Monthly Archives: December 2019

Children and Teens With Autism: Why Social Events and Parties Are Hard for Them

Socializing and going to parties help children with autism spectrum disorder improve their social and communication skills. However, most social events can be tough to handle for them. The best way to help your children progressively develop their social skills is by planning everything with time.

Reasons why holiday events can be difficult for children with ASD

  • Children with autism have problems with communication and social interaction
  • They find it difficult to wait, organize, or solve unexpected situations
  • They are easily overwhelmed by their surroundings
  • They are disturbed by noise, screams, and loud music

That said, if we apply the right strategy, parties and meetings can be a great opportunity for them to develop their communication and social skills.

Planning social events with your child within the spectrum

Taking your child with ASD to a social event is not mandatory. Do what you consider convenient and what you can both handle. Plan every detail to help your kid feel comfortable and confident.

Strategies to prepare children for the event

  • Tell them a story about a party. Focus the story on a specific theme, for example, respect for turns, or how to behave when someone wins a game
  • Exchange roles with your child. For example, represent a scene about how to greet others, how to get to the place, etc
  • Show them videos of parties. There are plenty of videos on YouTube showing common behaviors at social events. This is called video modeling
  • Plan the supervision of your child with your partner or ask a trusted family member to help you
  • Make an emergency plan if the child starts feeling overwhelmed. You can take him/her for a walk or accompany him to a quiet place
  • Take a “support kit” that contains all his/her favorite toys, books, and food in case of a crisis.

Development of skills to help your child with autism manage social events

Over time, children with ASD can learn many skills, such as:

  • Teamwork
  • Respecting others’ turn
  • Sharing
  • Being patient and calm
  • Accepting losing a game

These will help them enjoy the holidays and learn how to interact in all kinds of social events and even at school.

How can you help them develop these skills?

There are many ways to help children with autism improve their social skills:

  • Tell them stories about social events. This strategy will show them how to behave and what to expect at parties
  • Practice losing in different games. This way, you can teach them there is nothing wrong with losing sometimes
  • Teach them to say “good job, you win” and “congratulations”

Tips for organizing a party for children with ASD

  • Plan the event with a clear and precise structure
  • Use a decoration with something your child likes or based on his/her special interests
  • Try to avoid unstructured games
  • Avoid anything that could distress your child. For example, don’t play loud music at the party if it bothers him/her
  • Ask other family members for help if he/she gets angry or has a crisis
  • Make sure adults attending the event know what to do to help your child in case of an uncomfortable situation

Having children with ASD doesn’t necessarily mean that your social life and theirs is over. On the contrary, if you prepare the parties or reunions with enough time, these events can be very useful to improve their social skills and teach them how to appropriately relate to others.

 

family gathering

Help your child or teen with autism to face the social events and parties of the holidays.

Source: http://bit.ly/2Y525yr

 

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How to Prepare a Holiday Family Gathering for Your Teen with Autism?

Christmas Eve is a perfect occasion for the whole family to gather at a relative’s house and celebrate the holidays. Parents of a teenager within the autistic spectrum and other family members may go through difficult situations, insecurities, and concerns about his or her adaptation to these kinds of events.

But the parents of a child with autism should always be prepared to face new challenges. Christmas meetings can be tough, especially if a family member who has problems accepting your child’s condition is present.

In this post, we show all the aspects you should keep in mind, so your family reunion is pleasant for everyone.

First of all, adapt your ideas for the festivity to the characteristics, behaviors, and individual needs of your child. This way, you’ll be able to make the best decision and minimize the anxiety and preoccupation of everyone involved.

Prepare for the reunion

The important thing is to prepare in advance for that family gathering, but how to do so? Here’s a couple of tips:

Use family stories

Teens within the spectrum aren’t fans of changes or surprises, they are routine lovers. Tell them a family story and explain in detail how Christmas gatherings usually go. Show them photos from previous years where they can see all the family members.

Strengthen their coping skills

Teach your children to be patient and wait for their turn to speak and participate, respect others, and anything that can be useful for learning self-management.

Help them avoid a sensory overload

Generally, everyone dresses formally for a family reunion, and this can cause discomfort in teenagers with autism. It is better to dress in casual and comfortable clothes that don’t cause too much visual impact on them.

Loud music can also trigger a desire to leave the place. Take some earphones with you and let them listen to their favorite music. The same can apply to food if they don’t like the dishes. In this case, try to cook or gently ask the host if he can make their favorites.

Teach them how to behave during dinner

Evaluate your children’s behavior and try to determine if they are truly ready to share dinner with other people. If not, accompany them and eat in a separate place of the house while the rest of the family is in the dining room.

