Sunday, 24 November 2013

Pathological Demand Avoidance

Understanding Patholigcal Demand Avoidance is a fantastic book.

Some children with a diagnosis of Autistic Spectrum Disorder can display extremely rigid behaviours. In these circumstances sometimes strategies typically associated with ASD don't seem to work and in some cases can make behaviours worse.

It's taken a long time for PDA to be recognised as a condition or even perhaps a strong trait amongst other autistic tendencies.

Our son is particularly resistant to change or to transitions and sometimes will just completely refuse to do things or comply with reasonable requests. No degree of bargaining or standing your ground will work and there is a big danger that taking a conflictive action will make the child increasingly frustrated and angry.

Looking back, many of our extreme meltdown situations may have been exaggerated by us trying to follow strategies advised by professionals who didn't fully understand our sons condition nor the reason for his behaviours.

This book explains PDA brilliantly and I would strongly recommend it.

Sunday, 3 November 2013

Ear Defenders

You may be surprised how many children with autistic disorder have hyper sensitivity and sensory issues.

Sometimes this manifests itsefl with extreme reactions to smell, touch, taste, warm/cold and sounds.

My son was particularly sensitive to loud noises and we found that using ear defenders helped him a great deal. Please don't get mixed up with headphones which can sometimes be useful in their own way. Ear defenders are designed to actually block sound out !

Yes, you do get some funny looks from people - however we would not have been able to get him into a public toilet without them. He was absolutely petrified of the noise of hand dryers and this helped us enormously.

Thursday, 31 October 2013

The Red Beast

The Red Beast is a great book for understanding and dealing with anger in children with autistic spectrum disorders. It explains perfectly the way little things rumble along inside us and can build up to an explosion.

If your child is prone to very angry outbursts, maybe they would benefit from knowing about the red beast inside of them. Like all emotions, it is ok to be angry - but we all need to learn how to deal with that anger.

Our son is one of many thousands of people who had their own "Red Beast" box filled with stress toys, bubble wrap, MP3 player with calming music, lavender scented cushion etc.

While this is not a miracle cure for meltdowns it can help and offer some hope to children when they are trying to understand and control their own emotions.