Autism is a disability that one out of 10 families is faced with today, and the most challenging aspect of dealing with it is the area of communication, which is often the cause of a lot of frustration for parents like you.
The best way for you to handle and understand your child with autism is to get a bird’s eye view of how their brain works, which causes the seemingly chaotic way they communicate with you.
Your child is often self-absorbed and seemed to be unaware of his surroundings and the people around him.
They are usually in one corner doing repetitive actions either flapping their hands, jumping, screaming and even hurting themselves.
The problem lies with his inability to respond to your efforts to communicate with him. And this is often the cause of frustration for you.
The first step to getting them be involved in the world you live in is to understand why they act as such.
First of all your child has a problem with processing information coming from several stimuli at the same time. They are incapable of organizing each one to be able to respond to them properly.
Their brain begins to be overloaded with so much information creating a chaotic pattern that shuts off visual images and sensory stimulation and eventually shuts down.
This is their way of defense against a perceived attack because of the chaos in the outside world. To better illustrate this, their brain works like a dial up modem that when too much information are received it crashes down.
For them to cope up, they turn to physical sensations that they can easily identify with such as tapping, scratching, flapping, jumping and screaming.
They begin to associate certain things and are able to make some coherence out of it. So instead of communicating in words, they communicate through their actions.
So for you as a parent, it is important to understand how they are feeling and what gestures or actions they are using to communicate it with you.
Since, they are unable to communicate in your level of comprehension; it is you who will go to their level so you will be on the same leveled ground.
Your role as the person to respond to his actions will confirm whether he is understood or not. If he is understood then he will be ready to move on to another sound or movement that you both can use to better communicate with each other.
It will also require that you set varying tones and tempo to your voice or if tapping is his way of communication, you will have to use varying tempo to indicate varying emotions and instructions.
If this is done consistently, the child will later communicate using eye contact and will show more social responsiveness and eventually be interested in interacting with the outside world other than his own.