Professional Therapies To Help Treat Sensory Overload
Thankfully, there are several studied and proven therapies to help with sensory overload relating to ASD.
- Cognitive Behavior Therapy: For phobias, anxiety disorders, autism and other conditions, experts often recommend cognitive behavioral therapy as it teaches the person how to cope and self-manage their emotions.
- Sensory Integration Therapy: As a known therapy to help people with ASD or sensory overload difficulties, sensory integration therapy helps children and adults with autism improve their daily functioning.
Getting Help For Sensory Sensitivities
Occupational therapists can help individuals with autism spectrum disorder deal with their environments, including coping with sensory sensitivities, staying on task and developing motor coordination and balance. They can also help families come up with appropriate strategies if the child self-stimulates or stims.
Dietitians and speech pathologists might be able to help if the child has taste and smell sensitivities that also cause eating issues. If families think some sensory issues are happening because the child isnt seeing properly, they could get their childs vision checked by an optometrist. Just like other children , the child with autism could have a visual problem.
If the child ignores sounds and people speaking, parents could get his/her hearing checked by an audiologist. This will help parents rule out any hearing problems. If the childs behavior hurts herself or other people around the, it is best to get professional advice. A good first step is talking with a pediatrician or psychologist.
Researchers Seek Patterns In The Sounds Of Autism
Kelly Rae ChiSpectrum
THIS ARTICLE IS MORE THAN FIVE YEARS OLD
This article is more than five years old. Autism research – and science in general – is constantly evolving, so older articles may contain information or theories that have been reevaluated since their original publication date.
Not just babble: Researchers are analyzing the grunts, squeals and early chatter of children with autism.
Scientists have created machines to detect distinctive speech patterns in children with autism that go unnoticed by the naked ear.
A Colorado-based nonprofit, LENA Foundation, is marketing one such system as a screen for autism in toddlers. Several academic research groups are also dissecting the complex vocalizations of children with the disorder.
Because the LENA screen hasnt been rigorously tested in independentstudies, some experts are skeptical that the technology can reliably detect autism-specific patterns. But its creators predict that it will soon be ready for the clinic.
For the last several years, Ive been quite persuaded that this will become a part of the standard screening and diagnosis not just in autism but in other clinical domains, says D. Kimbrough Oller, a scientific adviser for the LENA Foundation and professor of audiology and speech-language pathology at University of Memphis in Tennessee.
Even if the system is not ready for the clinic, some researchers say it is useful for studying speech development.
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What Is Vocal Stimming In Children With Autism
May 16, 2022
Stimming, which is a nickname for self-stimulatory behavior is a repetitive behavior such as head banging, hand flapping, rocking, or making noises or sounds that helps a child with Autism Spectrum Disorder to self-soothe.
In the case of vocal stimming , the child might make noises such as groaning, grunting, high- pitched screeching, squealing, humming, or repeating random words, words to a familiar song, phrases, or lines from a movie.
Yeast Overgrowth: What It Is And Why Parents Should Be Aware Of It
First, it’s essential to understand that a healthy gastrointestinal tract contains both fungus and beneficial bacteria, in balance with each other. However, if fungus or pathogenic bacteria overgrow and outnumber the beneficial bacteria, the gut flora becomes out of balance. We call this gut dysbiosis.
Why Parents of Children with Autism Should Be Aware of Yeast Overgrowth
While yeast overgrowth can happen to anyone, parent and clinical observations, in addition to research, suggests that it’s more common among individuals with autism. For example, results from this 2018 study show that anti-Candida albicans antibodies were found in 36.5% of children with ASD versus only 14.3% in neurotypical kids. This finding is noteworthy because Candida albicans is the most common type of fungus that can overgrow and become out of balance in the GI tract. Additionally, gastrointestinal dysfunction was found in about half of the children with autism who tested positive for anti-Candida albicans antibodies.
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Module : Early Warning Signs Of Autism
Boy describes body parts to his teacher as he draws a bunny.
Observation: Difficulty with Transitions: Joseph, 4 years 4 months
Shows characteristics of autism: tantrum as a result of having trouble transitioning.
Observation: Dumping and Sorting, 3 years
Shows child dumping and sorting shapes.
Shows characteristic of autism: echolalia.
Observation: Eye Contact: Leighdionne, 2 years 9 months
Shows red flags of autism in the context of an ABA therapy session: no response to name, lack of eye contact.
Demonstrates symbolic play and joint attention in a toddler.
Observation: Imitation: James, 36 months and Alex, 24 months
Shows boys imitating mother and each other in speech and action: parallel play. Example of typical developmental milestone.
Observation: Inability to Locate Body Parts: Sajid, 3 years 1 month
Shows red flags of autism in the context of an ABA therapy session: lack of social engagement and joint attention.
Observation: Inappropriate Play: Evan, 17 months
Shows early warning signs of autism: lack of joint attention and social engagement, inappropriate play with a toys, preoccupation with parts of the toy, lack of pretend play. Demonstrates interaction between therapist and child to encourage appropriate play.
