Behavior

This section deals with all blog posts and articles related to behaviour issues in those with autism, ASD ( formerly known as Aspergers). From which medical conditions may be causing specific behaviours, to how animals might be used to stop them, to how certain behaviours in infants can predict autism.

Tips To Teach Whole Body Listening: It’s a Tool Not a Rule

Adapted from an article by: Elizabeth Sautter, MA, CCC-SLP Phrases like “pay attention” and “listen carefully” ring out in classrooms across the country. Moms, dads, and other caregivers can be heard saying some version of these same words to children everywhere. Paying attention and listening to others are not only considered essential for social communication, but also for learning to be…

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5 Ways To Create Predictability: Part 2 of “Triad of Impairments” in Autism

Predictability is the ability to know and understand what is coming up next in your day. Many of us feel less anxious when we know what is expected of us, and how we are going to navigate our day to day lives. For someone on the spectrum, where even knowing which washroom to use -unless it is exactly like the one they are used to using at home- can be a major challenge. Predictability is a way for someone on the spectrum to assuage their anxiety over the unknown, and empower themselves into their daily tasks. For some of the spectrum, not knowing what to expect at a new school, in a new restaurant, or while on vacation can make life unbearable for themselves and their caregivers.

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Stimming:The Good and Bad Side of Anxious Behaviours

My most read post this month on Facebook was one about stimming. Stimming – or stims – are a wide variety of self-stimulating behaviours that people with ASD may exhibit when experiencing sensory overload or high levels of anxiety. Stimming can be a repetitive motion such as hand flapping or rocking, repetition of words or phrases, vocalizations, or even the repetitive…

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Tantrum vs Autistic Meltdown: What Is The Difference?

Many parents and caregivers have witnessed the fireworks of anger and emotion from a person with autism, and for many people they look exactly like the tantrums that children have when they are young. While they may look similar in external behaviour, it’s important to understand the difference between the two because tantrums need one kind of response, but that same response will only make things worse for a person have an autistic meltdown from being overwhelmed by sensory stimuli.

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Six Ways To Help Your Child or Teen With Anxiety

Anxiety is a natural and essential part of daily human existence. We all live with worries and stress from time to time, but when anxiety begins to interfere with a young person’s life – when they can no longer face school, or have problems interacting with friends, or performing simple tasks – what can we as parents and caregivers do to…

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The Positive Effect of Animals for People with ASD

The positive effects animals have on individuals with autism was recently highlighted in a study from the NIH/Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development. The study found when animals are present, children with autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) have lower readings on a device that detects anxiety and other forms of social arousal when interacting with their peers.

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Manipulation – Does It Occur in Autism?

I was presented with a statement about my daughter, Julia, in parent-teacher interviews this past week. Her teacher felt that Julia manipulates people to get her own way. My response was, “Manipulation implies that Julia knows what your thoughts are and what you are likely to do next in a given situation and I don’t think she can do that.”

When I pressed for details of the manipulation, it came to light that the behavior was happening around recorder time in music class.

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The Beales of Grey Gardens

Last week I watched a fascinating film about Big and Little Edie Bouvier Beale, aunt and cousin to Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis. They were brought to public attention back in the early 1970’s because of the uninhabitable state of their home, Grey Gardens, in East Hampton, New York.

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Creating Predictablility

I have a friend in the UK, John, who is 22 years old with Asperger Syndrome. He has taught me a great deal when it comes to helping my children effectively. John has never liked the triad of impairments used to define autism. He has his own triad which is the need for predictability, motivation and the uneven cognitive profile.

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