Jump With Your Autistic Child!

It is so simple, yet so much fun. Jumping is a great way for your child to have fun, do something healthy and gain confidence.

Finding activities that children enjoy can often be a challenge. Often children with autism may struggle with co-ordination or other physical challenges that make it hard for them to participate in sports. This often causes them to lose interest in sport related activities and can lower self esteem.

Consider Jumping! The physical act of jumping for most children is simple and individual enough that they are able to excel and in turn gain new physical abilities and confidence. So how do you turn a simple jump in to an activity? Use your imagination. Invent games or imaginary worlds.

Most autistic children have great imaginations and enjoy inventing stories or worlds. Imagine walking through a magical forest, having to jump over logs or to enter the castle. Possibly a game to see who can jump the fastest in 10 seconds or who can jump the farthest or highest.

The most important key is to be sure to make it FUN. If you are competitive in any way, let the child win most of the time! Be aware of the child's feelings and what they want to do. Try to adapt the activity to what they are interested in, not dictating the entire exercise having to happen a certain way.

Over time, the child will develop greater interest, confidence and you can start to shape the activities to further improve the child's skill. It is also important to regularly participate to keep the child interested, but not too often as this may be overwhelming.

Variety is important to keep it interesting and the activity should be focused on the concept of the game or story, not the physical act of jumping. For example, you may ask your child “Do you want to play the magical castle game?” (which is actually the lets practice jumping and have fun at the same time game).

Jumping may seem simple, but that is the beauty of it – a child can make good progress in a non-competitive environment. Using a little creativity they can learn, gain physical ability and confidence and new interest in sports related activities.

Most sports benefit from jumping, either directly such as basketball, or indirectly as jumping can assist with co-regulation and running.

There are additional resources available for techniques and ideas on how to higher higher and better at the AIIG web site. Try to incorporate these ideas in your games slowly and build in additional techniques and exercises as the child is able.

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Autism and Holiday Breaks: Designing a Vacation Activity Schedule

Extended breaks from a routine can be refreshing and rejuvenating for many of us. That being the case, it is often comforting to fall back into your own pattern of daily life. Some of those affected by autism, though, have a very tough time adjusting to changes in their schedules and their surroundings. Therefore, a typically reinforcing vacation can spark numerous behavioral challenges and may leave you wondering what happened!

While it is not possible to recreate an individual's school or daily schedule during holiday breaks and longer school absences, it is possible to help add a little more structure. Rigidity, on your part, is not the goal here (it is a vacation after all!) But most individuals with moderate to severe autism will often choose to follow a short activity schedule when given the choice. A short schedule such as this will most likely resemble what he / she is using at school; and therefore ease their anxiety or frustration. Unlike a school activity schedule, your vacation schedule can be composed of primarily fun or relaxing 'activities' with a few educational or chore associated items added as you see fit. An example of a vacation activity schedule could look like this:

Watch TV
Play Outside

Clean-up Room
Empty Laundry
Practice Piano

12:00 Lunch

Notice that there are choices when it comes to leisure and chore / educational activities. Also, sometimes there are not any choices, such as at Lunch Time. Making sure that this schedule is followed to a tee is not the goal here. It will add some structure to their day and (very importantly) give you the ability to add unsuspected activities like Going to Grandmother's House . These unplanned events have the potential of intensifying a routine-break anxiety flare-up. When these trips / events are added to the vacation activity schedule in advance, it can help prepare the individual for this change in their routine.

Although it is a good goal to help individuals with ASD become more flexible when it comes to following (and not following) routines, these vacation schedules can really help in the mean time. Many of us (myself included) use a written or digital system to schedule our days, weeks or months. The digital era now provides any number of devices to help in this area, from PDA's to smart-phones, laptops, etc. My eyes were opened to this issue when I first began teaching students with autism. After a relatively short month and a half of summer vacation, I was preparing myself for a certain challenging week of teaching. After all, my students most likely did not have many demands placed on them through the summer and now I would be asking them to complete any number of challenging activities. To my total surprise, most of my students seemed to enjoy the fact that they could now continue their school routines and behavior challenges were low! Again, it is important to add periodic changes to routines that will help create more flexibility. Remember to have fun and allow your son / daughter the ability to follow a routine that will help them acclimate.

