Ask Jigsaw: ASD and anxiety | Advice for Young People | Jigsaw

Ask Jigsaw: Autism Spectrum Disorder and anxiety

Ask Jigsaw: Autism Spectrum Disorder and anxiety

Wednesday, 22 July 2020

Hi I sufferer from autism spectrum disorder sensory processing disorder and anxiety and appsenst seizures how can you help me with my anxiety

-Hozier cork 2019

Hi Hozier cork 2019 ,

Thanks for your message. It sounds like you are having a tough time at the moment. Anxiety is very common when someone has sensory issues such as those related to autistic spectrum disorder (ASD) and sensory processing disorder (SPD). Some people feel especially anxious if they find themselves in new or unexpected situations or in places where there is too much sensory information, for example, big crowds.  Sometimes with ASD and SPD, it can be extra hard to get used to new things.

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Maeve
Jigsaw Clinician
We can’t control everything that happens, but planning as best we can, and knowing that we came through it before can help us to feel safer and more confident in our ability to cope.

I’m wondering if there is anything that helps to soothe you at the moment when you feel anxious? This might be breathing gently into your belly, listening to your favourite music, getting out for a walk or doing some other type of exercise. Some people like using things like weighted blankets that can help calm the body down. Or it might be about finding a quiet place, away from noise and other people, and ‘turning down the volume’ of the outside world. It might be helpful to talk to trusted people in your life about the kinds of things that make you anxious and work together to make your surroundings and daily activities feel more comfortable. If you haven’t already, you could also consider looking at the resources to learn a bit more.

Maeve
Jigsaw Clinician
If you haven’t talked to your doctor about these, it might be helpful to make sure that they are in control as much as possible.

In addition, you describe experiencing seizures, which might also be making you feel more anxious – as seizures can be quite scary, and often feel out of control. If you haven’t talked to your doctor about these, it might be helpful to make sure that they are in control as much as possible. And then it’s about planning well and talking to those around you so that if you know you have a seizure coming on, you can have a plan in place to help you to feel safer. Of course, we can’t control everything that happens to us, but sometimes planning as best we can, and knowing that we came through it before can help us to feel safer and more confident in our ability to cope in the future.

Take care,

Maeve, Jigsaw Clinician

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