Parenting a child is no easy task. It requires time, effort, and patience – lots of it! And when you have an autistic toddler who needs extra care and attention, the challenge can be even greater. Navigating through therapies, treatment plans, special diets while simultaneously dealing with erratic behaviours and lack of communication can take a toll on parents’ physical and mental well-being.
But don’t fret (1); we’ve got you covered with our guide on how to help your autistic toddler without losing your sanity or sense of humour. From understanding their needs to coping strategies for yourself as a parent – if laughter truly is the best medicine then this article will leave you feeling fit as fiddle!
Understanding Autism: The Basics
Before diving into tips to support your little one better/optimally/efficiently about autism let’s understand what autism spectrum disorder (ASD) means (2). ASD is characterised by issues in social interaction, repetitive behavior patterns and/or difficulties communicating verbally/non-verbally that show up during early childhood years(Early years usually referred after 18 Months till age of termination): Symptoms might range from mild to severe nature affecting sensory processing capabilities like touch/taste/smell etc.. While there are different types/intensities within the autism spectrum disorders category but remember it’s important not stereotypes any given case that come across (3).
Understanding these basics principles sets us in motion towards learning ways that could benefit all parties involved especially toddlers struggling with development struggles related to they immediate families.
Nowadays architects build houses before constructing supports beams because neither would stand alone successfully without each other Most importantly tailored structure makes sure all measures correctly aligned appropriately carried out which ultimately lead outcome desired so let’s get building beamstructure #TeamParentsSupport (4a)!
Here are some tips to help you structure a support plan that works for your toddler, and for your family:
1. Seek Professional Help
First things first (4b)– if you suspect or have diagnosed an issue with your toddler’s developmental/receptive capabilities reach out to seek professional help be that Medical practitioners/ Pediatrician/ Developmental team like Occupational therapists/Speech skills trainers. Their experience in diagnosis, evaluation of the situation(s) at hand and recommendation will be invaluable in aiding families on this journey while participating members(meant parents/caregivers who are part of process), might provide valuable feedback as teamwork contributes towards progress easier.
2. Create a daily routine
Creating routines allows toddlers cope better and adjust to learning strategies more easily because they quickly learn what is coming next after one event concludes making it less stressful . Routine activities could include meal times/morning routines/school pickups-each parenting style differs hence setting practicality fitting within lifestyle (5a)
3. Incorporate Visual Learning Aids
Toddlers have receptive communication barriers which makes verbal education difficult hence incorporating visual aids become increasingly important.Often promoting engagement through colourful charts/toys/Stories/Images is helpful for these young minds comprehension (6a):
Importance of multisensory input processing
The ability of Tiny human brain multiple sensory inputs(APPROXIMENTLY providing example COLOURS+SHAPES&VOICES+BOLD contrast) translates stimuli into knowledge supports cognitive development beneficially thus mapping learning potential plus Adding element fun creates opportunities natural curiosity nurturing player roles enabling caregivers utilize materials found around specific surroundings catering interest reduces child dependence on screen manipulation ultimately resulting in Responsive free playtime “Yay!“.(putting long sentences start then adding short ones accentuates its impact)(combine emphatic phrases with the points being made).
|Colourful charts/Stories||Reading Comprehension Boosts|
|#2b46c3 colored Toys||Increased Tactile awareness|
|iLLUSTRATED BOOKS||VISUAL Stimulus|
4. Use Alternative Communication Tools
Autistic toddlers might exhibit limited/non-functional verbal communication skills making it hard for parents to connect.So, explore alternative methods like Sign language,Pictorial visual cards/Smart devices.Here are a few examples as elaboration (7a)
– Picture Exchange and Communication System(Pecs):Involves use Visual cue-cards instead of words
– Hand-over-hand sign language technique where toddler copies motions as a response
– Smart Devices installed with applications catering needs towards children.
These tools built ‘extracurricular activities’ help build natural instincts in daily tasks while allowing importance long-term engagement
5. Playtime: Fun activities = happy learning.
Children strive on interactive gameplay promotes practical carried-out approaches specific special care requirements required by ASD families (8a). Incorporating physical activity enriches gross/fine motor ability challenging environment/activities build confidence in interpersonal social functional aspect aiding sensory input processing responsiveness attention etc.Fun!! fun!! FUN!!
Ideas that Promote playfulness
1.Puzzles & Games
Puzzles/games require logical problem-solving approach constantly pushing cognitive functions further beyond their comfort zones leading to increased processing function strengthens memory muscle keeping exciting scenario (9a).
2.Interaction through art and creativity:
The great thing about Art is its wide nature -there’s no right or wrong way .There exist limitless possibilities allows self-expression exploratory ideas tactile stimulants thus improving emotional development horizons encouraging building up on imagination process generally boosting morale throughout growth progressions.”
Don’t worry if they get dirty because that just means they had fun — so everyone wins!
- Music Therapy
Music therapists specialising in ASD diagnosed cases have seen its effectiveness express emotions, share excitement and unspoken thoughts collectively removing blockages built up through daily communication barriers. Sensory input processing via singing and rhythmic movements enables the brain tackle certain impediments resulting in positive outside to inside motivation of child empowering their expressive abilities throughout developmental journey(JACKPOT!) (10a).
|Puzzles/games||Intellectual growth & increased memory retention|
|Artistic Expression||Emotional development & imaginative process building|
|#5e00ff colored Music||Natural expression/pattern recognition|
6. Support yourself
It’s no secret that raising an autistic toddler can be emotionally draining so it is crucial we promote self-love/self-care encouraging taking time-off if even for a small amount of time reflecting rejuvenating individual energy(since one cannot pour from an empty cup.) The following tips might help:
Join/Find Autism Support Groups
Joining support groups or attending counselling sessions allows like-minded people to share similar experiences/burden effectively filtering out positives(resulting lowered stress levels).Social interaction platforms allow networking with practical information sharing providing validation/necessary encouragement leading towards tremendous gains emotionally spiritually mentally etc. Prepare for breakdown (we are only human after all) lastly professional mental health management when required is always encouraged (11a)
Develop Time-out strategies
Parental leave features vary household to household but ultimately having someone relieve pressure on their needs(no makeup days necessary) becomes increasingly important – going on grocery errands/hangout with friends/partner/walks- Gardening/bird watching mornings? TeleMedicine incorporating virtual therapy sessions also provides alternate resource thus planning these fun-filled yet mind easing excursions ahead as part routine could great arsenal uplifting exhausted parents’ morale..
Although raising an autistic child has its fair share of unique challenges, it can be immensely rewarding. Identifying and meeting your toddler’s needs while improving their communication and social skills simultaneously is a gradual process hence the “journey” vibe (always) stays on tracks.Tackling each component one-step at a time ensures movement even slow in the correct direction building momentum towards developmental growth. Remember; seeking professional help, establishing routines, using visual aids for veritable children connection basing our teaching approach around structured fun/games/physical engagement games – this recipe accountably handles regulation under unified structures/support systems intending to turn stressors into progression.
Let’s have some fun!
Hey there, I’m Dane Raynor, and I’m all about sharing fascinating knowledge, news, and hot topics. I’m passionate about learning and have a knack for simplifying complex ideas. Let’s explore together!
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