Hello! Thanks for visiting my website 🙂
My name is Abbi and I have over 10 years experience working with individuals of all ages with sensory needs, particularly with individuals with an Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD), Learning Disabilities and Challenging Behaviours.
I have a first class degree in Psychology from Brunel University where I studied Autistic Spectrum Disorders and carried out a research study into synaesthesia in autism.
Things changed drastically for me in 2014.
I was very unlucky. I had a couple of accidents a month apart and as a result have been left with a cognitive disorder, the symptoms of which mean it’s very difficult for me to find a job I can do.
Some of my symptoms include sensory difficulties, such as light and sound sensitivity, filtering sensory information, sensory overload and problems with information processing.
All of this has given me a deeper insight into what the sensory experiences of those with an ASD might be like and given me greater understanding.
I’ve worked with children, teens and adults all across the spectrum, from ages 3 years old through to adults in their 70’s.
My goal was always to become a clinical psychologist working in Learning Disabilities and I worked towards that goal for ten years.
After my accident, I spent months and months trying to find a job role which would work with my sensory needs and my processing difficulties but I really struggled.
Through supporting a friend through her child’s diagnosis with an ASD, I became aware of the challenges of finding the right sensory object that fits each individual’s needs and is appealing, comfortable and affordable.
I didn’t feel that those selling sensory items really understood what it was like to have sensory needs and to have aversions, such as to textures, colours, shapes.
I’ve worked with hundreds of people with sensory needs and every single person has been SO different and often sensory needs weren’t well met.
As someone who struggles with sensory issues, I understand the need for something to be just right in order to meet a sensory need. What use is a sensory item that causes discomfort through the feel, the weight or the way it looks?
Through looking at chewy jewellery with my friend, I realised options were few, costs were high and there was no such thing as customisation. I began to have ideas about how I could provide chewy items which were fun, customisable and affordable for families and over several months of research and hard work, I developed Sensory Oojamabobs!
I wanted to be able to find a solution that meets each person’s needs, without the usual accompanying feeling of being ‘difficult’ (like having to ask that no-one brings presents or balloons to the party because your son hates both surprises and loud noises).
I’ve always been passionate about improving lives and although I can no longer work directly in this field, it’s been so exciting to be able to provide better sensory support for people, from someone who has both sensory needs and understands the challenges involved in supporting those with sensory needs.