Intervention and Treatment


Published : February 05 , 2023
Latest Update : April 10 , 2023
Abeer is the Owner and Director of AK Coaching in the UK. Abeer is Jordanian and has been living in London since... more


When you imagine a child’s bedroom, the mind brings up a bright room with lots of colours, energetic picture on the wall, playful mobiles, and organised toys. But this image doesn’t suit everyone. One in every 60 children under the age of 10-years in the United Kingdom is autistic.


For autistic children, decor isn’t so much about the aesthetics as it needs to be functional. An autistic child’s bedroom needs to be their safe cocoon. It must be calm, peaceful, and organised.


Here what you need to consider: -


  • Children with autism need familiar spaces to be able to cope with changes. Their room is a place they will sleep, play, and study. It’s easier for them to focus on these tasks when each activity is limited to a location.

  • An easy way to divide the space is to create dedicated zones for sleeping, playing, learning and enjoyment.

  • Ideally, the bedshould be far from the window and in an area where lighting can be controlled.

  • Play, study and enjoyment areas should be closer to the window where they can get natural sunlight.


  • Colours affect a child’s mood as well as how they function. Bright hues like reds, oranges and yellows may be over stimulate the mind of a child with autism. Warm, neutral shades and tones of blue, green, and purple are better suited to the bedroom colours scheme. These colours are comforting and soothing. You can also use shades of soft grey.

  • Avoid patterns like polka dots as this may distract the child. If your child tends to lick surfaces, make sure you choose non-toxic paints that are less harmful and easy to wash.

  • Avoid blank white walls as this can make your child lose perception of his/her space.


  • Lighting has a big impact on a child’s sensory system. Avoid white lights as they can distort colours and strobe at high frequencies. As these lights lose power, they may flash and can trigger headaches and seizures. Instead, always use yellow lights.

  • Natural light is great, but it should always be filtered. The room should be planned such that it can be completely darkened at night. Hence, always use blackout curtains or shades on the windows.

  • Use dimmer switches on all lights so that the intensity of light can be controlled.

  • The direction of the light should be considered. To minimise the light intensity, you could position the lights such that they are directed upwards.

  • Avoid hanging lights.


  • Children with autism are very sensitive to sounds. As a parent you need to choose the flooring of their room carefully.

  • Natural wood is a great option for flooring. It absorbs sounds and is soft and warm. On the other hand, laminate flooring is avoidable as it can make a lot of noise. Alternatively, carpet the floor. Choose solid colours and tiled carpeting that is easy to install and maintain.

  • Avoid carpets with checkerboard effect.

  • Avoid tiles as they can be cold for winter and dangerous if they slip down.


  • Scents can be confusing for children with autism. Ideally, scents should come only from natural sources such as plants, fresh flowers, and fresh fruits.

  • Consider opening the windows from time to time to get fresh air in.

  • If you still want to use an oil diffuser, choose scents carefully. Sharp scents like mint and citrus are stimulating and can be used when you want to energize your child. On the other hand, scents like lavender and eucalyptus help your child relax. Dilute the oils as strong scents can be overwhelming.


  • Safety is more important than anything else. Safety is even more important in the case of a child with autism.

  • Make sure all storage units can be locked.

  • Make sure all the doors and windows can be locked.

  • Soften hard corners and install covers over the wall sockets.

  • If child is a skilled climber. In such cases, you may need to create a designated climbing area with padded sections or a movable crash pad.

  • If your child can find a way to get out of any room, you may need to consider an interior child lock.

Sensory Area

Even after you choose the perfect colours and lighting scheme, your child may face sensory overload from time to time.

  • Set up a small sensory quiet area in your child’s room. This could be just a small teepee in the corner or a canopy over a pile of pillows.

  • Include soft pillows, a weighted blanket, noise-cancelling headphones, and your child’s preferred fidget toys.

  • This area can help your child calm down and encourages self-regulation.


  • Having a television or laptop in your child’s room is best avoided.

  • Screens are addictive and highly stimulating. They can also have a hypnotic effect on a child.

  • Remove anything that creates a loud noise or that has too many wires.

  • Some electronics can be soothing. For example, projecting images on the walls or ceiling can help calm your child.

  • White noise machines can also be very helpful. These machines can also induce relaxation and help your child sleep.

Visual Clutter

  • A minimal decor style is ideal for your child’s decor. This helps your child stay focused. Wall art should be limited and maybe one frame per wall.

  • Choose natural landscapes or abstract prints with spirals and soft curves. Avoid any art with sharp lines and angles.


Decorating a room for a child diagnosed with autism, space needs to be organised.

  • Having books and toys scattered around the room can be frustrating for the child.

  • Plan lots of different types of storage.

  • Under-bed storage drawers are ideal for things that need to be kept out of sight.

  • Toys and games can be stored in clear stackable drawers. These should be labelled with words, pictures, or symbols according to what your child understands best.

  • Breakables and toys which you don’t want your child to play with unattended should be stored in a locked closet.



  • Texture is a common stimulant. When you’re choosing bed linen, soft, cotton sheets with a high thread count are ideal. These sheets do not create lumps and can be washed at high temperatures. This ensures that they stay clean without any change in texture.

  • Covering sheets, weighted sheets are ideal and can make your child feel comforted.

  • In terms of colours, you could follow the same theory as used for wall colours.

Remember to Celebrate your Child Always!


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