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We Help You, Help Your Child. If you have a child with autism, you probably face many difficulties when you are seeking to make your child’s life as fulfilling as possible. You dream of getting to spend time with your child in a fun, engaging, and creative way, while simultaneously trying to reduce the behavior that is troubling and potentially dangerous.
According to World Health Organization, one in 160 children is diagnosed with the autism spectrum disorder (ASD). The number of children diagnosed with ASD has been steadily increasing, which has led parents to seek out the best therapeutic approach. Research has show that one of the most successful treatments is ABA therapy. Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA) is the most common treatment for people diagnosed with autism. How does it work?
This treatment is carried out by therapists who carefully observe a child with autism, documenting his/her behaviors and conducting interviews with the parents, and others who have an important role in the child’s life. After collecting the information, an applied behavioral therapist eventually creates an ABA treatment plan. An ABA treatment plan refers to numerous procedures that are created to improve overall behaviors, teach new skills, and reduce behaviors that hamper effective participation in a traditional educational environment. This type of therapy typically includes 40 hours of one-on-one personalized therapy, designed to treat specific skill deficits such as classroom competence or speech problems. ABA therapy consists of breaking down skills into simple, achievable steps, so a child with autism can learn that skill in a form that is easier to understand and manage.
Parental involvement is crucial for ABA treatment success. Parents work alongside therapists and teachers to identify the behaviors that their child should change and address skills that can be taught. Parents also have another important role when it comes to ABA treatment – after working with a therapist for a certain number of hours, that child continues working on skill building and behavioral activities with his/her parent. To ensure that parents are given the tools needed to work with their child, ABA treatment includes teaching the parents of a child with autism new skills that will help them to continue the work done by the therapist. This type of engagement between a parent and their child is valuable and builds an important connection that lasts. ABA treatment is a source of hope that can better the lives of families challenged with ASD.
In the world of autism, ABA treatment is widely accepted because it has showed great results. A well known study done by Ivar O. Lovaas in 1987, highlighted the results of a number of families who had a child with autism and participated in an ABA therapy program. His study showed that 90% of those families saw a significant improvement in their child’s behavior after only a few years and sometimes a few months. This is consistent with the experience of many families participating in ABA therapy, who celebrate seeing their child mainstreamed into a traditional classroom setting. This model is based on a system of positive and negative reinforcements, in order to amplify appropriate behaviors and discourage inappropriate ones. Social skills are broken down into separate, learnable units. Hand-washing, for example, would be taught as a series of steps — turning on the faucet, using the soap, drying the hands — and mastered individually.
Eventually, as an outcome of the training, the child with autism might progress from learning a simple task, like sitting quietly in a chair, to more difficult ones, like making eye contact and, ultimately, speaking freely and intelligibly. Raising a child with autism can be an incredible and challenging labor of love. Through Hidden Treasures” caring application of ABA Therapy, we help families with autism “Discover the Treasure Within”.
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