Effective Communication with Sensory Sensitive Individuals

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Hello, I'm Anne Laure Jackson, and today I want to share with you some essential strategies for effective communication with individuals who are sensory sensitive or more technically accurate - over reactive. It’s crucial that we approach our interactions with respect, understanding, and support, especially when it comes to sensory processing challenges.


Recognising Sensory Hyper-Responsiveness


First off, let’s talk about recognising the signs of sensory hyper-responsiveness or otherwise known as over-reactivity. This can range from discomfort with specific sounds and lights to difficulties with physical contact. It's vital that we assess for, stay aware and respectful of these sensitivities to communicate effectively.


Depending on what we find after having assessed their sensory thumbprint® we will alter these to suit, but for now, do consider the following.


Communication Strategies


Use Clear and Simple Language: I’ve found it best to avoid sensory overload by sticking to straightforward, concise language.

Non-Verbal Cues: Paying attention to body language and facial expressions is crucial, as they can speak as loudly as words.

Visual Supports: Incorporating visual aids like pictures or written instructions can greatly supplement verbal communication.

Create a Comfortable Environment: Ensuring that our environment is sensory-healthy, with minimal distractions and comfortable lighting, is key.


Listening and Patience


Active Listening: Demonstrating empathy and understanding through active listening and thoughtful responses goes a long way.

Patience: It’s important to allow extra time for processing and responding, especially if sensory input is a challenge.


Adapting Communication Style

Flexibility: Being ready to adapt your communication style based on responses and needs is a skill that’s invaluable.

Check for Understanding: It’s good practice to regularly check in to ensure your message is understood, and you’re correctly understanding responses.

Collaborating with Specialists


For those looking for deeper insights into assessing over-reactive sensitivities, I’m here to help.  



Awareness, adaptability, assessment of and respect for unique sensory experiences are foundational to effectively communicating with sensory over-reactive individuals. By embracing these strategies, we can foster more inclusive and understanding interactions.


Schedule a Zoom Consultation


If you’re looking for more detailed advice, I’m offering a free 15-minute Zoom consultation. It’s a great opportunity for us to discuss how you can apply these communication strategies effectively. Click here to schedule your call.



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