The management of autism in the United States today can take many forms, with each discipline designed to maximize the life skills of the person living with autism.
Plans for managing autistic symptoms are sometimes called “interventions.” These interventions work to promote and develop life skills that include social interaction skills, and communication and language development skills.
Options may include behavior therapy to address the range of social, linguistic, and behavioral difficulties associated with autism spectrum disorder. Some of these new programs focus on reducing problem behaviors and teaching new life skills as an intervention. Successful education programs typically include a team of specialists and a variety of predictable, structured activities. Early diagnosis is key in the classroom, and preschool children who receive early interventions typically respond well.
Through awareness and education programs, parents and other family members can learn how to play, work, and interact with their children in ways that promote understanding of common social interaction. Other therapies that may also be part of the autism interventions include speech and physical therapy.
Experts agree that no medication can improve the core signs of autism spectrum disorder, but the healthcare marketplace abounds with medications that claim to help control symptoms. These medications should be chosen as a last resort, and not as a means of avoiding the intervention process.
Recommended Read: Prognosis of Autism
Best results in the treatment of autism typically happen when there is a team of trusted professionals that may include social workers, teachers, therapists, and support groups of families sharing a similar experience. Medical professionals can provide information about resources and explain state and federal programs available for children and adults with disabilities including autism spectrum disorder.
There are many myths and misconceptions about autism spectrum disorder and certainly the internet is full of hype directed at taking advantage of people who have this disability. Be sure to carefully study and evaluate any services that may be offered and discuss them with your healthcare provider.
If someone in your family is diagnosed with autism, remember to take time out to relax. This may be a challenge in busy families, but relaxation should be a priority. Caring for someone diagnosed with autism is a full time job, and can be stressful. It is often beneficial to meet with other families of children with autism spectrum disorder to learn creative ways to cope.