Autism can be difficult to detect in children because there is no medical test, like a blood test, to diagnose the disorder. Instead, doctors must diagnose ASD by looking at the child’s developmental history, observing the children’s behavior, and listening to the concerns of the parents.
Ascend Autism is dedicated to elevating the outcomes of children diagnosed with autism and has targeted intervention programs. Not having an awareness of the signs can cost time in addressing an actual diagnosis and beginning addressing life with autism. Specific treatment is best at certain ages. Targeted intervention programs have been known to provide significant improvements in social communication skills for participants. As with programs to address any disorder, it is always best to implement an autism spectrum disorder treatment program as soon as possible.
Ascend Autism is dedicated to elevating the outcomes of children diagnosed with autism and has a targeted intervention program for anyone in need.
Autism Detection Factors
There is no one cause of autism. Research suggests that autism develops from a combination of genetic, non-genetic, or environmental influences. Generally, risk factors can include:
- Genetic changes that occur during fertilization
- Advanced age of either parent
- Pregnancy or birth complications
- Multiple pregnancies with less than one year gap
The key is to detect signs of ASD as close to birth as possible so that intervention methods can begin. Signs of ASD that generally do not appear in other children can include:
- An almost obsessive desire for repetition and habit
- Facial and physical gestures not matching the tone of voice and what is said
- Difficulty with simple back-and-forth communication
Applied Behavior Analysis
Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) is the study of human behavior with the goal of understanding and improving behavioral outcomes. There is no specific recommendation for ABA therapy duration, as that is determined by individual need. Ascend uses ABA as the foundation of its treatment programs as it has been accepted as the most effective form of intervention for all ages.
Aspects of the Targeted Intervention Program
Compared to the Early Intervention Program, children in the targeted intervention program generally receive fewer therapy hours per week (typically ten to twenty hours per week) and will focus more on functional activities, particularly communication and social interactions. Targeted intervention programs have been shown to improve social, language, and cognitive skills.
During this program, everyone learns to interact in socially meaningful ways, which includes:
- Initiation of joint attention – directing another’s attention to an item of interest
- Affect sharing – sharing emotions through facial expressions while maintaining eye contact
- Social imitation – repeating another’s actions while demonstrating social connectedness
The interventions are designed to encourage making frequent and deliberate efforts by the children to engage with others and have shown gains in joint attention, imitation, social engagement, and symbolic and functional play. The targeted intervention focuses on outcomes of ASD-specific characteristics.
Find Out How Ascend Autism’s Targeted Intervention Program Can Help You
If you’ve recently discovered that your child has ASD or are looking for a targeted intervention program, Ascend can help you and your family. Our programs are tailored to each child by a Board Certified Behavioral Analyst (BCBA). We offer in-home and telehealth services to maximize opportunities. Ascend also works with schools to ensure that all aspects of life and the coaching are working together.