Autism is one of the most misunderstood and isolating mental disorders people can live with. Although not every person with autism has the same symptoms or has their daily life disabled by it, many find the disorder as something that adds stress, anxiety, and depression into their lives. Applied behavioral analysis is a type of therapy for children and young adults to help them work through their symptoms at a younger age. This type of treatment is often seen as the gold star treatment for those with autism, offering them the chance to get used to their symptoms.
What is ABA Therapy?
ABA therapy is an intensive therapy that works on growing social skills, putting in place healthy coping mechanisms, and giving people with autism the chance to live lives with less stress. This therapy works by trying to correct and change behaviors that may make life harder for children with autism and give them actions to replace them. It’s not trying to change their personality or ‘fix’ the children; it’s working to help them gain the tools that autism makes it hard for them to access.
Can I Continue Using These Systems At Home?
Yes! Most clinics that offer ABA therapy offer guides for how families can use these therapies at home. Of course, you shouldn’t make any massive life changes without your child’s therapist or doctor’s say. A poorly put in place attempt at ABA could hurt or upset the child and make their symptoms worse. Your child must get the chance to have a healthy and well-planned version of ABA before you try and enact any of these changes at home. Many parents aren’t ready for the massive life changes and challenges that come from undertaking this alone- doctors and medical professionals are your support system, and you should use them.
What Are The Benefits?
The best thing ABA therapy can offer is a chance for your child to live a less stressful life. There’s no ‘cure’ for autism and no way to take away all of the stresses they have to deal with in life, but careful and thoughtful planning can allow them to live an experience they’ll be happy with. ABA therapy is a support system to help them navigate the world in a safer and more tailored way.
Does It Last For Life?
Autism is a fluid disorder that can change and grow over time. Unfortunately, there’s no way to tell how a person’s specific condition will act in five to ten years. Although we can try to predict how behaviors will grow and morph, it’s more important to try to put coping mechanisms to help the person with autism learn to grow and adapt to these changes. A lot of what they learn through ABA therapy will help them navigate the world and their symptoms. This plan is the best attempt you can make to establish lifelong systems of coping.