Eight tips for children with autism to live in a healthy environment during quarantine
Isolation has a special impact on children with an autism spectrum disorder. Tips to cope with it in the best way
Autism is a spectrum, which means that it manifests itself in different ways. A diagnosis can range from mild to severe, and although children who have it (that is, they are on the spectrum) usually show similar features, each case is different. While one child may rarely speak and have difficulty learning how to read and write, another may have many skills and may attend classes at a mainstream school. Another child may be so sensitive to the feel of the fabric that all labels must be cut before he wears the clothes, while his friend who also has an autism spectrum condition (CEA) may not have any sensory issues.
In this context, Célica Ysraelit, a neurologist at Fleni, a member of the Brincar Foundation Advisory Council and also the mother of a teenager with autism, listed tips to help create a calmer and more suitable environment for children with disorder of the Autistic Spectrum (CEA) can cope with preventive and compulsory social isolation in a healthy way.
Communication tips about the current context:
According to their age, children should be explained what the world is currently experiencing. The specialist emphasized that a specific term of completion of the quarantine should not be mentioned.
We must explain to them that at some point they will return to school and that this situation will end, although it is not known when it will be, to reinforce it constantly. For this, a resource that will serve are visual aids and simple words to explain the virus and how to take care of ourselves by staying at home, using a mask and washing our hands.
Generate routines In order for people with CEA to feel that their contributions are useful and that they are proud to carry out an activity at home, it is important to generate an agenda with the activities of the day and occupy it with tasks appropriate to their age, such as:
Not over demand Fathers and mothers are not therapists. They must be patient and understand that this is a transitory moment. According to the professional, it is very important to reserve your own spaces and take turns among family members who can help.
“In some cases, the achievements that have been taking may go back or may have stereotypes, which are the body or vocal movements that people with autism usually have, and in this situation of greater stress they can be generated more frequently. You have to be tolerant in this situation and accompany them in this new normality by being patient, "explained Ysraelit.
Be aware that they might react in some particular way to some stimuli. And it is that people with autism feel and live the world in a different way, so there are sensory stimuli that they can experience as an aggression and generate an enormous disagreement. Some of them are:
Do not generalize: not all people are the same, so it is important not to generalize and to know or ask them what they like and what they do not like.