The Optimal Food List For Autistic Children
A study found that the most common nutrient insufficiencies in children with autism were fiber, folic acid, calcium, iron, zinc, and vitamins A, C, D, E, K, B6, and B12. Due to food preferences or obsessions, some children may have too much of one or two of these nutrients. Food avoidances mean that many autistic children dont have enough of these vitamins and minerals. To help your child get the right balance of these important nutrients, try adding these foods to their diet with the help of their treatment team:
- Beans like navy beans, pinto beans, and black beans
- Peanuts and peanut butter
- Cruciferous vegetables like kale and broccoli
- Dark chocolate, as an occasional sweet treat
- Lean beef, turkey, and chicken
- Citrus like oranges and grapefruit
- Onions and garlic
Many of these foods offer multiple nutrients, so combining them in different ways through meal planning can help your child get high-quality nutrients, avoid foods that cause discomfort, and slowly add new experiences to your childs eating habits. Begin planning meals that contain several fruits, vegetables, grains, and proteins, so there is a variety of options. Sprinkle in new foods with tried-and-true options you know your child will like.
Make A Christmas Sensory Bin
There are TONS of great ideas for sensory bins online. Sensory bins provide children with the opportunity to explore through tactile play that engages their senses. Sensory bins encourage various types of development and are great activities for the home. The best part is, you can theme it however you want. Do you want a Christmas sensory bin with white tinsel? You can make one. Or a nutcracker sensory bin? Absolutely. Here are 50+ ideas for you to try this winter.
Carl’s Concerto / Too Much Of A Good Thing
Carl has agreed to play the accordion for Georges puppet show. But his routines are getting in the way of rehearsals. Now George must decide: keep Carl and risk the show, or replace Carl and risk his friendship? / Buster enlists Binkys help to keep him from gorging on delicious Tuvaluna cookies. Will Busters self-control hold … or crumble?
Recommended Reading: Level 2 Moderate Autism
When Carl Met George
George is excited about spending time with his new friend, Carl, who seems to know all kind of cool facts about trains and about well lots of things! Then George learns that Carl has Aspergers Syndrome a form of autism that makes Carl see the world differently than most people. Can George and Carl remain good friends and perhaps even learn from each other?
Be Careful About Changing Your Childs Diet
Talk to your doctor before trying something different, like a special diet. Thereâs no hard evidence that special diets help children with ASD. Autism is a complex brain disorder. While it may seem that cutting out certain foods could relieve your childâs symptoms, it might actually cause more harm.
For example, children with autism often have thinner bones. Dairy products have nutrients that can make their bones stronger. Studies on a protein in milk products called casein have found that many children performed the same whether or not they ate foods with this protein. Their autism symptoms didnât change in any remarkable way.
Some evidence shows that people with autism may have low levels of certain vitamins and minerals. This does not cause autism spectrum disorder. But supplements may be suggested to improve nutrition. Vitamin B and magnesium are two of the supplements most often used for people with autism. But people can overdose on these vitamins, so megavitamins should be avoided.
However, some diet changes may help with certain symptoms of autism. Food allergies, for example, may make behavior problems worse. Removing the allergen from the diet may improve behavior issues.
Some children with autism have digestive problems like constipation, belly pain, or nausea and vomiting. Your doctor can suggest a diet that wonât make them worse.
Also Check: What Color Ribbon Is For Autism
What Are The Types Of Autism Spectrum Disorders
These types were once thought to be separate conditions. Now, they fall under the range of autism spectrum disorders including:
- Asperger’s syndrome. These children don’t have a problem with language in fact, they tend to score in the average or above-average range on intelligence tests. But they have social problems and a narrow scope of interests.
- Autistic disorder. This is what most people think of when they hear the word “autism.” It refers to problems with social interactions, communication, and play in children younger than 3 years.
- Childhood disintegrative disorder. These children have typical development for at least 2 years and then lose some or most of their communication and social skills.
- Pervasive developmental disorder . Your doctor might use this term if your child has some autistic behavior, like delays in social and communications skills, but doesnât fit into another category.
The Difference Between Sensory Processing Disorder And Autism:
Read Also: What Does It Mean To Be Mildly Autistic
How Is Autism Diagnosed
Doctors check babies and little kids for signs of autism at every checkup. A parent may think that something is wrong and tell the doctor. Maybe the child is old enough to speak but doesn’t. Or a kid doesn’t seem interested in people or plays in unusual ways.
When a doctor thinks a kid might have autism, he or she will work with a team of experts to see if it is autism or something else.
