Early intervention for children with autism effective for many reasons
It is important to provide early intervention and diagnoses of autism for children. It helps them to improve their skills and become more independent in life. Experts point out the many ways in which this can improve the overall development of a child.
Over the years, experts have pointed out why early intervention and diagnoses for autism is important. Autism affects the social and communication skills of a child. By providing the right therapies, the child can have a better quality of life. If provided with the right guidance, parents and caregivers can make a huge difference.
Importance of diagnosis
Unlike earlier days, parents are becoming more aware of autism. Earlier, autism was considered to be a mental disability. Those children with autism were side-lined in the society. But the good news is, times are changing. Though the society still has a long way to go in understanding about autism, they are getting there slowly. More people are researching on autism and doing detailed studies on it. Autism can be detected as early as 18 months. So parents must be careful and look out for the child during their growing years.
Seema Lal, co-founder of TogetherWeCan, a parent support group says that early intervention is extremely important.
Early intervention is seen as something done post a diagnoses. However, a diagnoses is what comes in the way of early intervention as parents go through shock, denial and so on which is a crucial waste of time. If only professionals focus more on equipping parents to work with their child on basic child development skills without so much pressure on accepting a diagnosis, a lot of intervention will start early. We are still dependent on a medical model that assesses children and box them into checklists, scores and percentages. This must change- Seema Lal.
Importance of early intervention for autism
The overall development of a child can be improved with early intervention. One of the main challenges faced by children with autism is difficulty in social and language skills. They find it hard to become a part of mainstream society due to many reasons. So by detecting a developmental delay at an early stage, parents can offer children with right therapies.
Needs and requirements of every child with autism is different. Parents can recognise them at do the needful only with help and guidance of experts. That is yet another reason why they must approach experts to identify autism.
A recent study done by a group of researchers in the United States of America focuses on the importance of doing early intervention at the age of 14 months.
Grace Santosh is a Chennai based psychologist. She has a son with autism. “Fourteen months is a good time to screen a child for autism. It can prevent certain challenging behaviours, help them to teach required skills, and support them to go out to the community and experience things. All children must have such experience to make them more self-reliant and independent. When you do screening at such a young age, it helps to bring out the best in them in future as well”.
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