autism therapy

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    Community Voices

    Using alternative therapy to help with Autism anxiety!

    #AutismAwareness #AutismMeltdowns #AutismTherapy #AutismBlogs #Autism

    When I first took my son for craniosacral therapy I never knew how much it would help him but also how much it would help me! I had no idea what craniosacral therapy was or how it could help but I was willing to give it a try. The practitioner explained that it was a way of working with the body using light touch which supports your body’s innate ability to balance, restore and heal itself. The first thought I had was he is never going to let you touch him in a million years so how is this going to work! She just sat down and let him be himself. He ran back and forth, stimming and giggling to himself just as if she wasn’t there. I felt the energy in the room change, I can’t explain it but it seemed calmer. After 20 mins or so Joe had stopped running and climbed onto the bed like he knew what to do – it’s the strangest feeling in the world to witness something you cannot physically see! We had weekly sessions after that for about 6 weeks and every week he would do the same, stim and run and then eventually calm down.
    I started noticing changes in him almost immediately, the most obvious change was that he was less anxious. This meant that I could get him to do different things with less of a struggle. He started being able to control his emotions better, I’m not saying he doesn’t have tantrums because he still does, but he can bring himself out of them. I see the range of emotion before my eyes, anger, grief, acceptance all in about 5 minutes.
    This is a boy that only ate ham sandwiches (minus the ham) at school but now eats a variety of foods, even bean wraps. We now have conversations about his day, what he did, what he ate, etc it’s amazing. Only a special needs mum (or dad) knows the desperation of wanting that connection with their child. I remember the first day it happened. I picked Joe up from school asking him lots of question and anticipating his ‘no more’ response, but that day was different, that day he answered me, I continued to ask questions trying to stop the tears rolling down my face. It was one of the happiest times of my life!
    Therapy hasn’t just helped Joe, it has helped me see that if I believe something can happen it will. As parents, we are so afraid of what might happen that we let our fear take over and this has an impact on our body too! Letting go of that fear in the sessions calmed my inner turmoil and allowed me to shift my mindset and it’s made a massive difference.
    We still go for therapy once a month, it is making a real difference to Joe. He has finally landed and I couldn’t be more proud!

    Community Voices
    Community Voices

    Has anyone benefitted from therapy to alleviate anxiety around potential loud/popping sounds, ie balloons, etc?

    3 people are talking about this
    Community Voices

    My husband and I are butting heads about ABA therapy. Is it helpful or harmful? In which ways? #AutismTherapy

    Our son is 5 and has not had any therapy since his in home therapy before he started ECSD preschool. Now he’s mainstreamed in kindergarten. I’m worried he’s going to continue to fall behind his peers. My husband thinks (from what he’s read) that ABA therapy is too aggressive and can cause more harm than good. Looking for opinions from those on the spectrum. #Autism

    2 people are talking about this

    OrbisBox 'Hugging Machine' Provides Pressure to People With Autism

    A Denmark-based company is bringing to market a deep-pressure device aimed at soothing the sensory issues of those on the autism spectrum. The so-called “hugging machine,” originally conceived by renowned autism advocate Temple Grandin, has been dubbed OrbisBox by manufacturer Gloria Mundi Care. The device allows users to lie on their front, side or back while being squeezed by foam-covered panels inside the box. These panels gently close in on the user at adjustable pressure levels. The OrbisBox can also provide light and sound therapy via color-changing panels that make up its walls and wired-in Bose speakers. OrbisBox’s goal is to help a person who has difficulty processing sensory information. Those on the spectrum are often either hypersensitive to sensory stimuli or experience minimal responses to the same information. When someone on the spectrum is overwhelmed by too many senses, it can sometimes result in a sensory overload meltdown. A device like this may help in these situations. The OrbisBox is on wheels and about the height and width of a refrigerator, with a depth of about 7 feet to accommodate a person lying down. It retails commercially for about $51,400 USD but can be purchased for personal use. Mighty contributor –>, who is on the autism spectrum, said the price of the machine would deter people from using it. “The cost alone would limit the number of autistic people who may benefit from its use because it will alienate an entire economic class from having access to it,” Hardwick said. He also expressed concern about the efficacy of the OrbisBox in actually comforting users. “The ability to control the machine takes away one of the most important aspects of ‘stimming,’” Hardwick said. “In theory, self-stimulation by individuals with autism works because it is self-regulating. With little to no actual control over the function of the machine, I’m concerned that the results will fall short.” The Mighty wants to know: Would you try the OrbisBox? Explain why or why not in the comment section below.

    Cathy B
    Cathy B @cathyb63
    contributor

    Worrying I'm Not Doing Enough for My Son With Autism

    Right around the time my son Dominic was diagnosed with autism at 2 and a half years old, I became friends with a gal who had a daughter on the spectrum. The more I got to know her, the more I realized she and I had different ways ofhelping our children. While she was a very nice person, she was using what I considered a “controversial” therapy on her daughter. I won’t go into specific details, but let’s just say it made me uncomfortable. Needless to say, we have lost touch with each other. When we decided to put Dominic on Ritalin after he was diagnosed with Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) at age 3, it was a really, really hard decision. I remember crying. I had a lot of doubts about putting him on the medication a such a young age. But, we saw such great results shortly after; he still remains on it to this day. I know not all parents would agree with our decision, but it is our choice. Sadly, even within the special needs community there are parents who feel the need to judge other parents on how they are raising their children or the choices they make. An encounter with another special needs mom who challenged me after I told her what we were doing for Dominic at the time is eternally etched in my mind. She told me, “That’s it? that’s all you are doing?” I was so stunned by her rudeness that I had to walk away from her. It would be wonderful if one therapy worked for every single child with autism, wouldn’t it? That is not the case. What works for one child, might not work for another, and that can make it extremely difficult to know what is the “best” therapy to try. Since Dominic is terrified of large animals, I know “hippotherapy,” a therapy using horses wouldn’t be a good “fit” for him. I try really, really hard to not pass judgment on what therapies other parents use for their children with special needs because I wouldn’t want someone to pass judgment on me. From time to time, I think of my friend who has the daughter with autism. Her daughter was talking and reading well before Dominic. I think sometimes, What if I used the same therapy my friend used? Would he be further along than he is? I guess I could spend all day feeling “guilty” for not trying a certain therapy that could help him face a challenge, but that would be counterproductive, wouldn’t it? I focus my efforts instead on what we are doing for him each day. I love what Dominic’s private speech therapist told me at the end of one of his sessions several months ago. She said, “I have high expectations for Dominic.” We do too. He has already surpassed many “hurdles” since his diagnoses, and I know there will be challenges ahead on this special needs road. But I know in my heart when I put my head down on my pillow to go to sleep each night, I have done the best that I can for Dominic, and that is enough. Follow this journey on Bountiful Plate.