Tag Archives: Early Intervention

Question?: Treatment For Autism Spectrum Disorder

Thomas asks…

How do you know if a child has mild autism ?

My friend has a 5 yr old son who can say a few words then cuts of into bable. She doesn’t talk “baby talk” to him. When she wants to get his attention he avoids eye contact by rolling his eyes in every direction. When we took him to the fair certain noise would bother him and he would cover his ears. The noise didn’t even have to be high pitched or very loud. When she asked the doctor about his speech, he simply said it was a speech impediment that once he starts school he will get help for it. I’m not sure how to approach her about it either.

admin answers:

DON’T WAIT UNTIL HE STARTS SCHOOL!

Early intervention is key in cases of Autism Spectrum Disorders and Nonverbal Learning Disorder, and delayed speech.

Please ask her to take the following steps immediately:

Find a pediatrician that specializes in children with developmental disabilities.

Contact the school system for a complete evaluation (this is free, and could have been before the child trained 3!).

The school system will choose a team of professionals to evaluate the child, including, but not limited to a speech therapist, an occupational therapist, a physical therapist, a school adjustment counselor, a school psychologist, a teacher and an expert in special education. His parents will be part of the team, and they may bring any experts they so choose to the team meetings.

The child’s new pediatrician will submit a recommendation for the services the child needs. The child may require an independent evaluation by additional specialists (pediatric neurologist, etc. To develop a treatment plan.

Make sure that the team adopts the recommendations of his pediatrician and specialists in their entirety; appeal the team’s decision, if necessary.

The team will develop an Individualized Education Plan (IEP) that specifies the services to be provided and the frequency of the provision, as well as the modifications that will be made to “regular” education to accommodate him.

His parents have the right to accept or reject the IEP, in whole or in part, and appeal same, in whole or in part. If they choose to appeal and another, independent evaluation is required, the school must pay for the evaluation.

The school system is required BY LAW to provide early intervention services beginning at age 3, so he will probably begin in a special program, immediately.

This is a very complex subject not easily dealt with in this forum, however the above is a start. DON’T WAIT!

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Question?: Autism Signs In Children

Ruth asks…

How do you tell someone to get their child evaluted?

This family has one 5 year old with PDD a 18 month old who can’t sit up and rocks back and forth while on the floor, Dad wants him evaluated, but also has a 3 year old who has deffinate signs of autism too. Dad thinks he’s a genious bacause he is so drilled. How can we get Dad to see the light?

admin answers:

Try putting it to him like this since , since the other two do and seem to have autism It is a precautionary thing to have the middle child evaluated too. Explain that there are various degrees of autism and that some people w/ as are brilliant. Advise him that it is more likely for his middle child to have autism because his siblings do than some one who’s siblings don’t. As a parent of autistic children he should understand how important early intervention is. If all else fails ask him this. If there were even the slightest chance that his child had a life threatening disease like cancer he would have the child tested wouldn’t he ? The eval is just a test If the child doesn’t have autism what will it hurt?

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Question?: Autism Signs And Symptoms

Sharon asks…

How do you know if a child has Autism?

My three year old nephew is a pretty regular kid. He can tlk but he doessnt understand things and usually ends up repeating you but he is very smart in many ways. My other relatives say it could be autism. How do you knnow for sure?

admin answers:

Most autistic children have a normal to high I.Q. The biggest symptom is the failure to acquire language. If your nephew is not using his language appropriately and just repeating what he hears, it could be something called echolalia, which could be a sign of autism. The best way to know is to take him to the pediatrician, and see if they recommend a screening. They will tell you where to go. You really need a professional to see him because autism can be a spectrum of symptoms and behaviors and some children have it more severely than others.

One thing is for sure, early intervention is the key. So, if you really suspect autism, don’t hesitate to have him diagnosed. The sooner he is diagnosed, the sooner he can receive help. Children who receive early intervention are usually more functional as they grow.

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Question?: Schizophrenia In Children

Lisa asks…

Can mental illnesses such as autism and schizophrenia be passed on to children?

My fiance and I both of family members who suffer from these ailments, my sister has autism, and her mother has schizophrenia. When we decide to have children of our own, is their a higher chance that they might suffer from these conditions? Also, is my soon to be wife at risk of becoming schizophrenic herself? She is 19 and currently in good mental health.

admin answers:

Unfortunately neither of those conditions are particularly well understood.

