Water(Aquatic,Hydro) Therapy by Sneha Narayan

Autism spectrum disorders manifest in a number of ways, from problems with behavior and communication to developmental and cognitive disabiliities.
Autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) are increasing in prevalence. Children with ASDs present with impairments in social interactions; communication; restricted, repetitive, and stereotyped patterns of behavior, interests, or activities; as well as motor delays. Hydrotherapy is used as a treatment for children with disabilities and motor delays.

For me also was struggling through all these\n in Dhruva 1.5 years back but meet a renowned Doctor (orthopedic MD) who has even treated Sachin Tendulkar..to discuss Dhruva’s Muscle tone problem..and he just advised 2 hrs WATER PLAY DAILY BY FAIL.

This therapy helped us a lot to develop bonding with him.

One common treatment for children with autism spectrum disorders is aquatic therapy or hydrotherapy and steam therapy.

In this therapy use water immersion to achieve therapeutic gains that may be too difficult for a child to attain through land-based physical therapies.
Hydrotherapy is a natural remedy for treating medical conditions using water. Hydrotherapy can come in the forms of steam, vapor, water, and ice and it has benefits for various ailments in adults. Did you know that Hydrotherapy can benefit children with ailments, too? It sure can! Hydrotherapy for children is more common than we think. What makes it better? Children love water, whether playing in a pool or even in the backyard with a garden hose.

For 2 months we have been following as advised by doctor and wonders happened his stability and balance has improved ..his sensory need got fulfilled and was more happy and calm..after water play.

Topics to be covered in today’s blog:

  • Autism and water therapy

  • Benefits of water therapy

  • Sensory Processing Benefits of Aquatic Therapy

  • Hydrostatic pressure

  • Vestibular Stimulation

  • Proprioceptive feedback

  • Physical Benefits of Aquatic Therapy

  • Social and Behavioral Benefits of Aquatic Therapy

  • Additional Information about Hydrotherapy for Children

  • kids hydrotherapy at home surrounding..

    Benefits of water therapy

Being submerged in water provides calming support, pressure, and buoyancy that helps kids on the autism spectrum develop their sensory processing skills, reach new physical milestones, and strengthen their social skills and self-regulation abilities.
It’s not necessary you require a swimming pool .you can even have a small plastic tub to carry water therapy.

Try taking the baby to beaches..it not only helps to bond child with parents but also improves social communication..

Interested in how hydrotherapy might be able to help a child in your life with autism? Keep reading to learn more.

Note: “Hydrotherapy” and “aquatic therapy” are used interchangeably in this blog post

A few ways aquatic therapy can help ease symptoms of ASD are:

  • Better Balance. Aquatic therapy helps strengthen muscles, which increases balance and develops better range of motion. It helps that water play is fun and individualized, even for kids on the spectrum.
  • Better Communication Skills. Being in the water doesn’t mean a lot of social interaction, but it can be a safe place to practice small interactions without the pressure to chat.
  • Help With Sensory Issues. Often, children with ASD struggle with sensory integration disorders. Water tends to have a calming effect, and some therapies include activities designed to help sensory issues.
  • Better Oral Motor Skills. Some kids with ASD struggle with certain motor skills, like sipping through a straw or blowing out candles on a cake. Because aquatic therapy includes activities like blowing bubbles in water or blowing a ball across the water, kids develop stronger oral motor skills.
  • Better Swimmers. Being in the water makes kids more comfortable when it’s time to learn to swim. Water is especially hazardous for children with ASD because many have difficulty communicating when they are in danger. Aquatic therapy gives autistic kids time to build a crucial skill.
  • Cognitive Learning

    Children improve range of motion, neurodevelopmental growth, and body awareness with hydrotherapy. Their attention span increases, along with impulse control, concentration and focus, along with the ability to follow directions.

  • Task Completion

Autistic children respond better with visual cues and tangible rewards than with verbal cues. These children who practice hydrotherapy also tend to be better visual learners.

  • Water Safety

During hydrotherapy, children have a better understanding of water safety, but still require a significant amount of supervision as they still lack verbal responses. kids become familiar with water, gain skills with swimming, and understand the safety hazards.

The swimming pool can be transformed into a sensory room with different treatment stations that have different treatment aims such as memory development, co-ordination development , proprioceptive and vestibular feedback. This is done using different props within the water. Each exercise and activity can include one or all of the senses such as visual, auditory, tactile etc as well as using memory, sequencing and other cognitive processes. Speech and language can be developed along side mathematics and the level can be graded according to the child’s ability. The water adds a new dimension to the senses, giving resistance where it is needed and helping with movement flow as required. It is a great way to incorporate strengthening exercises and promote general fitness for the children.