Observation: Joint Attention: Noeliah 15 months
Shows red flags for autism .
Physical And Emotional Symptoms Autistic Individuals Experience
Arguably, the key to understanding autism is to know the ways that it affects you or your child on both a physical and emotional level. While there are three core autism symptom categories namely social deficits, language impairment and repetitive behaviors, there are other overlapping issues, conditions and challenges that your child may face.
One of the most particularly challenging, yet manageable, is sensory overload. A common telltale symptom among individuals with autism is reacting unusually to certain sounds, tastes, smells and textures.
When youre on the autistic spectrum, its almost as though you have some of your senses turned up too high, whereas others seem to be too low. For example, you may over or under react to loud noises or pain. You may also be unable to touch certain fabrics, or they can feel very uncomfortable against your skin.
In addition to the sensory overload experiences described above, generally speaking, if you have ASD, you may also:
- Exhibit unusual sleeping and eating habits.
- Enjoy lining up objects and will like specific parts of said objects.
As you can see, an individual with autism can face many symptoms. As a spectrum disorder, these symptoms can vary in their intensity, frequency and severity.
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Know The Types Of Sensitivity
There are several different types of noise sensitivity, and there are different treatments for each type. Consult with an audiologist to pinpoint which type of sensitivity is affecting your quality of life. There are 5 most common types of sensitivities which are hyperacusis, hypersensitive hearing of specific frequencies, recruitment, phonophobia, and misophonia but keep in mind that a person may be affected by more than one issue.
Detecting Autism In The Very Young
But the U.S. Centers for Disease Control says that its possible to get a reliable autism diagnosis as early as age 2. And many parents notice early signs before their childs first birthday and realize something is different by the time their child is 18 months old.
The earlier a child with autism begins treatment, the better the outcome. If you notice any of these signs or have concerns about your childs development, talk with his doctor.
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Strategies To Help Individuals With Autism Respond To Noise Sensitivity
- You can make a list of safe spaces your loved one can visit where they will not hear the sounds they are sensitive to.
- You can speak with them about volunteering at a quiet place, such as the local library or bookstore.
- You may schedule regular quiet breaks so that after being near a busy and noisy place, they will have some relief.
- You may want to try muffling the noise of the bottom of the chair legs scraping on the floor by putting cut tennis balls on the bottom of the chair legs.
- People on the autism spectrum can have earplugs or noise-canceling headphones on hand in case of unwanted sounds.
- Soundproofing, noise-reduction and sound absorption materials can be used within the home to minimize the negative impact of unwelcome noise effects on individuals with an autism spectrum disorder. Soundproofing a room, for example, can provide much-needed relief.
- Install carpets can be used in order to muffle sounds.
- You can encourage your loved one who has autism to get out and take a walk in nature on a daily basis.
- Expose your loved one who is on the spectrum to the source of the noise they have difficulty in handling. If they cant bear the sound of the vacuum cleaner, allow them to handle a machine when it is not on. Perhaps turn it to the lowest setting and see if they would like to try using the vacuum. Practice this little and often, and you may just find that they get used to the noise source.
Helping Individuals With Autism With Sensory Sensitivities
What you do to help the child with autism spectrum disorder and sensory sensitivities depend on how the individual reacts to the environment. If the individual is easily overwhelmed by surroundings, you could try some techniques.
You can have a quiet space the child can go to when he/she feels overwhelmed. You can give the child extra time to take in what you are saying. You can introduce the child to new places at quiet times, gradually increasing the amount of time she spends there in later visits. Let the child try earplugs or noise-canceling headphones to help with sound sensitivities.
It is also a good idea to speak with people ahead of time about the needs of a child with autism spectrum disorder if you are going somewhere they might be able to adjust a few things to make it easier. For example, if you are making a playdate for your child, you could ask for it to be in a place that is familiar to your child. You could look out for cinemas that have sensory-friendly movie screenings.
If a child with autism needs more stimulation from the environment, you could other suggestions. You can arrange for extra playtime outside. You can give him/her toys that are extra-stimulating, like playdough or a squishy ball. They can have a certain time of the day to listen to music or bounce on the trampoline. You can speak loudly in an exaggerated way to your child if she tends to ignore sounds.
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Accelerated Growth Of The Circumference Of The Head In Relation To Its Starting Point
A study conducted by Courchesne found that, in certain cases, children diagnosed with autism were born with small head circumferences, but within two years the circumference grew rapidly so that it reached larger dimensions of head circumference in comparison to typical development of children. This sign is not conclusive for autism.
It is important to note that each of these symptoms may indicate other disorders not related to autism! It is therefore imperative to first and foremost conduct medical examinations to negate these possibilities. Once this has been done and two of the above-mentioned symptoms persist over time, the possibility of a development disorder linked to autism should be investigated.
