Treatment Services for Autism
Conditions We Treat
We treat children with developmental disabilities, including:
- Autistic disorder
- Asperger’s disorder
- Other autism spectrum disorders (ASDs)
- Developmental delays
- Learning disabilities
- Intellectual disabilities
- Genetic and chromosomal disorders resulting in developmental delays (e.g. Fragile X, Down Syndrome, Velocardiofacial Syndrome, Williams Syndrome, Prader Willi, and other chromosome and gene disorders)
- Psychiatric disorders that exist in addition to the developmental disabilities that are often a result of them (comorbidities).
Treatment Goals and Services
Our team emphasizes treatment and support to:
- Alleviate the underlying developmental disorder
- Target psychiatric conditions that exist along with the developmental disability and are often a result of it (comorbidities). These conditions may include mood disorders, anxiety disorders, ADHD, behavioral problems, or social cognitive difficulties that are specific to children with developmental delays.
We work with families to:
- Identify specific behavioral concerns at home
- Perform a functional assessment of problem behaviors
- Develop behavior plans for home
- Consult on school problems
- Develop behavior plans to build skills, such as social and communication skills
Evidence-based behavioral treatment of ASD using Pivotal Response Therapy (PRT).
PRT is a form of Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) – a broad group of behavioral treatments commonly used to treat children with autism. It is designed as a short-term treatment and can be done individually or in a group.
PRT is a parent-focused approach. Our team will develop an individualized plan based on your child’s needs. You will learn to guide your child’s skill development (such as communication and social skills) during play and other naturally motivating activities at home.
Ongoing feedback and support is provided as you practice those techniques in the clinic and at home. You will also learn how to apply those techniques to teach new skills.
Individual counseling/psychotherapy for school-age children and adolescents with Asperger’s and high-functioning autism (HFA).
Some children and adolescents benefit from meeting with a therapist one-on-one. This can help to address issues such as low self-esteem, worries or fears, sadness or depression, or understanding a diagnosis. It can also help patients learn some social skills and social perspective-taking skills.
Some children with ASD may benefit from medication. These are typically used to address specific problem areas, such as inattention, anxiety, aggression, repetitive movements and others.
Other Medical Services
Packard Children’s has a variety of other medical services for difficulties associated with ASD.
- Communication disorders, motor deficits and sensory issues are typically addressed through Speech-Language Therapy and Occupational Therapy.
- Our Child Neurology and Genetics/Medical Clinic address questions about specific features of ASD and possible neurological or genetic causes.
In most cases, these clinics require a referral from another physician.
A new patient appointment request can be initiated by parents, or through a referral from a physician.
When you call the new patient (intake) coordinator, you will be asked to provide a brief summary of the specific reason treatment is being sought. We will then speak with your insurance company, and call you back to schedule an initial intake appointment with a clinician.
During the intake appointment, the clinician will conduct a detailed interview to determine the most appropriate treatment approach. The clinician will work with you and your family to identify appropriate treatment goals and develop a treatment plan. This process is customized to meet your child's needs.