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A New Way of Thinking About Nonverbal Communication/Gestures and Autism

“Have I ever told you how the actions of others stop me from talking? It is as if their hand movements, their eyes or their tone of voice stops me from talking. I find myself focusing on their behaviors and forgetting what I should say in response. It is as if their behaviors become more important than their words. For example, when my mother raises her eyesbrows at the same time she raises her voice, I find I can not move or talk. me to stop and I can not go beyond that. I see my sister yell back at my mother at times like that, but I can not. so bad, but I wonder what makes me stop and do not have the ability to respond? I feel like my body just will not let me respond. At other times, when my mother is in a good mood, I see her behaviors – her eyes twinkle, her tone of voice is mellow and soft. t in all my words. Do not they say it's all in the timing? ”

What is this autistic boy telling us? He seems to be entrapped by others' nonverbal gestures. He can see that this does not stop his sister from talking back to their mother. He wonders why it stops him. He also realizes that if his mother is in a good mood he has more of a chance in using 'words' (if he has them).

Let's take a moment to focus on this area of ​​nonverbal communication. It seems that our autistic boy has no choice but to focus on the nonverbal gestures of others and in turn fees manipulated by their nonverbal gestures. The behaviors of others stop or propel him to talk. From the perspective of an Incomplete Attachment, we can probably make sense of what is going on here. Let's take a step back and think about nonverbal communication and nonverbal gestures. From my point of view, the definition of nonverbal communication is the body's way of unconscious communicational feelings and emotions. Sometimes a typical person may not have access to his emotions so that person may not be consciously in touch with a specific feeling and that can not verbally express a particular feeling. Fortunately, our bodies always are in touch with our emotions and those feelings come out through our nonverbal gestures / communications. The autistic person (low functioning) does not have access to words, but his body retains the memory of his emotions. Thus the unconscious (low functioning) autistic child is tuned into nonverbal communication much more than he is tuned into verbal communication. That is why our autistic boy focuses on the nonverbal gestures of others. Typical individuals are simultanously unconscious and consciously aware of what others (this will depend on the individual and their level of consciousness of nonverbal gestures) are saying nonverbally. If we think of the autistic individual as unconscious, he would by definition be more attuned to nonverbal communication versus verbal communication.

Another point to remember here is that not only is our autistic boy more attuned to nonverbal communication as compared to the typical person, but he also has no way to access his feelings and subregively communicate those feelings (lacks self-agency). Since he is left to only focus on the nonverbal communication and feel manipulated by others' gestures.

Finally, as this autistic boy develops, gains an attachment, has access to his feelings, develops self-agency and is less dissociated he will not only be able to read others nonverbal gestures, but also will be able to verbally express his feelings like all 'typical' people do. Thus as the autistic person develops, we see a change in his ability to function in the world. Autism is seen on a continuum from low functioning to high functioning to Asperger's. I think there is a good reason to look at autism in this way. The child does develop. The child can actually move off of this continuum and become as typical as others.

Because the person with autism has never experienced a completed attachment, his attachment process will be slow. Without an attachment, the outside world sounds unsafe and confusing. Thus the first step for the caregiver / therapist is to go within the child's world. By doing this, you are demonstrating that you are willing to share his space. As he can trust you in his world, he will begin to slowly merge into your “world. He will gain the confidence that mobilizes his self-agency and as this happens he will be able to access his emotions and use words in relationship to others .

A key element to remember as you help the child complete the attachment process is to maintain the belief and faith that your child can develop.

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Healing Autism Naturally – Today’s Functional Medicine Treatments Often Deliver Dramatic Improvement

Autism statistics in today's world are alarming. Even more alarming is having your own child diagnosed with autism.

In the past, there were few treatments that promised improvement in the symptoms of autism, and therefore parents viewed a diagnosis of autism as a sentence of doom. Recently, however, an alternative approach called Functional Medicine has made great strides in identifying the biochemical causes of an individual child's autism and in delivering significant improvement.

Autism's Symptoms

Typically, autism is diagnosed at 30 months or earlier. It is a neurological disorder that disrupted normal brain function. Early diagnosis is key to effective treatment.

Autistic children tend to have difficulty with verbal and non-verbal communication, intellectual development, and forming social relationships. In some cases, they also show compulsions and aggressive or self-injurious behaviors.

The signs and symptoms of autism include low birth weight, substantial failure to develop social relationships, language disorders with impaired understanding, involuntary repetition of a word or sentence just spoken by another person, reversal of pronouns, compulsive actions, and in most cases, slow intellectual development.

Identifying Autism's Cause in an Individual

Causes of autism that clinicians have observed include:
· Exposure to toxins, especially heavy metals in the environment, childhood vaccines and pesticides
· Food allergies
· Gastrointestinal disorders

All of these factors cause toxicity in the body that affects the nervous system.

By testing a child's blood and urine, we can assess his or her neurotransmitter and nutritional deficiencies as well as the presence of toxins and thereby determine the appropriate therapy for that individual.

Natural Therapies for Autism

If the laboratory test results indicate a deficiency in neurotransmitters, the Functional Medicine practitioner would prescribe their replenishment. Neurotransmitters involve a chemical makeup in the brain that is responsible for behavior and learning.

If the lab tests indicate the presence of heavy metals or other toxins, the Functional Medicine practitioner would eliminate these through detoxification protocols, including the use of nutrition and detoxifying the gastrointestinal tract with natural botanical substances.

Nutritional deficiencies would be corrected through a change in diet and a prescription for natural supplements.

Improvement and Prognosis

Sleep is generally the first area to improve, often within one week. Hypersensitivity and socialability are usually the next to improve. Finally, speech and potty training improve as well.

Although a child may still require special education, speech therapy and other therapy, the outlook for autistic children is much brighter now than in the past.

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Autism – Helpful Hints for Asperger Syndrome Child

Our grandson Ben was diagnosed as having Aspergers Syndrome when he was 9 years old. This mental disorder is a high performing form of autism. One of the many hits of autistic children is that they do not process language and verbal instructions the way normal people do. At least this is the case for Ben. A major problem Ben had during his school years was his inability to follow verbal instructions. If a teacher told the class what the next days homework assignment was Ben would never write it down or remember what she said. If, however, she would write the assignment on a piece of paper and give it to Ben he would be able to keep up with it.

One thing Ben's mother learned to do was to print his schedule of classes and tape it to the outside of his binder. This completely helped him get the correct class and get there on time.

Those specialists who work with Asperger students suggested we make detailed lists and post them where needed. This suggestion definitely helped. You may think that such a detailed list would not be necessary, but I assure you, it is necessary.

Here is an example of a reminder which was placed on the bathroom mirror in order for Ben to help Ben get ready for school each day:

  1. Get a clean towel and wash cloth.
  2. Get into shower and soap body thoroughly and rinse well.
  3. Shampoo your hair.
  4. Dry body completely with towel.
  5. Brush your teeth.
  6. Use deodorant under arms.
  7. Get dressed using clean clothes.

Without this written list, Ben would fail to perform the basic tasks he needed to do.

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Give the Gift of Music to Someone With ASD This Holiday Season

The gift-giving season is here and you may be considering just what to pick-up for your child, grandchild or friend with autism. It can sometimes be difficult to decide what present is appropriate and / or will be enjoyable for someone on the autism spectrum. Here are a few reasons to consider The Young Method this holiday season for someone you know with ASD.

It's Fun!

Having the ability to create music and play familiar tunes on the piano is an empowering skill! Instead of passively listening to a song, students can now recreate it, alter it or even design a brand new piece of music of their own. Since our system initially uses error less teaching methods, many of the more frustrating aspects of learning the piano are eliminated. Everyone enjoys making progress and the positive attention they will receive for learning new and more challenging pieces is a great goal.

It's Educational!

Most of us have heard about the numerous benefits associated with learning how to play the piano; from fine-motor skill development to future social skills development through attending musical functions. While this is true, learning to play an inexpensive keyboard or an upright piano can also help reading skills, attention and focus as well as math skills. The best thing is that all of these benefits will develop, regardless of the relative difficulty of the music being played.

Toys, Toys, Toys

Chances are, you or other family members have some toys in mind that would make great holiday presents for your child with ASD. Why not supplement these with an activity which could develop into a life long skill! Also, I encourage teachers and parents to allow students to explore the piano and just 'jam'. A typical, modern electronic keyboard offers a huge variety of instrument sounds that are easy to control. Combining this with the fact that the student can independently use all of these aspects, most of our students have a blast just exploring the keyboard on their own.

