Picky Eater Strategies

3 Picky Eater Strategies that Work, by Sarah Remmer. They may work for you … they may not, but they’re practical and simple, and similar to what we’ve used in feeding therapy (SOS approach by Dr Kay Toomey- Sequential Oral Sensory).

Just for interest, this post has the 32 steps to eating chart, plus some description about how it was implemented.

Progressive Muscle Relaxation

Progressive Muscle Relaxation Script (SkinNurse blog). While I understand the benefits of progressive muscle relaxation, I haven’t found too many scripts that appeal to me. I really like this one- it’s very practical, and something that children could easily relate to, eg squeezing a lemon, stretching like a cat, chewing a hard carrot, squishing toes in mud etc.

Female adult diagnosis

Parents often become aware of their own Autistic traits following the diagnosis of their children, when they realise that they share many of the same characteristics. Some identify strongly with what they’re reading and learning, and self-diagnose; others seek a psychologist for an official diagnosis. Clinical understanding of the female presentation of Autism is still very much a work-in-progress, so finding a clinician with skills to diagnose adult women can apparently be quite challenging!

I was very impressed with this article by Tania Marshall – Adult Autism Assessment in Females. It gives some good background information, details about what’s included in an adult diagnostic assessment (and why!), and “What’s Next” after diagnosis.

While it may be tempting to check out some of the online Autism tests, most of them are only indicative at best, and often gender-biased. Cynthia Kim, from Musings of an Aspie blog, has written good critiques of some of the more popular tests, including Autism Quotient, Empathising Quotient, Systematising Quotient and Aspie Quiz.

Brave program online

The BRAVE Program is an interactive, online program for the prevention and treatment of childhood and adolescent anxiety. The programs are free, and provide ways for children and teenagers to better cope with their worries.

We were quite impressed with it, as it used many of the same effective strategies we’d seen in our daughter’s OT sessions- and is online and free!

ASD in Qld

My child has Autism Spectrum Disorder (information for Queensland families of children aged 9-17) is a succinct but thorough booklet with information about ASD, the diagnostic process, financial support, access to specialists and financial support for people in rural/remote areas, how to find therapists, services and support available in Queensland, school options, and transition from school. While some of the information is Queensland-specific, it is still useful as an overview to people in other states.

Healthcare Toolkit

AASPIRE Healthcare Toolkit: Primary Care Resources for Adults on the Autism Spectrum and their Primary Care Providers. There are two key sections- one for Patients & Supports, and the other for Healthcare Providers. The first section contains forms and worksheets, that outline the steps required for different parts of accessing healthcare (eg making an appointment, what to bring to the appointment, symptoms worksheet, things to do after the appointment)- in detail, using simple language. The Autism Healthcare Accommodations Tool (AHAT) creates a customised accommodations report for individuals to give to their healthcare providers. There is also step-by-step information for navigating the primary healthcare system, tips for staying healthy, explanations about an individual’s rights in healthcare etc.

In the Healthcare Providers section, I particularly liked the section about Caring for Patients on the Autism Spectrum. So many of the issues raised in articles like this and this are addressed here, eg don’t rely on spoken communication, use precise language, allow time for slower processing speed and real-time communication, minimise distracting sensory inputs etc- all with practical tips accompanying the description.

A very useful resource!