We Dont Need Autism Awareness We Need Autism Acceptance
Youve probably seen the bumper stickers, Facebook posts and the t-shirts calling for Autism Awareness. But as parents of children on the Autism Spectrum continually insist, our society is aware of autism. Its autism acceptance that we need. Though one in 68 American children are now diagnosed with autism, our society still treats autistic individuals and their families as social pariahs. To become a more inclusive society will take advancements in access to services, affordable health care, employment opportunities, Medicaid expansion, fair pay, and more opportunities for quality education.
More for Parents and Families:
Don’t Miss: Camels Milk Autism
We Cant Just Get A Babysitter
Generally, when parents need a night away, they hire a babysitter. Simple right? Well, not if youre the parent of a child on the Autism Spectrum. Kids with autism exhibit different behaviors than do neurotypical children. For one, parents leaving isnt just annoying, its disturbing on an emotional level. That makes it very hard for an autistic child to settle down while a babysitter is running the house.
Bringing Up A Child With Autism
Getting a diagnosis
If you notice any of the symptoms of Autism and are concerned about your childs development you should discuss this with your G.P. They can arrange for your child to have a specialist assessment to see if they need a diagnosis if necessary.
If you have had a diagnosis of Autism, you should be referred to see a paediatric consultant who can talk to you more about the input your child will need to support them at home, at school and with their social life.
Children with Autism may need help from several different specialists to support their development, including a speech and language therapist, to support their communication and social skills, an occupational therapist, to help suggest techniques and equipment to make their physical environment easier to cope with, and a child psychologist to help them cope with any anxiety or behavioural issues they might have.
If your child is given a diagnosis of Autism, it can leave you feeling upset, shocked and concerned. It may be helpful to remember that your child is still the same person and that nothing has changed. Giving children the label of Autism can just be considered as a way for professionals to be able to signpost and provide appropriate support for your child. The better support your child receives, the more they can thrive, be happy and achieve their potential.
Connecting with others in the same situation and being able to talk through your feelings and concerns can be very helpful.
Don’t Miss: What Colors Are Best For Autism
Involve Your Family And Your Childs Daycare Pre
Sensory processing disorder is usually a problem everywhere that you or your child spends the day.
6. Avoid sensory overload and resulting meltdowns for children.
There can be many triggers in daily life that make dealing with sensory problems more difficult. Living a sensory-friendly life will make things easier and more enjoyable.
How Can I Use Twinkl’s Autism Resources To Support Autistic Students In The Classroom
Each Autistic child will have individual learning needs and abilities. Children with often find change hard and have difficulties with communication, social and play skills. Many require a routine to understand the world around them, making unstructured times harder. Children with ASC may experience difficulties processing sensory information, which can manifest in being under-sensitive or intensely sensitive to stimuli such as sound or touch.
When managing all these challenges at school, the increased demands that Autistic people face can lead to stress, anxiety, frustration, challenging behaviour and meltdowns. Its incredibly important that teachers feel equipped to effectively support Autistic children in the classroom.
Our selection of Autism resources are designed by our wonderful team of specialists with the goal of supporting Autistic students in mind. We hope that by making a bank of professionally made activities and guidance ahead of time, we can guide teachers, educators and parents in supporting Autistic children through their education.
With ready-made resources available at the click of a button, teachers can save some valuable time, but still get a high quality, fantastic range of Autism resources to use in their teaching.
Read Also: Self Diagnose Autism
Key Points To Remember About Autism
- autism – takiwtanga is a difference in development that affects communication , social skills and behaviour
- children with autism – takiwtanga can have a wide range of challenges and strengths, and these can vary with age and over time in an individual
- if your child does have autism – takiwtanga, there are services available to support your child, you and your whnau
Questions Dealing With Balance And Space
- Are there opportunities for swinging?
- Are there opportunities to balance on beams or boards?
- Are there opportunities to bounce or climb?
- Are there opportunities for a person to sit with their backs against the wall?
- Are there opportunities to sit where a person can see the whole room?
- Are there quick exit routes?
Some autistic people find it difficult to have a sense of themselves in relation to the physical world around them. Rocking, swinging and balancing can help them gain a sense of self. Having too much room in front of them or behind them can cause anxiety if they need to have something directly behind them or in front of them to gain a sense of themselves. In addition, some people with autism experience anxiety if they cannot see what is happening or where sounds are coming from and they find this very disorientating.
Many people with autism need space around them and feel overwhelmed by crowds or clutter. They can feel hemmed in by corridors and need to know there is a quick escape route.
Recommended Reading: Do People Outgrow Autism
Preference For Routine And Predictability
Most autistic people prefer to know what to expectand many prefer consistent routines. Some can become very upset when an expected experienced is changed without notice. That doesn’t mean autistic people can’t handle change, but most do far better when they have time to prepare for something new.
