Learn About Autism
The initial signs of autism may not be noticeable for many parent's, often they go unnoticed until the parent finds themselves struggling to deal with the problem behaviors associated with an Autism Spectrum Disorder. It is important to meet with an appropriate mental health care provider or medical professional to determine if the child has some degree of developmental delay. On our site, you will find a flow chart that can guide you through the diagnostic and intervention process if you are struggling to determine if autism is prevalent with your child.
For parents who have established a diagnosis of an Autism Spectrum Disorder, please contact us for assistance in checking your insurance benefits.
Be aware of the following developmental delays which are among the most common symptoms of autism or related developmental disorders:
- Limited eye contact at 3 months
- Little or no smiling or expressions of joy by 6 months
- A lack of smiles and/or facial expressions by 9 months
- Limited to no babbling by 12 months
- Limited or no gesturing, reaching, pointing, or waving by 12 months
- Very limited or no words by 16 months
- A lack of responding to the child’s name by 10 months
- Loss of speech or babbling, or diminished social skills at any age
- Repetitive movements such as hand flapping
- Devoted to nonfunctional routines or rituals
The symptoms of autism typically appear during the first three years of life, however, early signs may be observed between the ages of 16 to 18 months. Among the most common and difficult challenges are functional language and communication, social interactions, behavior related problems, and play activities.
If your child is suspected to have the above developmental delays, we urge you to seek behavioral services that utilize Applied Behavior Analysis under the supervision of a Board Certified Behavior Analyst.
Early intervention is critical for those children with language delays. Children between the ages of 2-5 are best treated with early intervention. Individuals from age 6 and older would also benefit from intervention, but improvements are best acquired through targeted language, social, behavior, and play skills that utilize the principles of Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) overseen by a board certified professional.
At Rose Street Spectrum, we provide 1:1 ABA interventions, parent training, social skills training, language based programs, and other evidence based therapeutic modalities for children and individuals with an Autism Spectrum Disorder. Additionally, psychiatric evaluation, medication assessment, and family therapy are available when indicated. For more information about ABA and how it can help you, please contact us at (940) 228-5297
As clinicians, we are concerned about the apparent rapid increase in the number of children and adolescents being diagnosed. The most recently published statistics suggested that 1:88 children have been identified as having an ASD.
While the cause is still debated, the American Academy of Pediatrics and the National Institute of Mental Health have recommended and recognized Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) as the only empirically-validated method for the intervention of ASDs. Early intervention gives individuals a greater opportunity to minimize the symptoms of an ASD. Therefore, ABA is considered a vital component to overcoming the symptoms of ASDs such as deficits in language, behavior, and social skills.
Rose Street Spectrum is committed to improving the quality of life for the families and individuals affected by ASDs. Our staff seek to assist parents, teachers, and clinicians alike to consider a variety of treatment options in order to individualize treatment; seeing that no two individuals diagnosed with an ASD are alike.
We seek to work closely with the families to share with them these techniques, in order to maximize treatment benefits and facilitate generalization of language, social, play, potty training, and self-help skills (just to name a few).
We recognize that Autism is a medical disorder first diagnosed by a physician, Leo Kanner, MD over 100 years ago. A board certified child and adolescent psychiatrist is a part of our treatment team to collaborate with you directly, provide age-specific psychiatric assessment, and pharmacotherapy where indicated.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do vaccines cause autism?
We believe that it is critical that parents and pediatricians continue to rely on immunizations to protect all children from potential deadly illnesses. Many of the diseases that can be prevented by vaccines have dangerous consequences such as neurological impairments, blindness, and even death. The research that had led to the assumption that vaccines were associated with autism has been redacted by its authors. The experts at the Center for Disease Control and the American Academy of Pediatrics agree that vaccines were not responsible for recent increases in the number of children with autism or signs of autism.
What medications are typically used to treat autism?
There is not a single drug, natural herb, or special diet that can correct core neurological deficits that appear to cause autism; however, many physicians have discovered that some drugs used to treat other disorders have been effective in treating symptoms associated with autism. Some of these symptoms include aggressive behavior, attentional deficits, and obsessive-compulsive patterns of a child’s behavior that is associated with autism.
What Is Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA)
ABA is the systematic application of the science called Behavior Analysis. ABA therapists use a variety of instructional techniques to improve a person’s behavior and then demonstrate that the procedures used were responsible for the improvement of the behavior. The science of ABA and behavior modification have been evolving since 1938 and are well documented in the professional literature to be an effective teaching method for children diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder.
Since 1977 when Lovaas had determined that ABA was useful in teaching children with autism, the behavioral approach has advanced in sophistication. Although the curriculum published by Lovaas in 1981 (The Me Book: Teaching Developmentally Disabled Children) became the basis for many programs; most ABA programs today have adopted a more contemporary approach to intervention. Contemporary programs incorporate the advances in the science by using integrative approaches of ABA models to suit the needs of the child/family. Models include incidental teaching, social stories/scripts, pivotal response training, social skills training, verbal behavior techniques, and shared control of the teaching interaction (child and adult-initiated interactions) in addition to traditional discrete trial teaching.
What are the goals of ABA?
The overall goal of ABA is to increase appropriate skills (language, social skills, and behaviors) and to decrease inappropriate skills (behaviors). This allows the child to engage in meaningful social interactions, acquire needed skills and function as independently as possible. Typically, teaching begins with the learning readiness skills of sitting, attending and following directions. Once the child has learned to attend, more complex and sophisticated skills are taught in a planned and controlled process.
Who is trained to provide ABA?
People who teach using ABA receive their training from a variety of sources. Seminars, workshops and clinical practice opportunities are available that specialize in ABA and children with autism. Texas currently has no standard certification or licensure for ABA interventionists. Nationally, the (BCBA) Behavior Analyst Certification Board Inc. certifies advanced degree, highly trained persons as Board Certified Behavior Analysts or as Board Certified Associate Behavior Analysts (BCABA).