ABA and Early Intervention – A Success Story

When Peter first became a client with Cayer Behavioral Group, he was three years old, made minimal eye contact, spoke only a few words, and could not sit in one spot for more than a couple of seconds.

Peter would engage in self-injuring behavior, in the form of pinching or grabbing his face, arms, and legs. He did this anytime he was denied access to desired items, or when he was told to do something he did not want to do.  The first day he was taught to use the bathroom on his own, he engaged in an hourlong tantrum because he did not want to take his diaper off.

Peter started preschool this fall where he attended half-days for three days per week.  He had never been in a school setting before, and he had a lot to learn, such as:

 

  • Standing and walking in line with peers
  • Sitting in a group
  • Following group demands
  • Complying with his teacher’s requests
  • Engaging in non-preferred activities
  • Learning all the school rules
  • Interacting with new children

 

Initially, his CBG therapists were with Peter the entire time he was at school to help him learn how to be independent and successful within his classroom.

Through effective and efficient ABA (applied behavior analysis) procedures and programs, his CBG therapists were able to phase out of his classroom setting entirely within four months.  Peter now attends his preschool five days a week for three hours a day, all by himself!  

Peter learned to appropriately use the bathroom on his own in three months and has not had any accidents within his school setting.  He learned to sit for an extended period of time, to follow classroom routine, and appropriately interact and share with his peers.  

As he continues to become more independent with his daily routine, his CBG therapists will continue to phase out until he no longer requires services.

Increased independence and success is always the goal at Cayer Behavioral Group, one student at a time.

 

Signs that your child may have Autism

Signs That Your Child Might Have Autism

1 out of every 68 children is diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder in the US.

How do you know if you should seek out a diagnosis or additional help?

 

Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) “is a range of conditions characterized by challenges with social skills, repetitive behaviors, speech and nonverbal communication, as well as by unique strengths and differences” (Autism Speaks, 2017)

This broad range of challenges is indicative of why the diagnosis is on a spectrum. Every child experiences the world around them differently. With every child being unique, how do I know if my child is showing early signs?

Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) typically demonstrate some important indicators around 18 months to three years of age. Here are signs to look for:

  • Your child is not reaching the typical developmental milestones such as no babbling by 1 year of age or not saying any words by 16 months of age. For a reference sheet of developmental milestones, read more here.
  • A lack of engagement in social interaction, whether it be between mom and baby or peers at the park. Your children should be able to enjoy a fun game of peek-a-boo by the end of year one and smile at mom or dad when they are present. In addition, by the age of two, children show interest in peers and want to play together, or alongside in the same game, instead of alone.

Low engagement in social interaction

  • Engaging in “odd’ repetitive play behaviors. These behaviors are referred to as stimming and can include waving items in front of the face, lining up toys which are not intended to be played with in that manner, or hand flapping.
  • Your child seems to be developing at the typical rate, but then regresses. For example, the child engages in clapping at least 3 times a day, but now the child won’t clap, even if asked or told to do so. This regression could also include language. For example, the child was engaging in approximations for words like “mamama” for mom or “ball” when seeing a ball, but now the language has not been observed nor have new words been created by the child.

Recognizing these signs of ASD is the first step to seeking help!

Although some children experience several of the delays, some only demonstrate one. If any of the above behaviors are observed by your child,  professionals recommend seeking out a diagnosis by your Pediatrician, Neurologist, or Psychologist in order for your child to receive the additional care and attention needed for them to have the most successful, independent, and happiest life possible.