Autism Speech Therapy

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Autism Speech Therapist communicating with child

Autism Speech Therapist

What is Autism?

Autism Speaks states that autism or autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is characterized by challenges in social skills, repetitive behaviors, speech, and nonverbal communication. The presence of both conditions is necessary for a diagnosis of autism in the early stages of a child’s developmental life:

  • Ongoing issues with interpersonal communication.
  • Limited and repetitive behaviors, interests, or activities

Miracles in Motion uses evidence-based techniques and strategies to address the specific speech and language challenges faced by these children. Treatment plans focus on improving verbal and nonverbal communication, social interaction, pragmatic language, and overall language comprehension.

Signs and Symptoms of Autism

Signs and symptoms of autism are often noticeable in young children. Sometimes, these indications and manifestations may not be easily noticeable, and their recognition may not occur until the child reaches school age or even adulthood.

As individuals with autism age, they may experience different signs and symptoms, reflecting their unique experiences. However, it is likely that they consistently face certain challenges that include:

  • Communication
  • Social skills
  • Behaviors

Begin your child’s speech journey. Book now for a free consultation to address speech issues.

Communication

Challenges in comprehending, speaking, interpreting written material, and expressing themselves in written form, thereby affecting their ability to communicate effectively:

  • Mastering the understanding and use of bodily movements, such as gestures or indications.
  • The ability to understand and use vocabulary effectively.
  • Following instructions.
  • Certain individuals with autism may exhibit the capacity to read at a young age without fully understanding the content. This phenomenon is commonly referred to as hyperlexia.
  • Participating in conversations.

An individual with autism may

  • be hard to understand;
  • repeat words or phrases that they have recently heard or that they heard days or weeks earlier (also known as echolalia);
  • Use a mechanical or rhythmic vocal quality to rephrase the following passage.
  • choose to have limited conversation or stay quiet, and;
  • instead of using verbal or physical cues, individuals communicate through provocative actions.

Social Skills

Individuals with autism often face challenges with social interactions. They may appear uninterested or unmotivated in forming connections or friendships with others.

Individuals with autism often face challenges:

  • Two individuals share their attention and focus on the same object or event.
  • Engage in interactive activities with others and share toys.
  • Being open to others’ invitations to engage in play or conversation.
  • Understand the emotions of those around us.
  • One can alternate between playing and conversing.
  • Creating and sustaining friendships.

Behaviors

An individual with autism is more likely have this:

  • Participate in repetitive actions, such as regular gestures or physical movements.
  • People may have unexplained reasons for crying, laughing, or becoming angry.
  • Transitioning between activities can be difficult.
  • Some individuals may experience feelings of agitation when exposed to certain sounds, smells, or textures.
  • Only consuming a limited variety of foods.
  • Select your meals based on their visual appeal or texture.
  • Show interest in specific objects or subjects.
Treatments for People With Autism

Treatments for People With Autism

Seeking early support for young children diagnosed with autism is important. It is advised to consider local resources that provide early intervention and preschool programs. Furthermore, individuals on the autism spectrum, including adolescents and adults, can significantly improve their communication skills in educational, professional, and social contexts with the right treatment and support.

Throughout a person’s life, they may encounter various experts who can provide support for autism. The professionals include audiologists, speech-language pathologists (SLPs), psychologists, educators specializing in special needs, vocational counselors, and job coaches.

The treatment of autism highly depends on the contribution of Speech-language pathologists (SLPs). These professionals play a crucial role in improving communication and social skills for individuals with autism, promoting development in various settings such as homes, schools, and workplaces. In addition, speech-language pathologists (SLPs) assist individuals in the acquisition of Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) methods to effectively communicate. Speech-language pathologists (SLPs) work closely with autistic individuals, either individually or in small groups, to provide beneficial opportunities to practice skills with peers.

SLPs may address a variety of skills based on individual needs, such as:

  • Socializing effectively in diverse environments
  • Utilizing several forms of communication aids
  • Participating in dialogues 
  • Transitioning smoothly between activities or environments
  • Embracing change and broadening horizons, such as experimenting with novel cuisines and pastimes
  • Developing proficiency in literacy skills

Speech-language pathologists can also instruct families and/or caregivers on engaging with their child in a playful manner while simultaneously teaching developmental skills.

  • Discuss what you are saying/doing
  • Discuss about what a child is saying/doing
  • adding extra words for what a child has said
  • offering assistance while empowering the child to complete tasks independently
  •  incorporating sensory aids for play activities.

Speech-language pathologists (SLPs) can offer valuable assistance to autistic individuals as they navigate the transition to the workforce.

  • Write cover letters
  • Enhance interview techniques
  • Acquire effective communication tactics for the workplace
  • Develop skills in presenting and standing up for individual requirements
  • Tackle challenges related to finding suitable accommodations.

Speech-language pathologists play a crucial role in supporting individuals with autism to express themselves using language that feels authentic to them and empowering them to speak up for their needs.

 

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