Chew On This: The Top 10 Chew Products and Oral Motor Therapy Tools for Sensory Seekers

Exploring the Reasons Behind Chewing

As humans, the act of putting objects in our mouths is an innate part of our oral development, especially during infancy and early childhood. It’s a stage of exploration and discovery, as babies and toddlers use their mouths to learn about the world around them. However, for some individuals, this behavior doesn’t simply dissipate with age, and the need to chew continues into adolescence and even adulthood.

In this blog post, we delve into the intriguing world of chewing, seeking to understand why some people have an ongoing need to chew non-food items throughout their lives.

1. Stress and Anxiety: A Natural Outlet

One significant reason why some individuals find solace in chewing lies in its potential to alleviate stress and anxiety. Chewing can act as a natural outlet for pent-up emotions, providing a comforting and familiar action to help calm nerves and soothe uneasy feelings.

2. Sensory Need and Stimming: Finding Balance through Chewing

For many individuals with sensory processing differences, chewing serves as a form of stimming – self-stimulatory behavior that helps regulate sensory input. Chewing on specific textures can provide the sensory feedback they crave, promoting a sense of balance and grounding in their daily lives.

3. Body Awareness and Proprioception: Connecting with the Self

Chewing also plays a role in enhancing body awareness and proprioception – our ability to perceive the position and movement of our bodies. By engaging the jaw and facial muscles through chewing, individuals can strengthen their proprioceptive awareness, leading to improved coordination and motor skills.

4. Concentration: Focusing the Mind

Interestingly, chewing has been found to enhance concentration and focus for some individuals. It is believed that the rhythmic action of chewing can stimulate the brain, promoting alertness and attentiveness, making it a helpful tool for tasks that require sustained attention.

5. Teething, Boredom, or Habit: Everyday Triggers

While the reasons mentioned above delve into the deeper aspects of why some people need to chew, there are also everyday triggers that lead to this behavior. Teething, boredom, and habit are common factors that can prompt individuals to seek comfort and relief through chewing.

What are the Benefits of Using Chewy Products?

  • Can be used as an oral fidget for anyone seeking to chew
  • Chewy Products are a safe alternative to chewing on fingers, pencils, clothing and unsafe toys
  • Can help calm, focus and assist with self regulation
  • Used as an outlet to manage stress and anxiety
  • Can be incorporated into one’s sensory diet
  • Help decrease oral defensiveness
Benefits of Chewy Products

We’ve Got CHEW Covered with our Top Ten CHEWY Products

1. BRICK STICK – Part of our “Chewellery” range. Large bumps on one side, smaller on the other for a varied sensory experience. Great for back molar chewing too. Available in a smooth version (no bumps).

2. GRABBER TEXTURED – P-Shape handheld grabber with extra bumps and textures for a variety of sensory input. Available in all different textures and 2 different sizes.

3. Z-GRABBER – A vibrating oral motor chew tool with a built in handle for easy grip.

4. KRYPTO-BITE PENCIL TOPPER – Add these to your pencil or pen as a discreet way of chewing at school or work.

5. FLOWER WAND – One long extension on one end for back molar chewing and a flower shape on other end for front teeth chewing.

6. BRICK BRACELET – Easy to put on and take off. A great option for those seeking to chew or bite their wrists/arms or sleeves. Available in 2 sizes, both smooth and textured options.

7. FLAT TEXTURED SPOONS – These spoons have a very thin profile, perfect for those with limited lip control. Textured on one side and smooth on the other.

8. SIDEKICK CHEWY – A chewable figurine and the largest chewy tool in our range. Great for intense chewers because of the larger size.

9. CHEW PICKS – Chewable toothpicks. Smooth and slim in size. These are suitable for teenagers and adults with mild chewing needs.

10. BITE TUBE HOLLOW – Hollow all the way through and great for those chewers who want more “collapsible” feedback rather than solid feedback as they bite.

In conclusion, the need to chew can come about for a multitude of reasons, encompassing emotional, sensory, and developmental aspects. By understanding the underlying causes, we can embrace chewing not as an oddity, but as a natural and adaptive response that can provide both comfort and support throughout our lives. So, whether you or someone you know benefits from chewing, remember that it’s a unique part of their journey, and we have the resources available to make the experience enjoyable. Contact Autism Advisory And Support Service Sensory Resource Store for all your CHEWY needs.

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