Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Color & Autism

Seeing Color Through Autistic Children’s Eyes
With Autism now affecting 1 in 110 children and 1 in 70 boys, it’s imper
ative that architects, interior designers and color
professionals be aware of the specific design requirements, for this growing population. Special consideration needs to be given when selecting colors and finishes, particularly for public spaces where children frequent.

Autistic children frequently have difficulties with sensory integration, which are the senses that are experienced through sight, touch, sound, taste and smell.

They rely on their visual senses to tell them what is happening since they often difficulty decoding verbal cues. Here’s another important fact that we need to keep in mind, when selecting color for children’s spaces. Researchers have found that autistic children’s rods and cones (components of the eye) have changed due to chemical imbalances or neural deficiencies. Colors appear more vibrant to autistic children. Of the autistic children tested, 85% saw colors with greater intensity than non-autistic children. The color red for example, looks fluorescent and vibrates with intensity.

Environments with too much stimulus on walls, floors and counter surfaces can wreak havoc in neurologically delayed individual’s minds. Declutter! Disorganized, cluttered environments make it difficult for everyone to concentrate, especially for autistic children. For this reason it’s essential that their space be simplified.

  • Use non-defined patterns in fabrics, flooring and wall covering.
  • Color schemes should minimal hues; muted colors are preferred.
  • Put books, toys and other distractions out of sight; place them behind cabinet doors.
  • Draperies and shutters are distracting; use simple, inside mount blinds
  • Although color preferences vary from individuals, studies have shown that many autistic children favor pale pink.
  • Reduce the use of primary colors to light weight toys, which can be removed from the space if needed.
COLOR TURNERS helps businesses and manufacturers make the best decisions where color choices are critical. We provide accurate and tangible ways to significantly reduce your business and manufacturing risks and turn your knowledge into increased sales and customer satisfaction.