It is true that there are believed to be genetic influences in both of them, but there are also many other factors that researchers are looking at. Exactly how much genetic influence is not clear at all, and a genetic history certainly doesn’t mean that children will develop them.

On the positive side, there is no evidence whatsoever that autism is influenced by vaccinations – something which has become internet folklore and has been disproven by recent large-scale scientific studies. Also early diagnosis of autism is becoming better, and autistic children who get early intervention therapies are showing great improvements.

Schizophrenia normally doesn’t develop until adulthood. Its cause is pretty much a mystery but research is concentrating on brain development. It certainly seems to have a genetic component, but research suggests that its onset can be signficantly affected by environmental factors like psychological stress.

With one known case in your family of each (and on different sides), and yourselves being presumably healthy, it doesn’t sound like the genetic risk is very significant for any children you might have. Remember also that these two conditions, while both affecting the brain, are unrelated so the risk is not increased by having one of each in the family.

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Question?: Asperger Syndrome

Lisa asks…

How can I help a three year old with aspergers syndrome?

I am helping to raise my granddaughter who has asperger syndrome. I need help with behavioral modification techniques. She has severe meltdowns, withdraws into herself at times, doesn’t like to interact with others at times, appears to be confused when being talked to about her behavior and is very defiant. She doesn’t show much affection towards people, but seems to be showing some improvement in this area. Any suggestions would be much appreciated. Also, can a child with aspergers lead a normal life?

admin answers:

The fastest way for you to get the specific help you need for your specific granddaughters needs is to contact your public school and ask for an evaluation. Show them whatever medical documentation you have (although I seldom see 3 year olds medically diagnosed with aspergers – more typical to see PDD-NOS) The school will have an early intervention team look at her – in your home setting and see what she needs – they may provide things for you to do – they may suggest a specialized preschool program several days a week. That is however where you start.

All children will lead as ‘normal’ a life as they are able to. I can however tell you that Early Intervention by professionals in the schools is critical for that success.

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Question?: Autism Signs In Toddler Girls

Paul asks…

How good is eye contact supposed to be in a toddler?

I have a 19 month old little girl who is extremely smart. She isn’t speaking yet and we are getting early intervention for her language/cognitive skills. Her pediatrician, speech therapist, interventionist, and playgroup director have all told me she is not autistic (or seems to be) and really just needs a jump start to better her communication and speech. I always thought that she had good eye contact. I never thought that she had a problem looking at me. However, recently, I’ve noticed that it’s been harder to grasp her eye contact. Of course it’s still there but she seems so much more into things and busy. If she’s playing with something, she won’t even turn to me anymore unless I say something that sparks her attention. I’ve looked at other kids her age and they seem to look right into my eyes. Is this something common of children her age or is this something that I should bring up at intervention. I would like some opinions of those with other kids. Thanks!

admin answers:

I would definitely bring it up. Lack of eye contact can be an early sign of autism. I’m not saying that’s what it is but any information that you think is important should be brought up. When you talk to her, does she look at you? It’s normal for kids to be so engrossed in an activity that they hardly give you the time of day. When you do get her attention, does she look around you or is it brief eye contact? Again, I would bring it up. If it’s worriesome to you, it’s worth noting. Good luck to you and your daughter! 🙂

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Question?: Autism Signs In 3 Year Olds

Paul asks…

Question for parents with autistic children?

My 3year-old daughter has autism, and right now she is in DD Pre-K for 12 hours a week. She loves school, but I feel like I should be doing more for her (like speech therapy, occupational therapy, etc.).

So my question is…what kinds of activities are your autistic children involved in? Thanks so much!

admin answers:

When my daughter was that age, she attended early-intervention pre-K for about 9 hours a week, and had occupational and speech therapy for 1-2 hours per week. Other than that, we just played with her. She loved Barney & Friends and learned a lot from watching that. Plus, because she is such a visual learner, I would sit with her and draw pictures of letters, numbers, etc., and things they represented (A is for apple, draw the A, draw the apple, etc.). I tried to give her opportunities where she could excel, like with colors – she knew them very well and liked them, too, so I would draw rainbows and she would tell me what color to use, when. Or sometimes, for a special treat, we’d mix water with food coloring and then pour the colored water into other jars to make new colors (i.e., red and blue make purple, and so on).