Autism Sound Sensitivity: Understanding Asd Childrens Relationship With Noise
As with much of the wealth of knowledge we have about children with autism, their sensitivity to sound has not been fully explained. Yet we do know that it is one of the most common symptoms.
Sensory sensitivity is common in itself but an overreaction to sound in particular is often the most obvious and severe struggle that ASD children face. However, it wont affect all children equally. For a great number of children with autism, the opposite is true, with them actually showing signs of being under-sensitive to noise. In this case, they may be unresponsive when you call their name, seemingly unable to hear you.
For those children who are over-sensitive to sound, noise that seems at a suitable level to you may be overwhelming to them. This is because their senses are taking in too much information. In contrast, under-sensitive children will have senses that take in too little information. The exact reasons behind this are unclear.
Research shows it seems to come down to how the brain is wired. Researchers at MIT and Brown University believe they have discovered a neural circuit that could account for differences in how the world is perceived. This particular circuit requires a protein called Shank3 but in tests on mice where this protein is lacking, neurons are over-active, causing an exaggerated response to stimuli. This occurs in a region of the brain known as the somatosensory cortex, an area that has long been linked to autism.
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Yeast Overgrowth In Autism
Yeast overgrowth is a medical issue common to autism that can cause sleep disturbances, sensory issues, hyperactivity, picky eating, stimming, and more. Even more concerning, yeast overgrowth can cause physical pain. However, when treated, symptoms can lessen or disappear altogether, significantly improving your child’s quality of life.
In this article, you will find information about yeast overgrowth, including:
- What it is and why parents of children with autism should be aware of it
The Calming Tag Points
A tag point is the behavior that will result in a tag and reinforcement.
The calming tag points are five tag points that I come back to time and again because they are so useful. The calming tag points are:
- Quiet Mouth The child is silent
- Appropriate Vocalization or Communication The child communicates in his/her own way
- Hands Down Hands placed at side or in front of body
- Feet On Floor Both feet touch the floor or ground
- Exhales Child breathes out you can see shoulders/chest go down upon exhalation.
All of these are simple behaviors that a child performs often, so there are lots of opportunities to tag and reinforce. Reinforcing these tag points brings about increased calm and communicative behaviors in children with autism. Plus, the more reinforcement and success our children experience, the happier they are.
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Creating A Plan To Deal With Sounds
All of these observations gave me food for thought as I developed a plan to help him cope with his sensitivity to sound. Over the years his ability to tolerate noise has steadily increased, and barking dogs are his only remaining noise-related phobia.
Here are eleven ways to help a highly sensitive person learn how to cope with and enjoy everyday noisy situations.
S To Calm A Screaming Autistic Child
Your autistic child is screaming, and all hope feels lost. Your child may have lost their hope, too. Calming a screaming autistic child is different from calming a screaming non-autistic child, especially if they have a history of aggression. Here are the steps to take to calm a screaming autistic child.
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Noise Control: 11 Tips For Helping Your Child With Autism Deal With Noise
One of my sons most frequent questions is, Whats that sound, Mommy?
I often cant hear what hes hearing. He can hear the school bus when its still half a mile from our house. With all the windows closed inside our home, he can hear the next-door neighbors sump pump switch on or their garage door opening. He can hear a whisper in the next room or an air vent in a busy department store or an airplanes high-pitched engine long before its visible in the sky. At a noisy carnival, he can hear his favorite song playing across the park.
The downside to sound sensitivity is that noise quickly becomes painful and can even trigger a panic attack. When a person can hear everything simultaneously, it becomes almost impossible to pay attention to the task at hand. Separating and prioritizing sounds drains a persons energy, and the constant assault of noise causes a persons anxiety level to escalate.
When my son was a toddler, he had a panic attack every time our washing machine clicked loudly to change cycles. He developed a phobia of all types of bells. He covered his ears and cried in crowds. But he became calm, even joyful, every single time we went for a walk in the woods, visited the library or entered any kind of religious environment: his stiff, tight muscles would relax instantly in my arms.
My 4yo Autistic Son Super High Pitched Squeals When Happy Help
I’m trying to constructively curb my sons high pitched happy squeals. When he’s watching his favorite videos he will sudden squeal at a volume and pitch so loud it is on par with a referees whistle being blown a foot away from your ear. It has happened a few times in restaurants making a few people jump out of their seats.
He just did so 5 minutes ago and my right ear is still ringing. I plan to talk to his ABA therapists about this tomorrow, and I’d like to demonstrate it, but of course it only happens when they aren’t around, and it doesn’t happen all the time. i.e. He can watch the same video tomorrow and just do his standard giggles and laugh. Because of that, right now, I can only be reactionary :/
EDIT: A lot you are trying to help, and I appreciate that, but are not understanding. He is squealing, not screaming. This a result of him clenching his jaw when he’s excited and trying to laugh at the same time.
P.S. For you on the anti-ABA bandwagon, save it.
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