Halloween Safety

BOO! Did we scare you?! Halloween is one of the most exciting times for children of all ages. Candy, costumes, and excitement allow your child to explore their dreams and interact with people of all types! While Halloween is a holiday filled with fun, it can also lead to some unique challenges for parents of children with autism. Here are some simple precautions for parents, to help ensure an exciting and safe Halloween!

 children with hats - halloween safety

 

  1. Alternative trick-or-treating: Many churches and organizations offer alternative trick or treating in a more family-friendly environment. More often than not, these events take place before dark, so everyone can be involved. Unlike traditional trick-or-treating, events like these have very little sensory overload like flashing lights or loud noises. This is perfect for kids with autism. Some include trunk-or-treats where those involved bring various treats and place them in the trunk of their cars for the kiddos to walk around and have some fun! Many times there will be fun games for the family or even a pumpkin patch!
  2. Buddy system: Safety in numbers is always a great policy, and is imperative for Halloween. By going in groups, you are providing safety as well as opportunities to socially interact with kids from their school or neighborhood!  
  3. Candy checks: Checking your child’s candy bags is an important step to ensure their safety. It protects them from all kinds of dangers including allergies, already opened candy, and any other concerns. This is a very simple task that can be forgotten amidst the Halloween craziness, but make sure your child understands the importance of not eating the candy before you check it.
  4. Emergency plans: Preparing emergency plans before Halloween is a great way to prepare your family for the holiday. Some simple ideas include reviewing phone numbers, practicing your route beforehand, and establish scheduled meet-up times throughout the night to check-in on each other to make sure everyone is having the most fun in the safest way!
  5. Stay in areas familiar to your child: Halloween is filled with extra stimuli, decorations, and people. As a result it is easier for your child to become distracted or overwhelmed. Staying in familiar areas allows you to gain control over the situation by feeling more confident and close to home where you can appropriately remove your child if they begin to experience sensory overload.

children with baskets - halloween safety

Managing Insurance Open Enrollment: Pro-tips and Advice

Fall is finally here!

As the cool air blows and light jackets emerge out of our closets, open enrollment is just around the corner. Insurance can be tricky. While making sure you are getting the right plan for you and your family, take these ideas into consideration:

  • How often you tend to visit the doctor
  • If a member of your family has a special need
  • Whether you anticipate a change in your health care needs
  • Whether you have more dependents to cover, like a new baby
  • If you take regular prescription medications
  • How much the plan will cost you

These concepts are very important when considering new insurance plans, because you want to make sure your family is taken care of in an affordable way. To verify if your prospective or current plan covers autism treatment, review the policy booklet for the terms: Autism Therapy, Applied Behavior Therapy, or ABA Therapy. If your booklet isn’t readily available, please contact the provider and ask if they provide services.

Cayer Behavioral Group (CBG) works with a variety of insurance plans and we handle all of the processing and billing for your child’s Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) services. Cayer Behavioral Group accepts the following insurance plans:

If your insurance is not listed, please contact our office and we will be able to discuss other potential options for services. Once you fill out CBG’s new client paperwork, our billing department will contact the insurance provider to verify benefits for therapy, will submit services outlined by therapists to the insurance company, and send an invoice for the copayment or deductible amount due on the 10th and 25th of every month.

We are dedicated to serving our clients and their families to the best of our ability. If you have any questions pertaining to CBG’s behavior therapy services or billing process, please do not hesitate to contact our office. Happy insurance shopping! #autismawarenesseveryday

Storm Preparedness Tips – Be Ready and Be Safe

Whew! Happy October, everyone! Can you believe we are already here? While reflecting on the past month, we realized that Mother Earth showed us her wrath with many, many storms! In Tallahassee were lucky enough to bypass much of the damage from major hurricanes, Harvey, Irma, and Maria. However, we know that many were not so fortunate. We want to make sure as many people are as safe and aware as possible. Preparing for a storm while acknowledging the needs of your child with autism can be a hard pill to swallow, but that is why we are here to give some tips and tricks to make the process easier!

A great start to preparing for a storm is to have open conversation with your kiddos. In case they have a fear of storms, make sure to always validate their fears while assuring them that they are safe. You could even show them that the sounds of thunder and lightning by mimicking the sounds with pots and pans or other items around the house. Once they realize they can make the sound on their own, it won’t be such a scary unknown.

Having open conversation and presenting information in a way your kids can understand is another great way to ease anxiety. Weather Wiz Kids is a wonderful website that explains all aspects of weather in a fun way not only your kids, but for you, too!! You can check out their website here.

Prepping for picky eaters can be a doozy when storms come around. Make sure you have enough of your child’s preferred foods for all necessary food groups. Ensuring they have plenty vitamins and protein is always important, but finding these in non-perishables can be tricky! The key is to prep early and prep a lot. If your child’s favorite veggie is green beans, don’t be afraid to get 10 cans of green beans because there is no such thing as too much!

Finally, make sure you and your family are having fun! Stock up on card games, board games and your kiddo’s favorite sensory toys. Mad Libs, flashlight tag and charades are fun ways to engage the whole family if there is no power. Check out this website for 100 things to do with your family when there is no power!

Storms can bring many unknowns, so we need to make sure we have done everything in our power to prepare. Once that is done, the rest is up to Mother Nature herself! If you are in the projected path for Tropical Storm Nate, please stay safe! We want to extend our thoughts to all those affected by the 2017 storms. If you would like to help those in need, please visit the Red Cross for more information. #autismawarenesseveryday