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Sensory grounding: A coping technique for children with anxiety

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child smelling handsSensory grounding might be a new concept for some folks, but it's a great tool to use if your child is feeling overwhelmed. The key to calmness is to forget about your worries and to become present in the moment. Here are a few tips on how to successfully ground yourself by uses your 5 senses.


Sensory grounding is using your senses to regain control of your body when you are feeling anxious or overwhelmed.

When does it work?

Anytime! Especially when you are feeling an anxiety attack, overwhelmed, nervous, or not yourself.

How do you do it?

Focus on the following:

5 things you SEE

(what are the colors different objects? Or pick one color and find 5 things that color) child playing -spy

4 things you are TOUCHING

(what does the surface you are sitting on feel like? What is the temperature? What does your shirt vs your pants feel like?)

3 things you HEAR

(What sounds are in the room you are in? What sounds are outside the room you are in?)

2 Things you SMELL

(Is there a good scent or bad scent? What is lingering in the air?)

1 thing you TASTE

(Eat something really sweet or sour)

Rebecca Wallace Rebecca M Wallace, PsyD