Prepare the whole family

Expose to your family your child’s growth, progress, and achievements, in addition to those issues that may need to put some attention on. Promote communication between them through phone calls, emails, and social media.

Locate a space inside the house where your child can take a break and have a quiet moment under your supervision. Talk to the host about available spaces. If there is none, you can go for a walk to try and calm your child down.

There are also people within your family who can provide support. Contact them before the family reunion, tell them how to help you in case your teen has a crisis.

But sometimes things don’t go es expected. If the situation gets out of control, it is better to engineer an elegant exit plan.

 

family

Holidays are the perfect time to gather as a family, but the crowd and the noises can be a lot for your teen with autism.

Source: http://bit.ly/2Y6Lf25

 

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Regalos de Navidad para niños con autismo

Seguramente para estas fechas ya tengas planeado ir a comprar el regalo de Navidad para tu niño con autismo, pero puede que al momento de adquirirlo se te presenten algunas dudas sobre cuál pueda ser el obsequio ideal para él.

Recuerda que sólo tú conoces al pequeño y sabes lo que le gusta y lo que no. Analiza todos estos elementos y procede a elegir el mejor regalo de acuerdo a sus preferencias. Examina cómo se comporta tu niño y cuáles son sus sensibilidades, de esta forma podrás elegir el presente más idóneo para la Navidad.

Peluches y juegos propioceptivos

Si tu niño es de los que les encanta las guerras de almohadas, dormir y saltar entre grandes cojines o le gusta cargar objetos pesados de un lugar a otro, sería conveniente estimular su sentido propioceptivo. ¿De qué se trata esto? De estimular todo aquello relacionado con la sensibilidad y el sistema nervioso, es decir, la información que proviene de los músculos, articulaciones y la masa ósea.

Una manta para dormir o un peluche felposo son agradables obsequios para quienes juegan todo el año a las escondidas debajo de las sábanas y las almohadas. Los juegos para armar y construir al estilo de Lego son ideales para niños que les encantan los objetos pesados. También puedes utilizar  tacos de madera de diferentes colores.

A los niños les encanta construir torres enormes con varios peldaños para luego derribarlas y observar de cerca el efecto dominó. Después de la Navidad estos juguetes pueden ser utilizados como recursos pedagógicos y lúdicos para la enseñanza de los colores y los números. Este tipo de estrategia está dirigida especialmente a niños de un año.

Juegos para desarrollar las habilidades sociales

Los niños con autismo tienen dificultades para entender el lenguaje corporal de las demás personas. Incluso las expresiones faciales son a veces difíciles de interpretar. Por eso es recomendable enseñarles que fruncir el ceño significa que estamos enfadados, dudosos o sorprendidos.

Si tu niño presenta esta debilidad especial, hay juegos que sirven para abordar esta temática, como los Emotiblocks, por ejemplo, que ayudan con las habilidades sociales y las emociones. En cada bloque hay una carita que reproduce y expresa un tipo de  sentimiento o emoción.

También se pueden utilizar como una eficaz estrategia de aprendizaje los dibujos del juego “Pupitre magnético de las emociones”. Por medio de este se pueden conocer los tipos de emociones y sentimientos de las personas.

 Juegos para autorregularse

Los comportamientos de autorregulación como morder, correr, tocar objetos, masticar, balancearse y girar, entre otros, son fundamentales para niños y niñas. Para contribuir a este equilibrio puedes regalarle un accesorio para morder.

Si al niño le gusta el balanceo corporal puedes seleccionar juguetes que estimulen el sentido vestibular, como las hamacas o peonzas. Balancearse surte un efecto relajante en el niño y calma sus niveles de hiperactividad y agitación. Si el pequeño sufre hipersensibilidad auditiva podrías sorprenderlo con un casco antiruido para prevenir incomodidades al encontrarse en un ambiente ruidoso.

 

medias rojas y regalos

Los chicos con autismo son muy sensibles y algunos obsequios pueden causarles molestias. Te enseñamos cuáles son los mejores regalos para ellos.

Fuente: http://bit.ly/2Y4gj2y

 

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Teens with Autism: Self-Esteem and Self-Identity

Adolescence is a decisive stage full of turbulent moments due to the physical and psychological changes young people experience. For this reason, the development of self-esteem and self-identity is extremely important for achieving greater confidence and feeling comfortable in this modern society.

Being different is what makes us special

Explain to your children in a casual conversation that all people are different, and that is what makes each of us unique and unrepeatable. Every human being is valuable and interesting for their peculiarities.

Help them see themselves as a valued and active part of society. You can also help them understand that people around can see, talk, think, and act in many ways.

Tell them that people are free to think and act differently, and we must accept it.

