There are many different types of Autism spectrum therapies and treatments that aim to increase and decrease behaviors related to Autism Spectrum Disorder. When searching for specific therapies, the most important thing for parents to know is that early intervention is key. Starting any type of Autism treatment as early as possible can help give your child the best possible chance at success. You should begin your search for different therapies as soon as you have the thought that your child MAY have Autism. Waiting for a formal diagnosis is often a lengthy process and it is much better to be proactive and get as early of an intervention as possible than waiting and possibly missing out on those critical first few years.
It is also important that there is no “one size fits all” combination of therapies for a child with Autism. Every child on the spectrum has vastly different needs and therefore will need different types of interventions. The following is a list and brief overview of the different therapies that are available for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder.
Applied Behavior Analysis
Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) is an evidence-based Autism spectrum therapy and is one of the most common types of therapeutic interventions for individuals on the Autism spectrum. Early intervention is especially important for children who are fortunate enough to be diagnosed early (around two years old). ABA therapy involves the use of positive and negative reinforcement through rewards and praise to help a child learn new skills. Parents and caregivers also receive training to allow the child to continue making progress at home. ABA therapy typically occurs anywhere from 10 to 30 hours per week depending on the child’s specific needs.
There are many different teaching methods within ABA, these include:
- Discrete trial training (DTT). This breaks a desired behavior into the simplest steps.
- Early intensive behavioral intervention (EIBI). This form of ABA is designed for young children, usually under age five.
- Pivotal response treatment (PRT). The focus here is on important areas of a child’s development, like self-management and taking charge in social situations.
- Verbal behavior intervention (VBI). Improving a child’s verbal skills is the goal.
For more information on ABA therapy or to find an ABA provider you can do a quick Google search for “aba therapy Bergen County “or” aba therapy near me”.
Floortime (Play Therapy)
Play is a great way for children with Autism to communicate and connect with others. Floortime involves a clinician getting down on the floor or playing at a table with a child on the child’s terms. The clinician will play the same way that the child is playing to try and encourage communication and add new forms of play to their existing “play-repertoire”. The goal of play therapy is to help children grow emotionally and learn how to focus on their thinking.
Joint attention symbolic play engagement and regulation (JASPER)
The goal of JASPER is to improve what therapists call “joint attention or joint engagement,” which is when an adult and a child both focus on the same thing while doing an activity together. When parents and children focus on the same things during play, it creates more opportunities for communication and allows the adult to enter the child’s world by focusing on what most interests the child; the adult can also then imitate the child’s actions and reinforce how fun play can be (Gulsrud et al., 2015, p. 6).
Occupational Therapy (OT)
Occupational therapy helps with daily living activities and the use of everyday objects, like learning to put on clothes or hold and use a spoon. Occupational therapy can involve anything related to school, work, or play. The focus depends on a child’s specific needs. The goal of occupational therapy is to help people with autism improve their quality of life. The therapist helps introduce, maintain and improve skills so people with autism can be as independent as possible.
Many individuals with autism have difficulty producing speech sounds and this makes communicating very difficult. Children with autism may not speak at all, utter sounds, hum or talk in a musical-like way, babble, echo what others are saying, or use robotic sounding speech. Speech therapy can help will all of these things! Speech therapy can help children with both speaking and communicating with others. Many speech therapists also focus on using nonverbal skills like making eye contact, having conversations, and understanding gestural communication. Some speech therapists also use alternative forms of communication like PECS (picture exchange communication system) or a communication system on a tablet. It is recommended that children start speech therapy as early as possible to promote the best possible outcome.
Meet the Experienced ABA Therapists at Capable Cubs ABA Therapy Center in Bergen County
At Capable Cubs, we believe that selecting an ABA therapy center near you is an incredibly critical decision with lasting consequences. As a leading ABA services provider in Bergen County, we encourage parents to always ask questions and evaluate our services and therapists without any hesitation.
Our team of highly trained ABA clinicians includes experienced and qualified BCBAs and RBTs who specialize in combining various ABA methods for providing the most effective treatment to your child with ASD. We create a structured roadmap for every child, including extensive initial assessments, comprehensive ABA treatment plans, critical learning milestones and effective discharge plans to successfully transition out of our care. Our goal is to help your child build the skills needed to increase independence, build meaningful relationships, and connect with their community.
Select an ABA therapy center that works best for your family’s priorities, needs, and goals. Get in touch with the Autism specialists at Capable Cubs. Call 201-786-6280 or contact us online to learn more about our quick intake process.