Unfortunately, most toys eventually run their course and become 'old news' after a certain amount of time. The great thing about the piano is that, as the student advances, it can change and adapt to them. After learning the basics, errorlessly, they can learn fun and recognizable songs and simple pieces from today's musical repertoire.

Is he ready for the piano?

One of the truly effective aspects of ABA is that concepts are broken down, systematically, and introduced on an individualized basis. In other words, if playing with multiple fingers is too challenging at this point in time, the materials will change to accommodate this scenario. Based on the initial performance of my very first students, I developed a system that would be as inclusive as possible. Therefore, some students will find the difficulty level just right and others will progress quickly and have many early successes to build on.

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How To Live With Asperger’s Syndrome

None of us are considered “normal”, none of us live with a sense of normalcy in our everyday lives. Some people are born with more intelligence than others, some are born with more physical strength than others. Whatever the case is, none of that makes anyone any better off than the other, we just have our flaws and have our strengths, embrace them, and then go about our days. When it comes to someone living with Asperger's Syndrome, it is a totally different beast because you live in your own world. You see the world differently than most people. Someone can stop and tell you a joke and you will not need to know it was a joke unless they laugh. If the person telling you the joke is not smiling or laughing right away, your lack of reading ability and stimulus will affect how you react and it will make the income even more awkward than when it had started off. It all is what is referred to as, pre-operational standard, which is perception over logic.

Just like a child, you can sniff out things from people but overall you do not pay attention because you end up thinking nothing of it. Like for instance, you can tell a joke, but it might not be funny, but it would be funny to you. No one else would be laughing, but you know you told a joke and you're okay with that at least. Once you get past how people feel about you or look at you, then you're on your way to accepting yourself. People living with Asperger's Syndrome battle with self esteem issues every single day of their lives. Their brain functioning is stalled in one aspect or another, be it physical motor skills or communication and social. Some “Aspies” they're nicknamed, just have the social cognitive disorder, and others have the physical motor skills deficiency where they can not really perform anything that requires good coordination. Like tying shoes, and operating motor vehicles take a lot of concentration and coordination and some “Aspies” may not have the wherewithal to succeed at those two actions. Others are considered lower functioning and do not make eye contact, start yelling really loud out of now and making someone uncomfortable and rely on other people to do things for them.

Then there are the higher functioning people that make eye contact, use inside voices and manners and make it so that you can not even tell them they have a problem at all. Those type of people are on the mild end of the Autistic spectrum. There is nothing wrong with either end, all ends of the spectrum bringing something to the table and either way, people with Asperger's Syndrome are naturally bright individuals. Some are mathematical in nature and at the same time good with words, and others are engineer types that can calculate and build a model that will one day turn into a real life building. They are considered geeks and will never be the life of the party or most popular on school grounds, but many have married, had children and live very “normal 'lives in today's society.

In order to live with Asperger's Syndrome successfully, you need to be aware of who you are, and what you bring to the table. Do not try to be someone you're not, embrace your strengths and weaknesses daily and do not be afraid to tell others who you are and what limitations you possess so that your employer or teacher will not assume you're just clowning around and won 't fail or fire you. So as long as you end up being okay with you, understand who you are and what you offer, than you'll be okay. It can be very tough to live your life different and it is very understandable to lash out with frustration, but as long as you understand that over time you will be okay and soon you will become more and more accepted especially with all the new media attention garnering the disorder, than everything will be okay in your world. Just take it easy, breathe regularly and take care of yourself and you will be alright. The world is a crazy place and sometimes we need different people in order to keep it going.

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Writings of an Asperger Syndrome Child

We noticed that our grandson Ben, who has Aspergers Syndrome (a high performing form of autism) had pieces of paper folded or in some cases wadded up just lying around the house. We began to read them to see if they were important enough to keep.

We discovered that Ben was writing about all of his frustrations at school and at home. We collected some and found that he is a gifted writer at expressing his feelings.

Ben's years in the public school system were most unhappy for him. We are strong believers in public education. Ben's mother is a second grade teacher in a public school system and my wife, Sue, taught for more than twenty years before she retired.

However, if we had it to do over, we would make every effort to find a type of education that would have better fit Ben's needs. He certainly needed to be in a very small class situation where he could get a great deal of one on one instruction. I am not suggesting that the public schools can not meet the needs of your particular child but in Ben's case, not a lot was known at that time how best to teach Asperger children. Hopefully, methods have improved.

