Early diagnosis and treatment helps young children with autism develop to their full potential. The primary goal of treatment is to improve the overall ability of the child to function. Symptoms and behaviors of autism can combine in many ways and vary in severity. Also, individual symptoms and behaviors often change over time. For these reasons, treatment strategies are tailored to individual needs and available family resources. But in general children with autism respond best to highly structured and specialized treatment. A program that addresses helping parents and improving communication, social, behavioral, adaptive and learning aspects of a child’s life will be most successful. If you’ve recently learned that your child has or might have autism spectrum disorder, you’re probably wondering and worrying about what comes next. No parent is ever prepared to hear that a child is anything other than happy and healthy and an ASD diagnosis can be particularly frightening. You may be unsure about how to best help your child or confused by conflicting treatment advice. Or you may have been told that ASD is an incurable, lifelong condition, leaving you concerned that nothing you do will make a difference.
While it is true that ASD is not something a person simply “grows out of,” there are many treatments that can help children acquire new skills and overcome a wide variety of developmental challenges. From free government services to in-home behavioral therapy and school-based programs, assistance is available to meet your child’s special needs. With the right treatment plan and a lot of love and support, your child can learn, grow and thrive.