Autism is considered a neuro developmental disorder, meaning it causes both cognitive and developmental impairments. The exact cause of autism isn’t known. Autism spectrum disorders have a diverse group of symptoms that impact how your child interacts with their environment and with other people. Some autism symptoms may appear as obsessive behaviors or routines, which can cause severe emotional distress if they aren’t followed. Children with autism typically experience significant delays in developing language skills. Autism makes it difficult to understand gestures and facial expressions, which can make it hard for children with autism to play with and get along with peers. Therapy is the main form of treatment for autism. Knowing how to find autism treatment is the best way you can support your child, as early interventions lead to more favorable treatment outcomes. Limiting the progression and severity of symptoms helps prepare your child for school and cultivate important life skills.
There are many treatments for autism. There are plenty of options available, and many therapies that can work well for autistic kids. Speech therapists address a range of issues for autistic children. They help people who begin speaking later than average to acquire spoken words. In addition, they also help higher functioning children to ask and answer questions, use appropriate prosody and body language, and, for more advanced learners, recognize jokes, sarcasm, teasing, and friendly “joshing.” Speech Therapy helps children with speaking, as well as communicating and interacting with others. It can involve non-verbal skills, like making eye contact, taking turns in a conversation, and using and understanding gestures. It might also teach kids to express themselves using picture symbols, sign language, or computers. Many speech therapy focus on teaching children how to understand verbal and non-verbal cues, which can include helping your child how to practice typical social norms and engage in conversations with peers.
Occupational therapists help children with a variety of developmental challenges. Many have a wide range of skills and training that allow them to work on sensory challenges, interactive play skills, cooperative interaction, and much more. These activities help children with autism get better at everyday tasks, like learning to button a shirt or hold a fork properly. But it can involve anything related to school, work or play. The focus depends on the child’s needs and goals.
Sensory integration therapy is essentially a form of occupational therapy, and it is generally offered by specially trained occupational therapists. It involves specific sensory activities to help a child appropriately respond to light, sound, touch, smells, and other input. Interventions may include swinging, brushing, playing in a ball pit, and many other sensory-related activities.
Behavioral Therapy is usually considered to be the “gold standard” of autism-specific treatment. Many districts offer ABA classrooms or provide ABA therapists as part of a special needs school program. Behavioral therapist can teach skills and behaviors that are critically important to success in a typical school or work environment. Behavioral intervention strategies have focused on social communication skill development—particularly at young ages when the child would naturally be gaining these skills—and reduction of restricted interests and repetitive and challenging behaviors. For some children, occupational and speech therapy may be helpful, as could social skills training and medication in older children. The best treatment or intervention can vary depending on an individual’s age, strengths, challenges, and differences.
Social skills training (Social Skill Training) are a way for people, especially children, to develop social skills. For some people with autism, interacting with others is very difficult, which can lead to many challenges over time.