Here are two of Ben's writings which were written when he was about fourteen years old:

“You say you want to help, yet the problem still persisters.

You try to help me understand, but shortly after, you desist.

You want me to do better, yet you only hold me back.

You are always trying to raise my hopes,

But from all this, confidence I lack.

None of your ideas or plans are ever followed through.

I'm just some kind of circus freak to entertain you.

To those who do not understand, (the vast majority),

You'd stay at home and weep all day

If you knew how it felt to be me. ”


“Class begins as the tardy bell rings.

I rush to get inside-I barely make it.

I quickly grab my calculator and my math book.

“Great! Homework on a weekend,” I say.

Only to be interrupted by a flash of the overhead.

A Warm-up.

I understand none of the formulas or the equations,

Or the problems, or the stress that comes with having to learn and understand.

All these random equations and symbols.

The warm-up is over.

Everyone else understands the explanations of how she got this number or that number.

I have not even lifted my pencil.

I struggle to understand Algebra once and for all.

I try to comprehend the formulas and numbers and signs.

But it only hurts my feeling of self worth.

And there's the bell. ”

How sad to know that Ben was crying for help and no one was there to help him.

It is critical that Asperger children be diagnosed as early as possible because they will need plenty of help once they start school.

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Autism: Aspergers Syndrome – Beware of Bullies

Our grandson, Ben, was diagnosed with Asperger Syndrome when he was 9 years old. This mental disorder is considered to be a high performance form of autism. Children with this disorder have many of the same characteristics autistic children do.

Bullying seems to be a common behavior that Asperger children must endure. I have read about other children who have had similar experiences as the one I am describing today.

One day Sue was at Ben's house when he came home from school. He was sobbing as he got off the bus because some of the students had been really mean to him. This was one of those times when his anger turned into rage. He said, “If I had a gun I would shoot them.” (He did not have access to a gun nor did he know how to use one.)

As grandmothers do, Sue tried to calm him and reminded him of what would happen to him if he ever did such a thing or even threatened anything like that. He said, “Well, they deserve it.” Then he stopped crying and straightened his face and said, “Nana, I'm not that stupid.” She reassured him of his valuable worth and of her unconditional love for him. Soon he was feeling better.

I have great concern for children like Ben who experience episodes similar to the one I have mentioned who maybe do not have understanding teachers or parents. These children have enough with which to deal without having to be hurt by bullying.

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Should Children With Autism or Aspergers Syndrome Be Suspended From School?

Should children with autism or Aspergers Syndrome (or other related disorders) be suspended from school?

If the child is in a regular public / private school and is overly aggressive towards other students or teachers, what to do? What if they are on an IEP at this school?

If the child is attending a special school due to their condition, does it make sense that the child be suspended?

What about the age of the child? Should a child of 5 or 8 years old be suspended? What about a child of 12 or 13? Any difference if the child is 16 with a disorder?

Certainly if the child is on an IEP that recognizes their disorder or they are attending a special school that claims to be able to help children with the child's disorder, then NO, they should NOT suspend the child. Age MAY play a role in certain cases.

That said, it is important to recognize every child is different. When it comes to these disorders, they are all different and two children with the same exact disorders, same age, similar backgrounds can have very different views and understanding of the world around them. It may be appropriate to suspend one child, but the other may simply not fully understand the seriousness. The point simply does not get through.

While it may be possible that the child will get the message, will understand the seriousness, it is important to be sure this really is the case. Often these children will learn to say what the adults around them want to hear. For example, when asked “Do you want to be suspended?” Egypt “Do you understand that this is a really big deal (or problem)?” the child will most certainly respond with what the adult wants to hear. They may have enjoyed their suspension or maybe they enjoy the excitement and attention or change. School policy can assure progress in helping these children.

If you are dealing with this issue, it is recommended you discuss this with a skilled advocate for guidance. You may also consider seeking information online via articles, forums or similar.

The most important thing is to remember that this is about the child. Try to understand their view, their world. Possibly they had a bad morning bus ride and it came out at 1pm as aggressive behavior. Maybe the child is frustrated they are unable to do certain work. There are so many factors here, so may points to work on and address. Try to stay calm, objective and constructive and help your child.

