Common Autistic Behaviors to Expect:
Being the parent of a child with autism is a lot harder than one could imagine.
Autism comes in varying degrees, but the fact is all the possible behavioral issues can be traced back to some type of over-stimulation of the senses. An autistic child finds it hard to deal with some of his or her sensory issues.
The behavior that some children display is just coping mechanisms that help them regain control of their senses. These coping mechanisms, or self-control methods, can be a little hard to deal with. Remember than an autistic child feels everything, including any signs of anxiety or fear from his or her parents.
A parent should be on the look-out when the repetitive action is interrupted. An interruption means that the child will be at the mercy of over-stimulation. The dreadful feeling forces the child to attempt to regain control in a drastic matter, such as hand-clapping or knee banging. But the actions can get more severe if the stimulation is more intense. This means that you might see self-injuring actions, like the biting of his or her own skin, head banging, or even hair pulling.
How a Parent Can Handle Common Behaviors
One of the most common issues that an autistic child may have is trouble sleeping. The hyper-sensitivity of your child may make it hard for him or her to fall asleep. It is important to keep your child active during the day to ensure that he or she is tired by the end of the day.
Try not to pander to the child if he or she wakes. This enables irregular sleeping patterns. What you want to do is show the child a picture of the sun, and tell the child that he or she can rise when the sun is up.
Try to use a white noise machine to prevent noises from waking the child up.
Another method that you can try is introducing numbers. Teach the child that counting to a certain number indicates a halt to his or her behavior. Keep in mind that it may take a while before the child understands that counting to a certain number means that he or she needs to stop an action. But once you successfully introduce this concept to the child, then he or she will be easier to calm down.
The best advice that could be given to a parent about an autistic child is that it is important to avoid triggering a tantrum. This could be as easy as restricting the child’s outings. Another trigger is usually noise. Do your best to purchase double-pane windows that are sound-proof, and make sure that your lawn is well-kept. Lawns act as sound wave barriers, making sounds less audible.
There are a few things that you can do as a parent to prevent behaviors associated with autism. You can talk to your doctor or autism consultant for more suggestions.