Sensory Processing Benefits of Aquatic Therapy

Most children with autism also experience a mild to severe sensory integration disorder, or the inability to effectively take in, organize, and respond to sensory input. In fact, sensory processing deficits are one of the main triggers behind the inappropriate, anti-social, or self-destructive behaviors that are often associated with autism spectrum disorder.

Occupational therapy seek to minimize these sensory issues through sensory modulations. Sensory therapies usually refers to activities, such as swinging, jumping, touching different textures, or trying new foods that stimulate the senses. It also refers to external supports, such as weighted blankets, pressure vests, and full-spectrum lightings, that help children with autism better cope with sensory deficits. It is necessary to help children with autism thrive.

Interestingly, aquatic therapy help with sensory modulation. In other words, aquatic therapy includes activities meant to help children with autism strengthen their sensory processing skills, while the water itself is a sensory modulation—and an ideally safe and supportive environment for trying new skills. Water, particularly warm water, provides children with autism with three kinds of sensory support:

Hydrostatic pressure

Children with autism are known to crave deep pressure. Water provides this through hydrostatic pressure, or the pressure that a liquid exerts when it’s at rest. Water exerts 30x more deep pressure stimulation on the body than air. More importantly, unlike pressure vests or weighted blankets, water completely surrounds and envelopes the child’s body, perfectly distributing an equal and consistent amount of pressure on all submerged parts of the body. The result is an especially calming environment that soothes children with autism, helps them organize other sensory inputs, and gives them more confidence to try new movements.

Vestibular stimulation

Some of the obsessive, repetitive behaviors that children with autism exhibit, such as rocking and twirling, are directly related to an underdeveloped vestibular system.

Children with autism usually engage in these activities because they are trying, by external measures, to develop a sense of balance. Unfortunately, these maladaptive modulations are also distracting and, too often, self-destructive. By contrast, moving around in water creates a controlled vestibular situation that is safe and more effective than other methods.

Proprioceptive feedback

Aquatic therapy for children with autism includes activities specifically designed to provide proprioceptive feedback. Proprioception, also known as your sixth sense, is your body’s ability to understand where it is in space—which is an ability that develops later in childhood, explaining why babies need to be held and why toddlers’ movements are erratic. For children with autism, this sense is usually underdeveloped, making them seem clumsy or strange in their movements. In water, the resistance children encounter when they move, the feel of water rushing past them, and the hydrostatic pressure when they are still all combine to give enhanced proprioceptive feedback and improve this sense.

After an aquatic therapy session,kids report better moods, better focusing abilities, and better sensory processing abilities. The enhanced sensory input that children with autism receive in water helps them develop body awareness, gain greater touch tolerance, and improve their ability to coordinate all of the different sensory inputs received from the environment and focus on the correct one.Those who don’t have swimming pool can use this tub easily available online.

Physical Benefits of Aquatic Therapy

In addition to all of the sensory processing benefits, aquatic therapy also helps children with autism develop physically. Of course, any type of exercise is beneficial, but moving in water works more muscles simultaneously than any other exercise! Water exercise not only strengthens all muscles, including the heart, it also improves coordination, range of motion, balance, and endurance—all skills that tend to be underdeveloped in children with autism.

More importantly, being in water makes the body more lighter and more buoyant, and reduces the fear of injury, making children with autism feel more confident trying new movements that they might never try on land. This confidence, in turn, gives them an increased sense of mastery and accomplishment, usually through the use of play-based, functional movements.

Finally, working in water can enhance core strength, reduce pain and stress on the joints and soft tissues, improve motor planning and fine motor skills, strengthen oral motor skills (such as blowing out candles or drinking through a straw), and increase breathing control.

Social and Behavioral Benefits of Aquatic Therapy

On top of all of the other benefits of aquatic therapy, being in the water is just plain fun. After a successful session, many occupational therapists report that children with autism are more talkative and social, better able to cooperate—and more interested in imaginative and group play.

The calming effects of being in water tend to last well past the initial session. Psychologically, hydrotherapy often results in better moods, better impulse control, improved self-esteem and body image, decreased anxiety, and a marked drop in problem behaviors.

There are secondary benefits to aquatic therapy, too. For kids, being in the water doesn’t feel like a chore or like a clinical doctor’s office — it’s fun.

It doesn’t matter how big or small a child is — the water accommodates all sizes. Some sensory issues make it difficult for kids on the spectrum to comfortably take part, but water helps. It eases anxiety and calms feelings of discomfort.

