Autism Specific Therapy
The needs of individuals with autism vary enormously from individual to individual, and are very different from the needs of people without autism.
There are many types of therapy which can dramatically help a person with autism by developing certain skills, addressing issues and improving self confidence. Many kinds of therapy can be helpful to people with autism, including; e.g. art therapy, music therapy, physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy.
The needs of individuals with autism vary enormously from individual to individual, and are very different from the needs of people without autism, so selecting the right therapy and the right therapist is critical to get the most out of therapy.
1. Ensure the therapist is qualified in his or her field
Anyone (with an autism spectrum disorder or otherwise) considering therapy should ensure that the therapist is professionally qualified and experienced enough to offer that therapy.
You may want to ask:
- What qualifications do you hold?
- Do you belong to a professional body?
- How long have you been practising?
- How can you show me evidence of your credentials?
- How do you evaluate progress?
Some therapists will have their certificates hanging on the wall and you might also be able to contact the professional body to verify that they are officially registered.
2. If possible find a therapist with experience in treating people with autism
You will also need to know if they can work with someone with autism. Some questions you could ask would be:
- How would you communicate with someone who has few verbal skills?
- How would you work with someone with sensory issues?
- How would you work with someone’s specific anxieties?
- How many people with autism have you worked with?
It would help the therapist if you could be specific about the issues of autism experienced by you (or the individual you are asking about).
Once the therapist has begun working, it is helpful to the therapist if you tell them when they are working in the most suitable way for you (or the person you are representing.
Throughout the therapy process a dialogue with your therapist will be invaluable, if you feel that the therapy is not progressing, be sure to express any concerns you might have. A good therapist will always be happy to talk the treatment through with you.