Autism, also referred to as Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), is a developmental disorder that affects children. Children with autism usually have trouble interacting socially, and they also find it hard to communicate with people.
More often than not, parents will notice the signs and symptoms of this disorder before the child reaches three years old. Research has proven that autism is caused by a number of genetic and environmental factors. However, a pregnant woman exposed to rubella, valproic acid, alcohol and cocaine stands a higher chance of giving birth to an autistic child.
It is important to note that there are no known cures for ASD. Nevertheless, there are treatments and therapy options that can help a child with autism gain social, behavioral, communicative and cognitive skills. The earlier the child receives an intervention, the better the prognosis.
Applied behavioral analysis is a notable treatment approach that is widely used by healthcare professionals. It has been widely adopted by many schools and treatment facilities. It is used to encourage positive behaviors while teaching new skills in autistic children. Early Intensive Behavioral Intervention is a form of ABA that is normally applied right after diagnosis. It is used to help autistic children below three years old.
Speech therapy is important since it helps children with autism learn to communicate. In turn, autistic children grow up having an active social life, which is of significant value. However, not all children with autism can develop verbal communication skills. Hence, some have to be taught how to use non-verbal cues.
Some autistic children may need physical therapy to help them improve their gross motor skills and sensory integration. This greatly improves their ability to feel, and they also become more aware of their body in space. In an effort to ameliorate some of the symptoms associated with ASD such as aggression, irritability and self-inflicted pain, medication may also be recommended.
As you can see, there’s no one-size-fits-all approach when it comes to treatments and therapies for autism. Our team at Montana Psychiatry & Brain Health Center is proud to offer personalized care for this disorder. Contact us today to book a consultation in Billings and learn more information.