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Our Modern Epidemic of Autism, ADHD and Behavioral Problems

The Secretary of Health and Human Services, Kathleen Sebelius, has made it official the CDC now reports that 1 in 100 children are autistic. A study conducted by the National Survey of Children's Health (NSCH) found a staggering 1 in 63 children were reported to be autistic and the rate climbed to 1 in 38 if the child was a boy! Even more frightening is that 1 in 6 infants have developmental delays. The rate of ADHD has now reached levels of 1 in 10 children; this can be easily verified by talking with most elementary school teachers. Why is this epidemic exploding within our modern society? More importantly what can be done that is safe and effective to help these children? It is vital that parents are provided an understanding of these disorders, which affects the health of their child's brain and metabolically what can be done to restore health.

One approach that is gaining ground is biomedical care for children with autism, ADHD, OCD and behavioral problems. Biomedical care for these disorders is a science-based, metabolic approach to treatment. Everyone is now agreed that psychotropic drugs do not treat the problem; they simply reduce or suppress some of the symptoms. It would seem that a better choice is to address the underlying metabolic issues and health problems in these disorders. The primary guiding principle then is simple: remove what is causing harm, and add what is missing!

Research is now demonstrating that children with these disorders often have an exaggerated response to specific foods, airborne allergens, toxic chemicals and metals in our environment. It is well documented that they often lack various nutrients, enzymes, anti-oxidants, and essential fatty acids, and that they require methylation support. The combination of these factors leads to or aggravates neuroimmune dysfunction causing low-grade inflammation in affected brain tissues. This state of oxidative stress and chronic inflammation in the brain causes the nerve cells to not communicate properly with one another. These disorders have aptly been called disconnection syndromes, one area the brain is not communicating well with other areas leading to symptoms in cognition, emotion and behavior.

A partial outline of possible biomedical care for a child with one of these disorders:

1st: Laboratory tests through blood, urine and stool are performed to rule out any frank pathology and provide vital clues on what road to take for real healing.

2nd: The diet is improved along with specific dietary restrictions. A primary diet goal may be a casein and gluten-free diet, along with removal of sugar, preservatives, and food additives.

3rd: Specific laboratory IgG food allergy testing may be performed to identify other food allergies that could have led to brain inflammation, and then remove these foods from the diet.

4th: It is vital to identify any problems with maldigestion, malabsorption, and dysbiosis through specific laboratory tests such as comprehensive stool analysis. Then improve GI function by overcoming dysbiosis and leaky gut problems, a primary source for chronic inflammation in these disorders.

5th: At this point specific supportive nutrients for autism and ADHD are added, depending on what has been found on history, exam and clinical lab.

6th: Support methylation and sulfoxidation-sulfate inadequacies and other cellular detoxification pathways

7th: Chelation of heavy metals can have marked benefit once all other factors have been addressed.

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Tips That Help You To Work With Children With Aspergers

Kids with Aspergers syndrome can be hard to work with because they have several problems with social interaction. As a parent it'll be tough to encourage and guide your child through this difficult condition as it may seem like he or she is set on their ways.

Asperger's syndrome is described as a dysfunction which affects an individual's ability to empathize with others and interact with them. It's tough for children with Asperger's to understand nonverbal communication. The condition is also characterized by an intense interest or behavior. This can be anything from paying lots of attention to the laces in their shoes to repetitively washing their hands.

So what could you do as a parent to assist to work with the child? The very first thing you need to understand is that this is a symptom and not the mistake of the kid. Once you acknowledge this on a deep level, you will be able to understand the social mistakes, temper tantrums and focus on seemingly unimportant things.

By acknowledging and understanding the problem, you can begin to build trust and rapport with your kid so that when there are any challenges, the kid will be able to lean on you for support and help. You want to develop a positive interaction to even offer some kind of stability as other people will often misunderstand and may be negative towards the kid.

One of the other things that you would have to do is focus on what stress the child is facing. Lots of behavior is created by outside stimuli like loud noise and even settings where there are lots of others. By pinpointing what is causing stress, you could limit any behavior which could create difficulty. You'll also learn what situations to avoid and be able to cope with the situation knowing that the kid is under stress.