I wish I could say that now (she is 15) my daughter no longer exhibits any signs of autism but that’s not true. She still struggles with language, still attends speech therapy for an hour a week, still has the occasional meltdown, etc. However, I have happy memories of spending that time with her when she was little, and feel fortunate that she is as affectionate with me as she is. I think in the long run, she has taught me more (about things like empathy, patience, and courage) than I ever taught her….

Hope this helps!

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Question?: Autism Symptoms In 7 Year Old

Susan asks…

Can you six month old babble and hold eye contact?

My son is six months old. He can hold eye contact with me but only for a few seconds. He then gets distracted by something else every time. I try to talk to him and look him in the eyes but he always looks away. Also, he can yell and make lots of noise ( I know he enjoys hearing his own voice), yet he has not yet made any sounds like ma, ba, goo, ga. Can your six month old make these sounds or do they mostly just yell and sing song? He responds to his name being called but only sometimes. Can you describe to me what your baby can do at six months. I know it is early to diagnose, but I am worried he could be autistic. Thanks

admin answers:

My son does the same thing. Actually he hardly ever responds to his name. If your son smiles and laughs, then most likely he is not autistic. Most austistic children do not even like to be touched. However if you have any doubt or just want to be reassured talk to your doctor about testing. Symptoms in many children improve with intervention or as the children age. Some children with autism can lead normal lives. Outlook is best with early intervention and therpy. Children with autism do have delays with speech but what your son is doing I believe doesn’t apply. My son loves to talk and is a very happy baby but he is easily distracted. He is almost 7 months and has not said ma or ba. Sometimes children don’t speak until closer to a year old, it just depends on the child. Good Luck and speak with your doctor 🙂

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Question?: Treatment For Autism In Toddlers

Michael asks…

how do you know your child has autism?

is there anything else the signs can lead to? also, what can I do for him to help him along or make his life easier in the meantime? he has doctors appointments lined up for developmental and communication issues, but they feel so far away (weeks). He’s turning 2 in a couple weeks.

admin answers:

The Ages and Stages Questionnaire is a general developmental checklist. Autistic kids would score low on Communication and Personal-Social, but usually do fine on the motor skills parts, and may do fine on the problem solving part as well. Make sure that you say you want them to email your results. You can also print out what you answered to each question so you can hand them to your doctor, as he’s going to want to know the answers to most of those (he might want to repeat some things himself though).

Http://asq.uoregon.edu/index.php?lang=en

Then, more autism-specific, there is the M-CHAT (Modified CHecklist for Autism in Toddlers). Again, write down the results and share with your doctor.

Http://www.firstsigns.org/downloads/m-chat.PDF
http://www.firstsigns.org/downloads/Downloads_archive/m-chat_scoring.PDF

Finally, aside from talking to your doctor, make an appointment with Early Intervention or whatever they are called in your state (every state has an agency like this, but they have different names). They will assess your child for free, and provide treatment for cheap or free as well if your kid needs it. The assessment appointment would probably be a few weeks from now, so you might not get any answers sooner than from your doctor, but odds are your doctor is going to tell you to get your son assessed by them anyway, and doctors don’t speed up the process, so might as well make that appointment yourself now. If the doc says your child is perfectly fine you can always cancel the appointment with Early Intervention (or not… Second opinions don’t hurt).

Depending on what developmental and communication issues he has, it could be autism or something else… I’m not even going to guess without seeing a list of symptoms.

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Question?: Autism Signs And Symptoms

Paul asks…

How do you kow if your baby has autism?

I know its a stupid question . But how would you know if your baby has autism!? I’m a first time mom! I worry about everything when it come to my baby.

admin answers:

Actually, some signs of autism are clear at earlier than 6 months of age. However, it is often easier to spot later – 12 months and on. Autism is VERY complex and has a variety of symptoms, none of which are the same for each person with autism. Your child will have to undergo a series of developmental tests to determine whether he/she is on the spectrum.
If you suspect a problem, please have your child evaluated ASAP. The key to helping children with any developmental difference reach their optimum potential is early intervention. Good luck.

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