What to Do If You Think Your Child Has Autism

mom with child

If you’re worried that your child might be autistic and are terrified of finding out the answer — not to mention confused and overwhelmed about what to do next — you’re not alone. An autism diagnosis comes with a whole range of emotions, from grief and loss to fear, anger and helplessness.

So what do you do if you think your child has autism? Here are a few steps to take as recommended by the autism educational site Synapse.

1. Get a definitive diagnosis. It’s important to know for sure that your child has autism, and you need a proper assessment about what kind of autism it is. Don’t settle for an inconclusive diagnosis. Take your son or daughter to another doctor to get a firm answer if you have to.

2. Start early intervention programs for your child. As soon as you have confirmation that your child is autistic, get him into an early intervention program tailored to his specific situation and needs. Early intervention has been shown to help a great deal in an autistic child’s development and growth and minimize the delays that accompany autism.

3. Join a parents support group. Parenting a child with autism is not easy and comes with a whole array of challenges. Talking to other parents in your shoes by joining a support group for moms and dads of autistic children will be a great source of encouragement, comfort, information and inspiration.

4. Learn strategies for coping with behavior and communication issues. Autistic children have very specific behavioral and communication issues, so learning strategies for managing and handling those will be extremely helpful when it comes to parenting your child.

5. Educate yourself about autism. One of the best ways to tackle autism in your family is to know it inside and out. Do as much reading and research on it as you can so that you are ultra familiar with the condition and the particulars of the kind your child has. It will go a long way in helping you raise an autistic child.

Do you have an autistic child or do you know someone who does? Do you have any other advice to add?