Much like a child with ADD, it's important to set in place a daily routine to help the kid get things done and stay focused on moving forward. Work with the kid and set up a plan on when to get up, go to sleep, eat lunch, play, and spend time on their schoolwork. Do not try to introduce a plan all at once. Try to slowly integrate each part of the day bit by bit till the kid is adjusted.

Kids with Aspergers syndrome need a strong circle of support so it is important that you let other parents, school teachers, and family members know about the condition. This way, they will understand that the child is not at fault for their behavior and their inability to be adjusted socially.

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Hippotherapy As a Way of Fighting With Children Autism

Analyzes show that about 8.7 of every 10,000 children are autistic and more than 1 in 300 children have some of the symptoms of autism. These statistics are not very pleasant to hear but they are showing the current situation.

Autism is defined as a disorder in the development that affects on the children from birth till the age of three. These children show difficulty in developing normal relationships with others in three areas of behavior – social relationships and interactions; language and communication; and when it's about their activities and interests.

The cause of autism remains unknown but the parents and the experts are taking their best to figure it out. One of the hypotheses is that it's about some damage to the brain that has happened despite prenatally, though this has not been conclusively proved, but also possibly responsible some genetic or chromosomal abnormality, viral agents, metabolic disorders, immune intolerance or prenatal anoxia.

There are many methods for striving autism and they are all concentrated on finding a way to make the autistic individual communicate more effectively using social skills trainings. One of the methods that appear very effective for this disorder is the hippo therapy or horse therapy. It's a fact that the children love horses; they are impressed by their appearance, their strength, love to play with horse toys, play horse games. In this case their communication with them is based not only on playing, but on some type of bonding.

Hippo therapy is a term used to describe the movement of a horse as part of a treatment strategy, used by physical, occupational, and speech therapists. Psychiatrists found out that children with autism struggle to communicate but when they are with horses, they can make so much. It's not about teaching riding or horse care skills but the thing is that it's been clinically proven that just being in the vicinity of horses changes our brainwave patterns. Doctor Franklin Levinson declares that the horses have a calming effect which helps people stop becoming fixated on past or negative events.

It's been proven the children can often manage a horse more easily and more quickly than adults, developing an equal relationship rather than trying to control. A child who is given just a little insight into dealing with a horse can easily become the natural leader the horse is looking for. The horse promises safe and peaceful and for return will cooperate with what the child asks of him.

This way the child can improve his communication skills, his psychological, cognitive, and behavioral functioning, his motor skills and coordination, his sensory integration but also his muscle tone, head and trunk control, postural control, his strength and cardiovascular condition.

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Techniques To Use When Working With Individuals With Autism

Autism has been difficult for most to understand. It is my belief that all the information that one needs to know is available to understand the phenomenon of autism. It is my belief that individuals with autism can not reach their potential because those who are working with them do not understand the cause or etiology of autism. Once autism is understood we will see these children grow beyond our wildest dreams. It is my belief that the individual with autism has not benefited from an attachment. I call this an incomplete attachment. Our job is to help the individual to complete the attachment process. Some suggestions on what one might do are recommended below. These ideas are based on Attachment Relational Therapy:

1) First you need to accept that it will be difficult and it will be up to you to encourage the attachment. The child / adolescent can not be liable for the awakening of the attachment despite the child is ready to complete the attachment process;

2) You will need to go into the child's world (know the particular child) versus demanding that they accept your world. This is an ongoing part of the therapy;

3) Let your client take the lead. In other words, let the client determine what will happen in therapy even though it does not make sense to you;

4) Use every moment with the child to attach;

5) It may not look like the child is attaching;

6) Do not give up on the child;

7) Always talk with the child as if they understand you and hold onto the belief that they can develop.

8) Use projection as a means of communication. This process works with verbal children. Use videos, art projects, toys, play dough, doll house, puppets, etc. to allow the child / adolescent to talk about the other. This technique works because the person with autism can not be direct and talk by representing himself, but he can talk about what he sees outside of himself. So what he sees on the outside of himself is really what is going on inside of him;

9) It is important to fill in the gaps for the autistic child. They live in a unsymbolized world. When you are working with him always speak of what is going on and leave space for an answer from him to respond even if you know he may not respond. This teachers him about interaction (Floortime is based on this same concept);

10) Always act as if there is a person that can not interact with you, but wants to interact. You might want to say “Is there something you want to tell me?” I would do this even with children who use echolalia or are nonverbal;