All kids have trouble with short attention spans, but this is particularly true of autistic children. Being in the water tends to help them stay focused.

Aquatic Therapy Can Improve Social Behaviors

More than anything else, many children with autism spectrum disorders struggle to socialize. Since aquatic therapies are inherently social in nature (they occur between a therapist and one or more patients), they can offer children with autism an effectively structured way to form social bonds and learn interpersonal skills that can be transferred to other areas of life.

In addition, aerobic exercise like swimming has been shown to reduce negative behaviors common in children with autism, such as rocking, spinning, head-nodding, hand flapping, object-tapping, and light gazing. These kinds of behaviors can be a hindrance to normal socialization, and their reduction may make social connections with peers and other individuals easier. Analyses of studies published in major journals corroborate these claims.

Hydrotherapy Can Help with Sensory Processing Disorders

Autism often coincides with sensory processing disorders, making children suffer from frequent “sensory overload.” The hydrostatic pressure in water has been show to help children with sensory processing disorders or vestibular issues by providing a gentle, soothing physical environment.

Additional Information about Hydrotherapy for Children

While hydrotherapy works for adults and children alike, certain measures are taken into consideration for children for a successful therapy session. Children require a lower water temperature for hydrotherapy to avoid scalding and burns. The safe water temp for hydrotherapy in children is 90 to 94 degrees Fahrenheit. Also, hydrotherapy times are different from adults due to size and age. Children are in the water for 10 minutes times their age. For example, a five year old will use hydrotherapy for 50 minutes for a successful session.

See Improved Outcomes With Aquatic Therapy

Behavioral therapy is much easier after time in the water, which helps calm a busy body and mind. Exercise itself is a form of therapy, and when done it water, it’s not work.

Because dietary changes are sometimes met with opposition, it’s easier to tackle these when children are hungry — and water exercise is great for increasing appetites.

Aquatic therapy can help with the side effects of certain drugs. The exercise helps your child process medications and will often work against effects like drowsiness or weight gain. Because the exercise involves water play, children are happy to join.

kids hydrotherapy at home surrounding..

There are three key factors in hydrotherapy, and they are heat, buoyancy, and massage. The heat of the water helps relax the child before therapy begins. The buoyancy of the water reduces body weight, allowing less pressure on the body during movements and exercises. The massaging feature is created by a mixture of water and air through water jets. The water jets help relax muscles, massage the body, and allow ease of sensory processing in children.

With all the benefits of hydrotherapy for autistic children, therapy is most easily done at home. get a normal tub that will hardly cost 2000 to 400 bucks and start at home itself. This is one style of a hot tub that is easy to install, eco-friendly, and budget-friendly, too.


as its rainy season pack u bags and go out in nature with kids give them as much exposure as u can do not give any excuse to yourself ..kids love water just go out in nature and let them too enjoy and calm themselves..Pune and around are full of water falls and lush green atmosphere take them out..you can take them to beaches..just get up and go..sharing some pics of our adventurous tours with Dhruva..try to keep them close with water..it work wonders…a family outing with our kids improves bonding and reduces the stress we go through our day to day life.

Helping your child manage and reduce their symptoms is the best bet for combating the challenges of ASD. Regardless of which therapy works best for your child, aquatic therapy can give your child something to look forward to while improving autism symptoms.

waterfalls all around

Water is stimulating and exciting and most children love the difference of doing their therapy activities in the water. Activities can be adapted to suit many children in a fun and stimulating way. The water can also be used as a calming tool with relaxing music, a warmer temperature and attention to lighting.

Occupational therapy is based on purposeful and meaningful activity in which the person concerned actively engages in their treatment. Purposeful and meaningful activity for children is play. Children learn through play and play is used in THERAPY. Water play, therefore, is becoming increasingly popular for sensory integration, developmental co-ordination disorder, attention deficits, hyper active children and many other condition…

on the beach

kids are precious treasures of future.All the kids have right to be happy and parents too.No child in this world is without a mission.Parents are exerting themselves to raise a child everyday and mommies your work is truly praise worthy.i offer them my utmost support.this 21st century must be an era in which all the parents and children can walk the great path to happiness..
Children are messengers from future we have no choice but entrust our world to them.I TRUST CHILDREN.I BELIEVE IN THERE ABILITY TO GROW AND DEVELOP.Every child possesses a unique and important mission.for this reason i treat all our children with respect and i give all to doing so.JUST TREAT THEM AS NORMAL KIDS CREATE ONLY HAPPY MEMORIES WITH THEM..


come on mommies get charged up and geared up and make the move..
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