There are many things a parent can do to help their child with Autism to overcome their challenges. While it is helpful to receive as much help from your doctor, these tips will help smooth the challenges you will face along the way.
Here are eight tips on helping your child with autism maximise their potential.
1. Don’t Wait for a Diagnosis
As a parent of a child with autism, the best thing you can do for your child and family is to start treatment right away. Seek out help as soon as you suspect that something may be wrong or a little off. Don’t wait years to see if your child with “outgrow” the problem and let is resolved on its own. The most efficient way to keep your child’s development is up to speed and reduces the negative symptoms of autism.
2. Go the Extra Mile
You may think that your child is somehow hiding their gifts, even if it is blocked by confusion and challenges. Go for the extraordinary and don’t define your defined by the challenges of autism. They will grow out of those challenges as you will slowly fix together and move on.
Don’t aim for the ordinary, as individuals with autism are capable of exceptional creativity. Take joy in their strengths rather than focus on their vulnerable weaknesses.
3. Understand what you can control and what you can’t
Our set of genes is all we are born with, but that doesn’t mean you have it make it your entire life. The power of genes is shaped by the environment we live. Your goal must be to create a support environment that is nourishing for you and your loved ones.
In fact, join your child’s world and search for the hidden answers behind what they do. Learn to decode your child’s signals and find ways to communicate in ways they understand. Be sure to take it slowly and teach them simple things that may come naturally to others without autism.
Learning what you can and can’t control will allow you to join their world and love them unconditionally.
4. Create a home safety zone
Create a private space when your child can feel relaxed, secure and safe. This involves the use of organisation, setting up boundaries and ways on how your child can feel comfortable. Use visual cues to safety proof the home, especially if your child is prone to tantrums.
5. Be consistent
Children with autism often struggle with applying what they learned in a single setting, including the home. Create consistency within the environment and reinforce what they’ve learned. Consider the options of having therapy in more than one setting. It is important to be consistent in how you interact with your child and deal with their behaviours.
6. Stick to routine
Children with autism tend to excel when they have a structured daily schedule. This continues with consistency as children thrive on a schedule with regular meal times, therapy, school time, play time and bed time. Try to avoid disruptions that will affect the routine.
If there is something that is unavoidable, be sure to prepare your child well in advance as much as possible.
7. Reward positive behaviour
Using positive reinforcement can go a long way in children with autism. Make an effect to see them do something good and praise them when they act appropriately. Look for new ways to reward them for their good behaviour, such as letting play with a new toy or getting a sticker.
8. Make time for fun
A child coping with autism is still, just a child. Make time for playtime and fun when your child is most awake and alert. Figure out ways to have a good time and will make your child come out of their shell. There is a wide array of benefits that result from the company of your child’s enjoyment.
Playtime should be an essential part of learning. It should not feel like a challenging task.
As a parent of a child with autism, be sure to get involved with your child’s IEP from the beginning to the end. Learn to look at autism as a type of development rather than something that is destined. Be aware of all the sensory sensitivities your child may have. Some kids with autism are sensitive to light, touch, sound, taste, and smell.
What other things have you done to help your child with autism maximise their full potential? Comment below and let us know what you think!