A couple of weeks ago I went to Naidex which is the yearly disability exhibition. There is always so much to see and do for anyone with any interest in the innovations for the future of independent living.
I go because I like to look at new wheelchairs and accessible cars, but there is also a lot of new technology and information on holidays and disability sports. It can really be an eye opener.
One of the stands we spent a lot of time on was Touchpoints. I’m not always looking for things for myself, I also have autistic children and Star has physical disabilities too. The Touchpoints attracted me because they claimed to be of benefit to those with Autism.
I held two of the little devices while the lady on the stand talked to me about them. I took some information to look up when I got home, along with a purchase code as I was already thinking about buying some. While there I also filled in a competition form.
I received an e-mail shortly after the exhibition to say that I’d won the competition for a box of Touchpoints basic. This was the day after we’d been to the school to talk about the Little Man. He is now on the school’s Special Educational Needs and Disabilities register, and we know he is autistic although we don’t have it in writing yet.
The Little Man was fascinated with the Touchpoints and was keen to give them a try at school. We talked to the teacher who allowed him to wear the Touchpoints on his wrists.
After just a few days of wearing them he is already much happier at school and getting on with his work. I’ll explain more later.
What Are Touchpoints and What Do They Do?
In the box you get 2 touch points, a duel charger wire(so you can charge them both at the same time) and carrying pouch, a set of wristbands and a sticker sheet. These are the Touchpoint Basics, there are other options to choose from.
To use the Touchpoints you press the button on one to turn it on and then choose between the three settings: blue for sleep, yellow for calm or purple for anger. Then if you turn on the other Touchpoint and face them together the second device should change to match the same colour as the first and begin vibrating in an alternating pattern. Then you keep the Touchpoints on either side of the body. You can use the straps, or put them in your pockets or socks. Anywhere you feel comfortable putting them.
Touchpoints work through Bi-Lateral Alternating Stimulation Tactile (BLAST) technology. This means, in simple terms, that alternating messages are sent to the brain to interrupt it’s current state and keep it more relaxed. I’m trying to keep it non science(y) here, but if you want to understand more it’s explained in detail on the website. Or you can see a scientific study here that shows that it really does have an effect on emotional and physical pain.
The noise made by the Touchpoints was one of the first things I noticed. It was noisy in the exhibition so this wasn’t something I’d noticed until I turned them on at home. However, when put in my pockets of my trousers the noise was considerably less noticeable. I guess if you put them in your socks, or down your bra, then you would notice it even less.
The Little Man wanted to wear them on the wristbands provided. I was worried that they would be too noisy for school, but he pulls down his sleeves over them and no-one notices.
The Little Man is the one who’s had the most use out of them but I did get to use them myself. I’d become upset over an incident which totally stressed me out almost to point of tears. I was in a right ‘flap’ not knowing what to do. The Touchpoints were nearby as they’d not long arrived and I’d been looking at them. So I tried them out. I put them on ‘angry’ as I really was that stressed out, then I popped them in my pockets. Within minutes I felt much calmer and I was able to make two phone calls which helped to sort out my problem. I can honestly say that the Touchpoints really helped to calm me down, and in just a few minutes. I’d have probably been stressing for a lot longer without them.
As I said before, the Little Man has been having problems at school. Nearly every day we were getting notes in his book about him not concentrating, disrupting the class and generally being silly. Then the teacher told us that he annoys the other kids so much that he had no friends and would often spend his break time alone, or annoying others. This really upset me as I know at home he is a sensitive well behaved little boy. He was like Jekyll and Hyde!
With the Autism diagnosis upon us I realised that maybe he was suffering from over stimulation at school which is why he was acting up. I hoped that the Touchpoints would help with that.
So now he wears the Touchpoints to school each day. He found out by reading the website how they work. He chooses what setting to have them on and uses them when he needs too. They have helped him a lot. We have had reports back that he is getting on with his work more and not annoying the other children as much. He has not disrupted the classroom and yesterday he came home from school and told me he had made some new friends!!
Touchpoints have not asked me to write this review although they did ask for some feedback on their Facebook page. I am honestly really thrilled with the Touchpoints. If I can get them off the Little Man for five minutes I might even have another try with them myself. Or, maybe I will buy myself a pair too.
Touchpoints have so many uses as well as stress and Autism. They can help you get to sleep, study, tourettes, negativity, Parkinsons, Social issues, fear of the dark, test anxiety, phobias, aggression and many more. You can find an encyclopedia of uses on Facebook.
When I gave Touchpoints my feedback they told me I could share a discount code with anyone who may be interested in trying Touchpoints for themselves. Here is a copy of the information they sent to me with relevant links and information.
There are two types of TouchPoints available:-
The Basics are manually controlled devices with 3 settings Sleep, Calm and Anger.
The Originals are app controlled devices which come with the 3 settings mentioned for the Basics but additionally with Focus, Performance and Craving. So you should consider what you need the devices for and whether you want to use your phone to control them.
Find out more on the link below:
Once you have decided which version is for you please visit https://www.touchpointeurope.com/pages/shop-touchpoints and use code AUTISM15 at the checkout.
This should give you 15% off.
Any other queries drop us an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or call us on 01531 820511, this line is manned between 9am and 3pm on weekdays.
The Code is currently still working, but if you have any issues it might be worth giving them a call.
If you do try them I’d love to know how you get on.
If you have a child with speech issues you may find this post from Downs Side Up interesting, Top Salt tools for Terrific Talking