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Treatment for autism, despite not curing this syndrome, is capable of improving communication, concentration and reducing repetitive movements, thus improving the quality of life of the autistic person and his family.
For an effective treatment, it is recommended that it be done with a team composed of a doctor, physical therapist, psychotherapist, occupational therapist and speech therapist, who indicate specific therapies for each patient, and often must be done for life. In addition, care with food and activities such as music therapy and hippotherapy can also contribute a lot to the improvement of symptoms.
Thus, some important strategies for treating autism, whether in mild or severe cases, include:
Although there are no specific drugs to treat and cure autism, the doctor may recommend drugs that can combat symptoms that directly interfere with people's quality of life, such as aggression, hyperactivity, compulsiveness, difficulty dealing with frustration, anxiety, depression and sleep disorders, such as clozapine, risperidone and aripiprazole.
It is important that, even with the use of medication indicated by the doctor, other strategies are adopted that help relieve symptoms and, thus, be possible in the future to reduce the dose or suspend the medication.
It is important that the child's diet is well diversified and rich in vitamins and minerals, so that he althy growth can be ensured.
It is common for children with autism spectrum disorder to have more changes in eating habits, and may refuse food because of its texture, taste or smell more often.Thus, it is important to be aware of what the child refuses and how he is prepared and try to get him to consume this food in other ways. See in the video below some ways to help your child eat:
3. Speech Therapy
The follow-up with the speech therapist is important to improve the verbal communication of the child with the autistic spectrum with other people. During the sessions, several exercises are carried out that can help the child to increase their vocabulary and improve the intonation of the voice, and games and games can be performed to attract the child's attention.
4. Music Therapy
Music helps children understand emotions, increasing their interaction with the world around them. The objective is not to learn to sing or play any instrument, it is only important to know how to listen and express yourself through the sounds that the instruments can produce and also through dance movements, for example, in a light and relaxed environment.
Psychotherapy must be guided by the psychologist and can be carried out alone or in a group, with weekly meetings. Behavioral therapy can be used, for example, which can help you get dressed yourself.
6. Occupational Therapy
Occupational therapy is also indicated in the treatment of autism spectrum disorder, and is often indicated in association with psychotherapy. The objective of occupational therapy is to improve the person's quality of life and encourage autonomy, which is done through technologies and activities that require the person's action, as well as activities that promote the person's adaptation process to society and self-confidence..
It can be guided by a specialist physiotherapist and during the sessions several games and games can be performed that can help the child focus their attention on just one thing at a time, tying their shoes, contributing to better control of movements, fighting repetitive movements, which are common in cases of autism.
Therapy with horses is very useful to improve the body's righting reaction when the child is on top of the animal, motor coordination, breathing control and developing the autistic's self-confidence. Sessions usually last between 30 minutes and 1 hour. Learn more about hippotherapy.
Which doctor to consult
The physician who usually initiates the diagnosis of autism is the pediatrician, however, other professionals such as the clinical psychiatrist or pediatric neurologist are usually needed to analyze and guide the best forms of treatment.
How to take care of an autistic child at home
Some important precautions to be taken at home to improve the quality of life of children with autism are:
- Observe if the child has greater facility for a certain task, because many autistic people have an aptitude for mathematics, music, drawing or computer science, for example;
- Respect routines, as the autistic person does not tolerate changes well;
- Avoid having unnecessary furniture and objects at home, to protect them from accidents;
- Develop good sleep habits, respecting bedtime, with less intense lights and light meals before going to bed.
Another important tip is to avoid places like cafeterias and supermarkets, as there are many stimuli in these places, such as very bright lights and a lot of noise, which can cause discomfort in the child.