Considering Home Therapy For Children With Autism

Even with a promising procedure and complete tools, there are still a lot of parents that hesitate to put their children with autism in specialized facilities with specialized therapists and professional doctors. Perhaps, you are also wondering if in-house treatment programs are possible. The answer for that is a definite yes.

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Doctors and therapists agree that home therapy programs enhance the learning and behavior of the young patients with autism because they live in a familiar and comfortable environment during the program (their home with their family around). Doctors deem this type of atmosphere safe and non-threatening for children with autism, thus, making way for the therapy’s effectiveness.

For youth without traumatic experiences or neurodiversity (autism, attention-deficit hyperactivity, or other neurodiverse conditions), independent emotional regulation becomes fairly stable around adolescence. — Melinda S. Malher-Moran, MA, LMHC, BC-DMT

How Does Home Therapy Work?

The most common form of autism in-home treatment is the Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) therapy. It can be done in special facilities for children with autism and even at home with the whole family of the patient. Intensive programs based on this type of home therapy can also be facilitated at home with a licensed therapist or can even be a DIY treatment by the parents and other members of the family. If the latter is chosen, parents can still meet with the therapist and an ABA analyst from time to time to monitor and discuss the patient’s progress.

ABA therapy is known as a scientific technique to understand behavior and teach children with autism the proper way of doing things through observation, reinforcement, and prompting. This therapy teaches young patients with autism desirable behavior and interaction, especially targeting to increase their social skills and verbal behavior. Moreover, this in-home treatment doesn’t require any expensive tools.

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One example of an activity employing the ABA approach is the color-matching of toys. You can teach your child about colors by using his/her toys then make him/her match the next colors without making the learning boring and dull.

Of course, there are some things that should take more weight than others, especially when strong evidence has shown its effectiveness. I am simply stating that it is admirable when disciplines come together to create a great treatment approach for children with Autism or for really any child. — Heather Gilmore, MSW, BCBA

What Are Some Home Activities That Use The Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) Approach?

A common type of therapeutic activities that employ the ABA approach is the Play Therapy. From the name itself, this type of home therapy involves interaction between the parent and the child in a fun and comfortable way. Play therapy can also be in a directive and non-directive way. Parents (or therapists) are more of an observer in non-directive while they are more of an authority figure in the directive approach.

The use of flashcards is also a usual home therapy technique to teach children with autism. Parents can practice their kids’ recognition and memorization skills by showing them some cards with printed pictures of emotions (for emotion-recognition skills) and pictures of everyday household things (have them copy your demonstration too). Now and then, parents should praise and reward their children for a good behavior exhibited and for every task successfully done.

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Home-based treatments and activities have shown to be effective not just for the young patient’s social and cognitive skills but also for aiding parental stress and depression about their child’s situation.

Early intervention education and training for families which includes counseling and classes that focus on teaching parents behavior modification. — Bridgette Montgomery, LCSW

Home therapy is deemed as the best technique to hone these children before they enter an inclusive classroom and other special educational institutions. Furthermore, this therapy approach continues to receive a lot of satisfaction from parents as they can see the progress and significant effects on the well-being of their children with autism.

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