What is a Multi-Sensory Environment or Snoezelen® Room?
It is a dedicated room that attempts to block out noise, control space, temperature, and lighting. It is an artificially created venue that brings together multi-sensory equipment in one place to stimulate the senses. This venue promotes pleasure and / or feelings of well-being. It can be utilized as part of learning, treatment, recreation and/or the relaxation experience. It is Controlled Sensory Input (CSI), especially designed to promote choice, interaction, and relationships through planned stimulation of the senses. It relieves stress, anxiety and pain. MSEs have been shown to help with autism, brain injury, challenging behaviors, dementia, developmental disabilities, mental illness, palliative care, pre and post surgery, PTSD, special education and of course wellness. It aims to maximize a person’s potential to focus and then to act on this change through an adaptive response to their environment. An adaptive response is defined as the individual initiating and reacting in a meaningful, productive way to situations, things and people in their environment. An adaptive response is a dynamic and ever changing process. Simply put Multi-Sensory Environments help change behavior, increase focus and attention and add to the feelings of positive self-esteem and well-being. (Written by: Linda Messbauer, MA, OTR/L)