April is Autism Awareness Month, a time for everyone to encourage, learn more, and understand all aspects autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Speech Language Pathologist’s play an integral roll in therapy treatment for kids with ASD. Many children with ASD have difficulty with social communication. Speech Language Pathologists bring value by developing language, verbal cues, and improving social interaction, which often eases challenging behaviors, improves academic success, and makes a difference on the child’s overall quality of life.
It is also important to understand that the lives of those who live and care for people with ASD are affected as well. They face many challenges and obstacles, and no day is ever the same for them. However, they want everyone, even people who do not live and care for a person with ASD, to also understand and be aware of the condition. They want people to understand that there is nothing wrong with being “atypical”.
Many blogs that were written by parents of children with ASD seem to mention key qualities that are important for the public to become aware of, so that they can have a better understanding of autism. Parents said that they would appreciate more consideration, acceptance, and patience when being around or working with children with ASD. They would like others to treat their children as they would treat others who do not have ASD, and they also do not want people to pity them. They want parents to educate their children about ASD, even if their children do not have it.
In honor of Autism Awareness Month, we have asked our parents and caregivers to provide us with some helpful feedback based on their experience.
Here’s what they’ve said:
“What is one thing you wish other people (parents, teachers, students) knew about Autism Spectrum Disorders?”
- “If your child has autism, it is extremely important that he/she receives early intervention and speech therapy.”
- “They need more time to process language, sometimes they get stuck on a subject, and need help with social interactions. They are not scary or weird, just different. People have told me that autism is caused by bad parenting, and that is NOT true. And kids with autism are only kids, so they need all the fun like “normal kids”.”
- “I wish more people would become more aware of autism, what it is, how it affects our children, and how to deal with it as well as people who have it. They should offer more help for individuals with autism, more support groups for parents because not everyone can cope with the fact that their child or children are diagnosed with the disorder and have to live with it for the rest of their lives. They need to have more teachers in the schools that are trained to deal with kids with autism. In schools, children should be taught how to deal with their peers who may have the disorder. Also, parents should be granted help in the homes for their child or children who with autism.”
- “Every child is different with autism. They all present unique strengths and challenges. I wish people became more in tune with their struggles and issues that they face every day.
- “Autism is a cognitive impairment in some areas of mental functioning but not all of them. Children with autism can be very intelligent and bright in acquiring knowledge and less developed in communication simultaneously. For instance, non-verbally oriented children may still have very high language comprehension skills, such as my son. Please don’t assume because a child is non-verbal they lack intelligence or comprehension. An autistic mind is not underdeveloped by any means, only challenged to perceive reality in a typical way. Focus on developing patience, confidence, and love for your child’s unique ways of seeing the world and communicating about it with you. “
- “That it is not your fault that your child gets overwhelmed in certain circumstances.”
- “Awareness, understanding, and early treatment. … your kid goes a long way.”
- “The fact that I can’t speak doesn’t mean that I am not capable of doing everything others can.”
These thoughts are what many parents, caregivers, friends, and families, etc. want the public to know about autism. So please, try to educate yourself and others.
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