Also, what do children learn in ABA/IBI therapy?
My son will be four in April, and after two meetings with a developmental paediatrician and six months in an integrated nursery program for kids with delays, the paediatrician is recommending ADOS assessment for Autism.
Of course Im scared, and i suspect that he is on the spectrum, and i also suspect he is on the high functioning end of the spectrum (I'm no expert, its just what i suspect)
My sons program ends in late June so I'm trying to figure out what type of therapy to provide for him in the summer months. I have no idea when the assessment will occur, so i thought id go ahead and start planning. Of course speech therapy is something I'm considering, he is behind in speech and still "echoes"
Thank for any information
The ADO testing has a series of items designed to test interactive play and responsiveness. For example, they released the air from a balloon, and saw if the child engages jointly with the tester about its "flight" They asked social questions and checked responses.
The test alone won't determine the diagnosis though. The history the doctor takes will be important too. For example, with my son the doctor was particularly sure that early childhood things mattered a lot. His not pointing, or not waving much, using my hands as tools to get what he wanted, and lining up toys were indicators. These early things I hadn't thought much about were apparently a key to getting an idea what was going on. In my child's case there was also a teacher questionnaire, and she was the one who noted many things consistent with being on the high end of the spectrum.
ABA will be geared to teaching the specific skills your child is lacking. My son learns lots of things from following basic directions to play language to appropriate social commenting. It is also a positive proactive approach to approaching behavioral challenges, if the arise.
It can feel daunting, but the earlier you get a good idea what is happening; the earlier you can make a plan to treat it. The work I did with the help of professionals when my son was 4-6 makes a big difference in his daily ability to join and play with others today. And you may live in a state with an autism law (ours passed when my son was 6); and be able to get a lot of help and support for him, if he is on the spectrum.
I feel very fortunate I got him into treatment at 4-5 years old. He did an extra year of pre-k in the morning with autism support and then I did therapies at home or in the community with him in the afternoon.
Without that he would have not be able to be in the mix as much as he is. He still is out of the mainstream at times, but has so many lovely moments of connection and being part of things also.
Good luck to you...Deep breathes, and don't worry too much. Whatever they say, he will always be that same baby you held in your arms, the same child you adore today.
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