Monthly Archives: September 2018

Accepting An Autism Diagnosis and Helping Your Child Live A “Normal” Life.

 

You give birth to a perfect and healthy baby. You remember the first time you hold your baby in your arms, the first time your baby grabs your finger with their tiny little hands. You remember the first time (s)he imitates something you do, their first word, the first time they give you a big strong hug. Then one day it suddenly stops. Your perfect and healthy child no longer looks you in the eyes, (s)he stairs blankly into space. The words or gestures decrease, your child becomes easily upset and suddenly withdraws from your touch.

As a parent you begin to worry, you take your child to a doctor or specialist and you learn that your perfect and healthy baby has just been diagnosed with autism. To most parents, this diagnosis is shocking. Many times, parents are in denial, blame one another, or withdraw all together, BUT none of it is anyone’s “fault”.

Now that you know your child’s diagnosis, it is time to take the proper steps to make sure that your child on the spectrum is able to live as normal of a life as possible. It is also time for parents to learn how to adjust their lives and their schedule to help their children thrive, and to give themselves a chance to understand, accept and support their child through their stages of development.

Here is some good news! If you saw the signs early on, early intervention will give you and your child on the spectrum a REAL a chance to learn and develop behaviors that will help them interact and communicate with others appropriately throughout their lives. Although no cure exists for autism, many families turn to professionals like those working at Beautiful Minds Center to help them learn and discover methods that leverage the disability’s strengths to improve the lives of everyone affected.

Beautiful Minds Center believes that each child is unique and prides itself on creating individualized programs that best suit the child and their families. They believe that Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA), or the process of applying systematic interventions to improve socially significant behaviors is one of the most impactful ways to educate and work with children that have been diagnosed with autism.

By working with a team of ABA professionals you will help your child on the spectrum processes information and enhance learning in a systematic, scientifically based way that prompts social, communication, and other functional life skills with amazing success.

If you have or know someone who has a child on the autism spectrum who needs therapy to help them reach their maximum potential and enhance their quality of life, then Beautiful Minds Center can help. If you have any questions or concerns about your child’s development go to http://www.beautifulmindscenterforautism.com/contact.htmlto e-mail one of Beautiful Minds Center’s certified behavioral specialists.

No one has to be alone, Beautiful Minds Center has built a community of Board Certified Behavioral Analysts, professional and dedicated therapists, and a staff that will help support you every step of the way.

Teach Your Child Cooperation and Relationship Building Skills

Fall is on its way. What an exciting time filled with exciting activities and incredible social situations!

Help prepare child on the spectrum for working with others, problem solving, and other important social skills in a fun and stress-free way.

When your child, who has been diagnosed with autism, struggles to play with peers or communicate properly with adults, they have a hard time, working with others and making friends.

Learning to play and work with others is a critical skill for developing friendships, completing group projects, and participating in extra-curricular activities. Cooperation skills also build the foundation for more complex social skills.

Here are some fun ways to teach your child on the spectrum the social skills and cooperation skills needed to make friends and work well with others.

Here are some fun activities you can do with our child, who has been diagnosed with autism, that will teach them skills such as waiting, turn taking, and following directions.

  • Cooking– Family cooking activities are a fun way to divide work and practice skills. Start by making a written or pictorial recipe with ingredients and steps presented in order. Assign roles to each family member and practice turn taking, following directions, and sharing responsibility for creating something you can all enjoy later.
  • Gardening – A great way to do a group activity with your child, who has been diagnosed with autism, is to spend the afternoon gardening with them. Whether potting seeds or planting flowers, it is best to assign your child with a specific task that they are responsibly for. Gardening provides the opportunity for continued cooperation and responsibility; and many kids enjoy it.
  • Art– Group art projects such as murals and collages provide the perfect opportunity for dividing work and creating a lasting reminder of cooperation. Select a theme and have your child on the spectrum look for specific pictures in magazines, books, on-line, or whatever resources you have at home. Then give them the responsibility of creating the design for the collage by placing the pictures together in the order they like best, while someone else glues the pictures down. This is a perfect way to practice teamwork.

After your child has developed basic cooperation skills, give them opportunities to use these skills at home, at school and in the community. Encourage your child on the spectrum to use the social skills they have learned to master tasks on their own.

 

 

The Importance of a Consistent Bedtime Routine

Bedtime is difficult for virtually every child. Most children will become upset and some will protest or create distractions just so they don’t have to go to bed. A routine that is positive and consistent can make bedtime more pleasant and less stressful for everyone. Studies have shown both late bedtimes and irregular bedtimes affect children’s behavior at home, in school and in the community. Many children, especially those on the spectrum, need help maintaining a regular schedule and a regular bedtime routine.

 

Beautiful Minds Center has come up with some ways that can help your child, who has been diagnosed with autism, maintain a consistent bedtime routine.

 

1. Be Consistent – setting a time, creating a bedtime routine and sticking to it every day is the most important part of keep a consistent bedtime routine. When your child on the spectrum knows bedtime is at 8:00 every night they can prepare for it by allotting extra time to wind down from their day. The consistency in your child’s bedtime routine will also ensure they are well rested and ready to take on a brand-new day.
2. Plan – Plan ahead for bedtime. Sometimes it can take your child, who has been diagnosed with autism some time to get ready for bed. Give your child time to get into their pajamas, brush their teeth, and read bedtime stories, if children on the spectrum use a visual schedule, include all of the activities leading up to bedtime in the schedule. Some children, who have been diagnosed with autism, may need a reminder before they start their bedtime routine. Setting a timer and preparing your child on the spectrum for transitioning from day to night can also be helpful for reviewing expectations.
3. Make Bedtime Something to Look Forward To – Create a routine that includes quiet and enjoyable activities for your child, who has been diagnosed with autism, and use this as a time to devote your attention fully to your son or daughter. Reading stories and singing songs are wonderful ways to help your child relax before they go to bed.
4. Follow Through – Planning your daily activities in advance and making sure your home before your child’s bedtime ensures your child on the spectrum has consistency and knows what to expect. Changing your child’s bedtime, regular daily routines, and expectations can lead to unnecessary stress. 

 

Everyone benefits from a consistent and positive bedtime routine! Research has shown that a consistent sleep schedule benefits all family members. When children follow a bedtime routine without protest it is less stressful for the entire family.