Posts Tagged ‘pervasive developmental disorder’

Treatment for autism

Wednesday, April 21st, 2010

Autism Spectrum Disorder is a pervasive developmental disorder, and as yet there is still no known cure for autism, however there are many treatments.


Some help manage the symptoms of Autism Spectrum Disorder, while others address the social, behavioural and communication difficulties associated with this pervasive developmental disorder. Of all the available autism treatments any claiming to be a cure for autism is simply not so.


There are many different theories surrounding the “cause of autism” and as yet no one theory has proven conclusive, research into the cause of autism and the symptoms of autism is still on-going.


There are many different types of therapies and autism treatments developed specifically to alleviate symptoms of Autism Spectrum Disorders.


A diagnosis of autism is not the end of the world, with the available therapies and treatment for autism it is expected that children with autism have the opportunity to reach his or her full potential.


Probably one of the most significant treatment for autism is social stories, a social story will address communication difficulties help build social skills, interaction and imagination skills as well as encourage appropriate behaviours.


We all need a certain amount of social and communication skills to be able to function daily. With autism the ability to learn social and communication skills is missing, however using a treatment for autism like social stories this lack of naturally learnt skills and behaviours can be addressed successfully.

Typically developing children learn through the environment and their family and peers, the child with ASD wont, therefore direct teaching is necessary.  Using social stories as a strategy for improving and teaching social skills to your child with ASD is simple, no qualifications or formal training is needed, social stories are simple to use and very effective.


The symptoms of autism vary between individuals, however all autistic’s tend to be visual thinkers and learners. Therefore social stories were developed to be visual, much like a visual framework of the skill or behaviour being addressed.


For many parents probably the most significant difficulty they struggle with is their child’s communication difficulties, for most children with autism language is confusing and often they do not understand what is expected of them. Much like if you were dropped in a foreign country, chances are you would not understand what people were saying, however if they showed you a picture chances are you would catch on pretty fast. This is the same with autism visual images and pictures trigger understanding much quicker that the spoken or written word.



For example a parent struggling to make their child understand may talk more trying to explain, this is not going to work with a child with ASD, the answer is to talk less and use visual cues prompts. For example show them a picture of the toilet, dinner etc rather than speak they will understand a lot quicker and with less stress for the both of you.


Using social stories as a strategy uses this knowledge; a social story is a visual representation with minimal text, always in first person language that describes the skill or behaviour from the point of view of the autistic individual.


The social story breaks the situation down into small pieces and each piece of the skill for example going to recess is represented by an image and text describing the “wh” questions (who, where, when, why and what) as well as what the child with ASD may expect from others and what they will expect back from them. This will help the autistic individual feel more comfortable and in control which will reduce anxieties and stress.


To learn more about this treatment for autism and how using social stories as a strategy can help your child with ASD visit any of the following sites: