices and fabrics.
Yogibo bean bags come in a variety of sizes and styles, from large loungers to smaller comfort cushions. They are pricey, but are known for being super comfortable, moulding to your own body shape and can even be infused with calming aromatherapy oils.
Cheaper options are available from several high street retailers or online stores.
An Amazon Echo or Amazon Dot is a voice activated device that can be great for someone with autism. Whether they are used for listening to audiobooks, finding out new fun facts or for creating soothing white noise it can make a great present. Starting from just £20 it’s a great budget option too.
Pinch Me Dough
Dough, putty or even play slime can make a fantastically soothing sensory toy, that also helps to improve motor skills and creativity. Pinch Me Dough is a fantastic range available in all kinds of scents, textures and colours there is an option for everyone.
Personalised photobooks can be a great way to store memories, or even to use for planning future trips or days out.
If you are hosting someone with autism this year, why not create a photo book and gift it in advance. Take photos of rooms in your house, table settings, food you will be serving and other guests so that they feel familiar and comfortable with their surroundings before they arrive making it less stressful for them.
A fidget dice or fidget cube can be great for those with ADHD or on the autism sprectrum to help reduce stress and anxiety. Fidgeting is often a great distraction, allowing people to focus on what they are doing rather than what may be going on around them. Another great budget option, with prices on Amazon starting from just £5.99
Chewigem have a range of products that suit people with sensory productive disorder, in particular those have a need to chew. These products are fun, yet functional and safe and can also be discreet. From pendants to tactile toys they have a great range and also have a fantastic blog that offers practical tips and advice too.