Autism has been one of the most difficult new issues in healthcare recently. The reason for this is that it is a major challenge for parents to understand the disease and find ways to make their children’s lives have the highest quality possible. Another factor making Autism devastating for parents is that there is no cure for the disease, only ways to potentially reduce the systems. If your son or daughter has Autism, it is important to know that there are ways to make the disease more manageable and increase the quality of life for your family. In fact, there are many therapies that have been quite helpful to children with Autism. In order to learn more about the top eight Autism therapies for children, read the information below:
The Top 8 Autism Therapies for Children
It is essential to learn more about Autism therapies in order to have the best quality of life for your child possible. Here are the top eight Autism therapies that can make a positive difference in your child’s quality of life:
1. Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA)
ABA is one of the most practiced therapies for Autism. It has been used on patients for more than 50 years. What the therapy entails is a therapist breaking down skills into component parts and through repetition and reinforcement, a child with Autism can learn them. Some examples of skills that can be taught with ABA are social living skills, self-care, communication, and play. ABA is proven to reduce problematic therapies. ABA is the ideal fit for a child who has more severe symptoms of Autism. Typically, in cases such as these, it is recommended to have 40 hours of therapy per week. Once the therapy begins to work, hours can be reduced; however, it is recommended to keep ABA ongoing to support the child into having the best possible results.
2. Social Skills Groups
Parents tend to isolate children with Autism, which is not always a great idea. Children can learn from peers. It is wise to integrate children with Autism because, at times, they can learn through their peers from modeling. The key to social skills groups being successful is for there to be strict rules and focuses for the children to work on. By using social skills groups, incredible improvements can be seen when it comes to day-to-day Autism symptoms.
3. Relationship Development Intervention (RDI)
RDI is a family-centered approach to treat Autism by focusing on establishing meaningful relationships. The way that RDI works is that emotional and social objectives are developed. RDI consults work with parents to show them how to elicit these results from their Autistic children. Empathy is one of the primary goals of RDI along with building eye contact and engaging in back-and-forth communication.
4. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
CBT has been in place since the 1960s and is for children that do not have severe symptoms of Autism. CBT aims to identify the triggers of particular behaviors so that the child can gain awareness of these behaviors themselves. Some of the primary Autism symptoms CBT helps with are: being anxious and overly fearful.
5. Animal-Assisted Interventions
Animals have been evaluated as potential therapies for many medical conditions. That said, there is a particular connection between horseback riding and children with Autism. While the idea of horseback riding may be terrifying to parents, if you spend the time to take your child to riding lessons, it will provide them an incredible benefit. It can allow them relaxation and to potentially become a lifelong hobby they love that can help with their Autism diagnosis. So long as you are there regularly supervising your child with the trainer, it will be a wonderful addition to your child’s Autism therapy and get them outside of a therapist’s office to something enjoyable.
6. Floortime and Pivotal Response Training
Floortime and Pivotal Response Training is a therapy that is led by the child. Toys should be prepared that are intellectual in nature for the child to lead the play session. Due to Autistic children’s high level of intelligence, having computer-related programming or advanced Math/Science toys is a great way to play on the child’s strengths and engage with them. Let them teach you something and it will help the child connect to objects and relieve their frustration.
7. Sensory-Based Therapies
One burden for Autistic children is that they are constantly on sensory overload. A beneficial skill for them to acquire is to learn how to balance their many sense inundating them all at once. There has been a great deal of success with sensory therapies that occur while the child is playing. Take each sense: hearing, seeing, touching, tasting, and smelling and find ways for the child to isolate these sensations through play. They will learn how to focus on one at a time, which will reduce their anxiety in the long term.
8. Early Start Denver Model Therapy
The Early Start Denver Model Therapy is newer but is said to be effective thus far. This is where a child forms a bond with a therapist where they lead playtime, balanced with the therapist leading playtime. The child will tap on the floor, the therapist will tap on the floor. Then the therapist will initiate another action. The idea here is for the child to learn to respond in social interactions, but also initiate them as well.
Autism is a great struggle for families. That said, there are many beneficial therapies available for parents to try to increase their child’s overall quality of life. For children with less severe symptoms, therapies can have a profound effect on their success in the long term. For more severe symptoms, therapies can reduce the child’s severe Autism to minor through consistency and dedication. Be sure to invest time into helping your child with therapies given that they will only learn more about Autism in the years to come, which can improve your child’s symptoms substantially in the future.
About The Author:
Stacey Smith is a freelance health writer. She is passionate to write about women’s health, dental health, diabetes, endocrinology and nutrition and provide in-depth features on the latest in health news for medical clinics and health magazines.