Autism is a developmental disorder in which individuals face challenges in their language, social skill, behavior, and thinking. The symptoms of these challenges are visible before age three. If parents suspect their child of having these traits, it is advisable to consult a health care provider.
Autism Connect is a complete guide for parents and children facing the consequences of autism. Their website provides valuable information about service to the autism community. The data includes recommendations of some of the best apps for autism, books, treatment methods (conventional and complementary). For all their members and followers, spread across the globe, they present a special autism directory.
This accurate autism directory is a useful resource for families and professionals. From health, therapies, and education, the autism directory provides addresses of special schools and therapists within easy reach of families. To get the details, one just has to visit the directory, enter the details about the country, state, and city and lastly select the type of service needed.
The sole aim of this autism directory is to offer support to the autism families in any part of the world.
In many cases, autism affects the development of language/speech and social skills. This impacts the child’s approach toward focus and learning. It is therefore important to provide children with autism tools such as apps to help them gain the essential, reading, recognition and cognitive skills.
These apps are compatible with phones like iPhones, iPads, and androids. They are easy to use, light and can be easily carried.
A large number of educational apps help in developing the child’s potential. They are formatted in a story form or to be played like games. Some of the apps have fun mascots that make learning interesting and full of fun.
Some of the best apps for autism available at Autism Connect includes -
1. ABA Programs for Kids with Autism: A guide for parents and caregivers
Applicable for iWatch, iPad and iPhone, this ‘paid’ app is a valuable guide for parents of children with behavioural problems. It has 25 ABA programs together with useful tips to help a child with autism.
One can easily download the free app, Aiko & Egor: Animation 4 Autism on iPhone, iWatch, and iPad. Developed by See Beneath, this app is in a simplified animation form that children find very engaging. It has been proved beneficial in managing many developmental levels of autism.
3. Autimo - Discover emotions
The name itself suggests that this app helps the child to learn about facial expressions and emotions. Easy to download on Android, this free app displays more than 50 coloured pictures and enjoyable activities including spot the differences and match the pairs.
Some of the best apps for autism are designed for individuals two years old to adults. They are interesting, informative and easy to navigate.
Children with autism experience adverse personal issues that prompt them to act or engage in inappropriate behaviour patterns. To find the most effective treatment options, parents must visit a paediatrician to get in-depth knowledge about various therapies to deal with different symptoms of autism. After a thorough diagnosis, the paediatrician offers effective aid for children as per the level and severity of the symptoms. The child can be asked to be enrolled for speech therapy, occupational therapy, play therapy, yoga therapy, drama therapy or animal assisted therapy.
Drama Therapy For Autism
Drama therapy is more than just acting on a stage in the presence of an audience. It involves dialogue delivery and facial expressions to denote the emotion in the skit. This helps individuals with autism to recognize facial expressions and increased mental health. Drama therapists attend individuals throughout the planned activities. They allow them to enact scenes that represent the type of life they want to live. This brings positive changes in their behaviour and emotional state. Acting in groups also improves interpersonal relationships with other participants. Improvements are seen in skills through active participation in:
Storytelling or speech
Playing roles of their favourite character
Improvisation on instruments such as a piano
Masks (to help them identify the character they play)
Objectives Of Drama Therapy For Autism
The key goal ofdrama therapy for autism is to encourage the expression of their body language and emotion in a dramatic activity. The activities designed by the therapists, for each participant, are aimed to bring the following positive behavioural changes:
Improve interpersonal relationship skills
Help individuals face problems more healthily without self-harming
Bring about physical and emotional well-being
Improve overall quality of life
Ranging from children to adults, drama therapy helps treat many issues related to autism.
Play Therapy For Autism
Play therapy for autism is a way to release stress or past trauma, paving way for the healthy development of children with autism. The physical role-playing activities of play therapy help individuals to communicate, remove traumatic memories, reveal their repressed emotions, and aid personal growth. Thus, play therapy is considered as an effective cognitive and psychological treatment.
Play therapy is the most sought after treatment that benefits children who experience emotional or behavioural challenges. This approach is specially designed to treat children of all age groups, in solo or group sessions.
For play therapy, a therapist creates a comfortable and safe environment for children is allowed to play with as few limits as possible. The playroom or the counselling space is well equipped with a wide selection of toys. When playing or interacting with these toys, the therapist encourages them to express their feelings. By observing them playing with toys, the therapist learns about their emotions, and thoughts which the child finds difficult to express verbally.
Play therapy for autism helps children, adolescents, and even adults. The playful exploration and activities enhance the individual’s cognitive skills, physical health, enhance relationships, behaviours, and motor movement (balance, limb coordination, fine motor skills).
Autism is a distressing neuro-developmental condition that becomes evident during the early childhood stage. The symptoms is easily detectable between 12 to 24 months, and include marked delays in speech, behaviour problem and social development. There is no cure for autism, but therapies and treatments through medications can help in alleviating the symptoms to induce relaxing effects.
Treatment approaches for autism involve therapies such as occupational therapy, physical therapy, play therapy, art therapy, and speech therapy. Applied behavior analysis or ABA therapy for autism is a treatment based on introducing precise behaviour skills in individuals. The therapy is a flexible treatment that is modified to meet the unique needs of each individual. The main goal of applied behavior analysis therapy for autism is to teach skills that are useful in everyday life.
How It Works
ABA therapy for autism is a proven approach that helps individuals to learn new behaviours. After collecting the necessary information, the psychologist chalks out a plan according to the behavior glitches faced by each individual. They modify their social and emotional behaviour and boost intellectual ability. Through an ABA approach, the therapist helps individuals to adjust to normal life and develop skills that match with their peers.
Aba therapy resembles a series of ‘tests, where the therapist asks the participants to follow a certain behaviour (for example, to pick up a certain object or await their turn). If they accomplish the given tasks, they are rewarded in the form of a treat, a picture card, or a comic of their favorite cartoon hero. In case they do not comply, the task is repeated.
The tasks are based on the behavior evaluation of each individual, his/her abilities and needs. For instance, if a person is capable of recognizing shapes, the therapist will focus on training him/her on different and more challenging tasks.
What It Does
Applied behavior analysis therapy for autism tries to introduce new behaviour or strengthen the existing ones, hereby diminishing unwanted behaviours. This therapy is based on an ‘applied behavior analysis’ approach, meant for improving his/her skills. The therapy provides:
Positive Behaviour: The therapists'test individuals to figure out the reason behind a particular behavior. Accordingly, they introduce a work-strategy to teach skills and make their behaviour more positive. The goal is to encourage them to behave appropriately in society.
Essential Response: The goal of ABA therapy for autism is to improve the pivotal/essential skills in each individual. These skills help in improving their ability to take part in a meaningful conversation.
ABA therapist either provides modified behavioural instruction individually or to a small group. The therapist teaches skills using positive feedback to encourage the participants.