Posts Tagged ‘children’

Helping Parents Address Challenging Behaviors During These Challenging Times

There is a clear consensus that children with disabilities are the most vulnerable to both short- and long-term effects of COVID-19 (United Nations, 2020). This is particularly true for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (here forward autism) for whom the sudden disruptions in educational and...

Physical Fitness Activities and Nutrition Support for Autism Families

It’s hard enough to find support and respite when you have a child with autism, but add a pandemic to the mix, and you’ve really got your hands full. While it’s easy to give in to your child’s requests for sugar and stimulating games (they’re adorable and you want them to be happy, after...

Assembling an Emergency Toolkit for Children with Disabilities

In the journey of parenthood, one of the most challenging things caregivers of children can encounter are the inevitable injuries and emergencies. Last year, I had to take my daughter, Annie – who has autism and intellectual and developmental disabilities – to the emergency room (ER). Going...

Considerations for Social Awareness as a Critical Domain in Autism Intervention

When I first meet parents whose young child was newly diagnosed with ASD, most suffer in saying the same thing: “It is very difficult to engage my child,” “I can’t get my child to pay attention to me.” And, if parents are able to “connect,” the connection is often fleeting. While...

Back to School Tips for Parents of Children with Special Needs

As families soak up the last few weeks of summer vacation, they may be starting to think about the new school year approaching. For parents of children with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities, it can take a significant amount of preparation to create a seamless transition. Families need...

Improving Communications with Children with Autism and Special Needs Using Augmentative and Alternative Communication Strategies

As a paediatrician, we are taught that the developmental progress of a three to four-year-old child should include well over 500 words and that a child should be able to describe things and situations in a meaningful way. This milestone is one that all parents strive for as it is an important part...

Language Intervention for School-Aged Children

Spoken language remains the most efficient means of communication. The ability to speak functionally with others consistently and robustly predicts positive life outcomes for individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD; Howlin et al., 2004). Not surprisingly, most interventions have focused on...

Reducing Disparities in Early Identification of ASD

Early identification of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) expedites access to appropriate intervention and leads to improved functional outcomes (Dawson et al., 2010). Yet, despite concerns of possible ASD often noted by 18 months, the median age of diagnosis in the United States continues to hover...

Helping Children with Autism Fall Asleep and Stay Asleep Without Medication

Sleep is an essential restorative process for every child’s body and brain. Sleep has been shown to promote growth of one’s muscles, bones, and skin, help protect the heart, combat germs, sickness, and injuries, and impact one’s weight. Further, research has shown that sleep helps individuals...

Is Play Therapy an Evidenced-Based Intervention for Children with Autism?

As a board-certified behavior analyst (BCBA), I work with families that have a child diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder (ASD), and periodically see an increased interest in specific interventions. Multiple families start asking me whether a specific intervention is as effective as they are...