Kids within the autism spectrum may feel different from others at school because, in many cases, their classmates make them feel that way. Tell your child that no one in the world is completely equal to another and that he or she should not pay attention to others’ mean comments.

Getting to know others

Allow your children to join activities that they like, such as a sports club, a painting group, or a band. This will allow them to realize each of their strengths, discover what they like to do, and find a place where they feel safe.

This way, they will develop social skills by sharing with others who aren’t within the spectrum. In turn, it will be a great practice to start interacting with all kinds of people.

But promote activities in which they can share with other children with autism as well. Getting involved with people within the spectrum can help them understand more about their condition and the different ways in which it can affect people.

Sharing experiences with an audience that understands their situation is also helpful. The State Autism Association and the local council may recommend some local groups. These agencies are responsible for providing information on the places where children can meet others of the same age and condition.

Thinking about me

Encourage your children to explore their interests and discover what they love and what they don’t. Talk about the positive aspects of their personalities, for example, their good manners, generosity, solidarity, tolerance, among others. Also, ask them how they would describe themselves.

An effective strategy for kids to express what they think about themselves is teaching them how to write a journal. You could call it “All about me” and include photos of all the activities your children like and entries about their achievements.

Teens within the autism spectrum remember past events better through images, photos, and other documents. For example, school reports can help them remember their triumphs at school.

Knowing about the family

To help your children develop their self-identity, you should show them photographs of family members, build a family tree, and explain to them where their last names come. Tell them how the experience of watching them grow up to become teenagers has been for you.

If your children don’t have the support of their friends or classmates, let them know that their family will always be there for them, no matter the circumstances.

 

girl teen

Check out the importance of self-esteem and self-identity for the teens with autism.

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Boys with Autism: Take Care of Your Body!

Puberty brings many physical and psychological changes that are difficult to handle, especially for teens with autism. Our responsibility as parents is to teach our children how to take care of their bodies during this stage. Here we show you the best way to educate your child with autism in all aspects related to the care and hygiene of the body.

The first thing you have to explain to an adolescent within the spectrum is why he needs to take care of his body. It is important to use a simple language according to his age and level of autism, so he can understand the changes he will experience as he grows and develops.

Let him know that as we age, our bodies change until we become adults. This transition from boy to man is what we call puberty. When it arrives, it will bring changes like:

  • Oily skin and hair.
  • Facial hair growth (beard).
  • Sweat will have a stronger and more penetrating smell, especially in the area under the arms.
  • The voice becomes deeper.
  • Frequent erections, ejaculation, and wet dreams.

This process is biological and natural. It happens to all men when they grow up. The changes are presented progressively, so you must help your child change his routines to stay clean and healthy.

A routine to stay clean

Talk to your child with autism about the daily routine he needs to follow to stay clean. Teach him that he should:

  • Wear clean underwear.
  • Wash his hands daily with soap and water, especially before and after eating or after using the bathroom.
  • Use a clean, dry towel after taking a bath.
  • Take a bath twice a day.
  • Make a greater effort to clean his genitals and armpits as they are the most sweaty areas and can produce a bad smell.
  • Brush his teeth twice a day and floss to prevent tooth decay and bad breath.

What about shaving?

In adolescence, facial hair begins to show.  For children with autism, it can be uncomfortable and they may try to remove it from their faces. Your son should not shave on his own. Guide him through the whole process and tell him that he should always ask an adult for help, at least until he learns how to do it safely.

Underwear, why wear it?

We recommend that you explain to your boy why it is convenient to wear underwear. This intimate garment should be comfortable, easy for him to put on and remove, and make him feel safe when walking, running or jumping.

Mention that there are different types of underwear and he can choose the one he likes best and suits his needs.

How can he remember this much information?

At first, changing his daily routine can be hard work, but over time, your child will end up getting used to it. He will eventually understand that these new habits will help him prevent diseases, the appearance of infections, and keep him clean and fresh.

Remind him how the routine should go every day. For this, you can use these strategies:

  • Make a schedule about the times he is supposed to wash his face, shave, or take a bath.
  • Use images to remind him of the steps he needs to take every morning.
  • Put numbers on daily items, such as shampoo and deodorant, to let him know which one he should apply first.
  • Prepare special kits with the supplies he needs. For example, the first kit should have soap, a toothbrush, toothpaste, mouthwash, deodorant, and a hairbrush.
  • Choose the supplies he likes to use for their smell, texture, or pleasant sensations they produce. In stores, there are many different brands and smells. Encourage him to choose the one likes the most.
boy within the spectrum

Take care of your body is a must, check out our tips!

Source: http://bit.ly/2KRnO7C

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