In order to treat autism, appropriate early intervention is a must. Once the diagnosis has been made, the parents, physicians, and specialists should discuss what is best for the child. In most cases, parents are encouraged to take care of the child at home.
Special education classes are available for autistic children or children with autism. Structured, behaviorally-based programs, geared to the patient’s developmental level have shown some promise.
Most behavioral treatment programs include:
- clear instructions to the child
- prompting to perform specific behaviors
- immediate praise and rewards for performing those behaviors
- a gradual increase in the complexity of reinforced behaviors
- definite distinctions of when and when not to perform the learned behaviors
Parents should be educated in behavioral techniques so they can participate in all aspects of the child’s care and autism treatment. The more specialized instruction and behavior therapy the child receives, the more likely it is that the condition will improve.
Medication can be recommended to treat specific symptoms such as seizures, hyperactivity, extreme mood changes, or self-injurious behaviors.
The autistic child requires much of the parents’ attention, often affecting the other children in the family. Counseling and support may be helpful for the parents.
The outlook for each child depends on his or her intelligence and language ability. Some people with autism become independent adults. A majority can be taught to live in community-based homes, although they may require supervision throughout adulthood.
Questions To Ask Your Doctor For Autism Treatment
- When will the symptoms appear?
- What type of symptoms will there be?
- What if the child just likes to be left alone as opposed to being autistic?
- What type of test is given to diagnose autism?
- Where is testing done?
- How accurate is the test?
- Is the autism mild or severe?
- Will the child be able to attend public school if they have mild autism?
- Is there a cure?