11) Theory of mind – the child sees to lack the ability to know that the other has feelings and to also express their own feelings. It is not that the child lacks theory of mind, but instead he is dissociated and so can not access and communicate what is on his mind. As mentioned previously, use projective techniques to get the child to talk about feelings;

12) The job of the therapist is to recognize the child. This is done by demonstrating to the child that you can “see” him / her;

13) The job of the child is to “remember” that they exist. This will occur through the relationship between the caregiver / therapist and the child. Our job is to help the child to become conscious of himself especially in relationship to others; and finally

14) Do not give up. The child's development is dependent on you to understand his dilemma and to help him to attach.

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Autism on the Rise

Autism: On the rise, but not without help!

Autism is a neurodevelopmental disorder that usually affects children before the age of 3. These children usually have trouble with social interaction, altered communication skills and usually become isolated due to their repetitious interests. Forms of autism can vary in severity. A popular example comes from the Tom Cruise movie, Rainman, where his brother, Dustin Hoffman played an autistic adult. Since the 1990's, according to the National Autism Association, Autism is on the rise. The Center for Disease Control estimates that 1/150 children are diagnosed with a form of autistic behavior. The causes vary from genetic hits, to abnormal blood vessel function, to the increasing popular theory that vaccinations, including the DPT, and more importantly the MMR vaccine was partly to blame. Studies performed by Dr. Andrew Wakefield and researcher, Dr. VK Singh both have produced results implicating the MMR vaccine to increased rates of autism. While the research volume on causation theories is very high, the purpose of this article will shed light on potential treatments that have been found to be very effective in improving the lives of autistic children.

The first step according to the national autism association is to find a doctor, or stable of doctors that have experience with autism. A team of doctors and experts including allopathic, or traditional doctors, chiropractic, and naturopathic practitioners are the most popular forms of treatment for this disorder. The doctors should run diagnostic tests to see what shortcomings the patient has. For example, an Organic Acid test can help detect the presence of yeast or bacterial overgrowth in the patient's stomach. Again, according to the National Autism Association, an overgrowth or change in the normal environment of the stomach can increase “confusion, hyperactivity, short attention span, irritability, and aggression” in automatic children. Antibiotics are normally not recommended for infections if this is occurring, because it will destroy the good bacteria in the stomach. A naturopath, chiropractor or traditional doctor can recommend probiotics, which is a supplement of good bacteria to change the stomach environment. Analysis can also occur with blood or hair analysis. Hair analysis is usually recommended for children under 6 because of the emotional impact that blood withdrawal causes. Vitamin Diagnostics is a lab that the National Autistic Association recommends for testing to assess the needs of a particular individual. Remember, all patients will have different results and different needs, and the navigation for treatment is difficult, because the treatment is not concrete or the same for everyone.

Another important change is gluten free-casein free diet. Gluten can be found in toothpaste, play dough and hidden in many foods. A large percentage of autistic children will respond favorably to this change in diet. Again, back to the diagnostic testing. Your vitamin and mineral supplement should be directly related to the deficiencies found in the lab results. Omega fatty acids, garlic, iron and Vitamin B-6 are among the most popular vitamins and minerals prescribed. Finally, testing for heavy metals is an absolute must. Mercury is a toxic metal that is found in air, water, food, silver fillings. It can even be transmitted from mother to child. According to the CDC, “8 percent of women have blood levels of mercury that exceeded safe amounts”. We normally excrete mercury through hair, urine and feces to name a few, autistic children are known to have difficulties eliminating it. This is where detox agents become effective. Chelation therapy with medicine is popular, but is difficult on the child and the agent is known as a “neurotoxin” according to Dr. Boyd Haley. Ion cleansing has been found to be a very effective method of eliminating heavy metals from the body.

Autism is a topic that has grown in research, and while the topic remains controversial and experimental in it's causes and treatment, two things are generally agreed upon. Pittsburgh School of Medicine has put it bluntly, when they said the brain is reacting differently to sensory input and has poor internal communication. The treatments vary from traditional medicine (chelation), nutritional supplements, cleansing and detox and chiropractic adjustments to aid in the neurological communication. And while the results can be complicated and the treatments need patience from parents of autistic children, there are safe, natural alternatives with proven results.

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