When a child is diagnosed with autism, it can leave parents feeling overwhelmed. They initially need to learn what this means for their own child. After this, they must share the news with family and friends. At the same time, many will begin to advocate for their child’s needs. For many parents, this is a confusing time that can make them feel overwhelmed. Depending on the age of their child, they may not know where to go for assistance.

For children who are past Early Intervention age, parents will often look to their school district for guidance. Each state and individual county within them may have different protocols to follow. It is important for those within the schools to be familiar with protocol in order to assist families in this process. The first step will be to do any additional testing that may be required. Has a thorough speech evaluation been done? Does the child qualify for occupational or physical therapy? Some kids will benefit from those types of therapies to assist with low muscle tone, balance concerns, and fine and gross motor skills. Each autistic child is different, and it’s important to determine what is best for their needs. Social skill development is another key area that kids on the autism spectrum will benefit from.

One problem facing some families is the inability to qualify for a specific type of intensive and expensive behavioral therapy. Applied behavioral analysis (ABA) may not be covered by Medicaid, even if a child’s neurologist recommends it. Parents may assume that it that they are able to receive this under their benefits, but some states like Texas are refusing it. If individual insurance covers it, the cost to the family is prohibitive. School districts need to think ahead about the students that are coming into their buildings for learning. It may be beneficial to them to start ABA or other programs for children with autism. Research shows that the cost of the intensive therapy pays for itself later on when the children are in school full time.

What is ABA Therapy for Austim?

ABA, or applied behavior analysis, is a type of therapy that focuses on the science of learning and behavior. It focuses on how behavior work, how behavior is affected by various environments, and how learning takes place. It’s unclear as to when ABA therapy was first established however in the 1980s, a researcher from UCLA published his studies on the therapy. This published study provided an in-depth look at one-on-one interaction with children to promote appropriate behavior. This went on to inspire further studies on the positive outcomes of ABA therapy, specifically in relation to children with autism. ABA therapy should be made available to those who require it in a school setting in correlation with the IDEA act.

Is ABA Therapy Effective for Autism?

ABA therapy is one of the most widely accepted therapy options for children with autism. It has been shown to be most effective when therapy is started from a young age. This option is one that requires extensive one-on-one therapy and is encouraged to be applied in a home setting as well. Studies have shown that long-term therapy has resulted in positive outcomes such as improved adaptive behaviors, IQ, and communication skills. Every child is unique so the long-lasting effects of ABA Therapy certainly vary. Each child should have a unique plan that meets their individual needs and progress should be measured accordingly. The ultimate goal of ABA Therapy to assist students to reach their goals to enable them to function in their natural settings. This process is based on individual needs and should certainly not be confined to a generalized timeline.

ABA Therapy for Autism – Training for Parents

It’s important for parents not only to be included in the plans and discussions around their children’s progress but it’s also important to equip them with the resources they need. Consistency is key when it comes to ABA Therapy which includes an ongoing focus in the child’s household as well. By providing parents with the resources and tools they need, you are equipping them with the ability to provide continued support for their child. Providing resources such as autismspeaks.org is a great place to start when directing parents where to turn towards for information. It’s also essential to set recurring meetings with parents so you can communicate various techniques to implement in a home setting to continue progress.

In-School ABA Therapy

Special education teachers and therapists need to create a committee within school districts to map out plans. What will be best for the needs of the incoming students to make them most successful in the future? Think about how it will help them in their schooling down the road. Go over what may be covered through a child’s Medicaid or insurance plan and what community resources may be available to assist with these costs. As always, it’s crucial to stay on top of autism research to see what therapies may fit within your schools and the needs of the kids within them.

Public schools are to provide necessary accommodations to students who require them, in accordance with the IDEA act. While more children are being diagnosed with autism, there is certainly a greater need for specialists such as ABA providers. However, there does appear to be a shortage of these professionals placing a greater need for them in schools. These professionals play a substantial role in students’ progress by ensuring they are given the opportunity to succeed from both an academic and social perspective. That is why it is so crucial to ensure these professionals are readily provided in schools so that students are given the resources they require to succeed.

The ProCare Therapy team is committed to helping you to find the perfect placement so that you can make a difference in the lives of your students. Start your search for ABA therapy jobs through the button below!

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