To help people with autism who are coming to a new venue or experience, therefore, it’s important to provide opportunities to prepare in advance. It’s also important to explain what’s expected, address potential concerns, and provide as much consistency as possible.
For example, autism-friendly experiences and venues might:
- Provide previews in the form of videos and/or social stories.
- Provide clear written and spoken information about what to expect before getting started.
- Be sure to have familiar people, foods, etc. available as possible.
- Be consistent from venue to venue or from event to event, so that autistic participants know exactly what to expect before they arrive.
Questions Dealing With Auditory Input
- Are there regular external sounds, such as traffic, children playing or building works?
- Are there regular internal sounds, such as clocks ticking, refrigerators humming, music?
- Is it possible to reduce external sounds from permeating to the inside?
- Is there a way of reducing sounds for each individual, such as earplugs?
Many people with autism tell us that they can hear sounds at many decibels above those others can hear. They can hear sounds that are a lot further away and the intensity of sounds can be deafening. They can be listening to rock music on high volume and still hear a conversation in the room next door.
You May Like: Autism Self Diagnosis
What Exactly Does Sensory Processing Mean
Processing means a series of actions to get a specific result.
Remember that our brains receive, understand, and respond to our senses. Our brains have to organize information from our eyes, ears, nose, mouth, skin, inner ear , muscles and joints and organs for our body to respond to it.
Your sense of balance and head movement is called your vestibular sense. Also, your sense of body movement is also called proprioception. Your brain is complex and your senses are complex. This is because you have many senses, not just five senses but at least eight. A sensory problem can affect any of these senses.
How Is Autism Treated
Thereâs no cure for autism. But early treatment can make a big difference in development for a child with autism. If you think your child shows symptoms of ASD, tell your doctor as soon as possible.
What works for one person might not work for another. Your doctor should tailor treatment for you or your child. The two main types of treatments are:
- Behavioral and communication therapy to help with structure and organization. Applied behavior analysis is one of these treatments it promotes positive behavior and discourages negative behavior. Occupational therapy can help with life skills like dressing, eating, and relating to people. Sensory integration therapy might help someone who has problems with being touched or with sights or sounds. Speech therapy improves communication skills.
- Medications to help with symptoms of ASD, like attention problems, hyperactivity, or anxiety.
Complementary treatments may help boost learning and communication skills in some people with autism. Complementary therapies include music, art, or animal therapy, like horseback riding and even swimming with dolphins.
Recommended Reading: Autism Awarness Symbol
Teach Kids About Autism
Our Kit for Kids program is designed to teach elementary and middle school students about their peers with autism. The kit is centered around an illustrated booklet entitled Whats Up with Nick?. This colorful, kid-friendly booklet tells the story about a new student, a boy with autism named Nick, through the eyes of a typical peer. The story teaches children that students with autism may think differently or need some accommodations, but all students are of equal worth and should be treated as such.
You can use this program to increase awareness of autism among students from grades K-8. With greater knowledge of autism, our youth will learn to see the person first rather than focus on a classmates disability. By increasing students acceptance of differences, the Kit for Kids creates a more inclusive classroom and overall sense of community.
Who Tells/where To Tell
Certainly circumstances vary from family to family. If your child is asking questions dont put off answering them. You should be forthcoming and not suggest talking about it later. Not providing an answer could increase the childs anxiety and make the topic and information more mysterious.
For many families, using a knowledgeable professional to begin the disclosure process instead of a family member or a friend of the family might be the best option. Having a professional involved, at least in the beginning stages of disclosure, leaves the role of support and comfort to the family and those closest to the child. For someone with an autism spectrum disorder, it can be especially hard to seek comfort from someone who gives you news that can be troubling and confusing. Having a professional whose role is clearly to discuss information about the childs diagnosis and how the disability is affecting his/herlife can make it easier for family members to be seen by the child as supportive. The professional discussing information with the child about his/her disability can also help the parents understand the childs reaction and provide suggestions for supporting their child. Having a professional involved also allows the use of a location outside of the family home for beginning this process.
Read Also: Freddie Highmore Really Autistic
What Are The Signs Of Autism
Symptoms of autism usually appear before a child turns 3. Some people show signs from birth.
- A lack of eye contact
- A narrow range of interests or intense interest in certain topics
- Doing something over and over, like repeating words or phrases, rocking back and forth, or flipping a lever
- High sensitivity to sounds, touches, smells, or sights that seem ordinary to other people
- Not looking at or listening to other people
- Not looking at things when another person points at them
- Not wanting to be held or cuddled
- Problems understanding or using speech, gestures, facial expressions, or tone of voice
- Talking in a sing-song, flat, or robotic voice
- Trouble adapting to changes in routine
Some children with autism may also have seizures. These might not start until adolescence.