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I am proud to be associated with ABA India, a not for profit organization engaged in studying and applying the science of behavioral analysis in treating autistic disorder. ABA India is organizing the 1st ABA Conference in India...

VVS Laxman
Ace Indian Cricketer
Good Will Ambassador for ABA - India

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ABA India is a not for profit organization supported by parents of individuals with Autism, practitioners and caregivers in this special field. I'm proud to be associated with the organization as a "Goodwill Ambassador"...

Gautam Gambhir
Ace Indian Cricketer
Good Will Ambassador for ABA - India

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I' m honored to be associated with ABA India as a "Goodwill Ambassador" for the First Asia Pacific Conference in Bangalore on December 11-12, 2010. I support the work that ABA - India, has set out to do in India...

Farouque Sheikh
Film Actor & Theatre Personality

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Importance Of Early Diagnosis:

Early diagnosis has become increasingly critical as treatments for the potentially developmental disorder advance and research begins to show that the earlier the disorder is diagnosed, the better the prognosis.

Developmental researchers increasingly find that there are critical periods of child development after which certain systems such as language, vision and motor skills become less malleable. Early diagnosis helps to take advantage of brain plasticity.

And, the same is true for the social behaviors and skills that form cornerstone of the Autism disorder. Therefore, if the diagnosis is done early on, as early as 18 months of age, it may be possible to design interventions that derail the disorder before it develops. Early diagnosis and taking part in early intervention programs have shown an increase in language development, intellectual functioning, peer interaction and a decrease in behavioral difficulties.

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Who Does Assessment And Diagnosis:

A parent is usually the first to suspect that something is wrong. Maybe the kid is old enough to speak but doesn't, doesn't seem interested in people, or behaves in other unusual ways. But Autism isn't the only problem that can cause these kinds of symptoms. For example, kids who have hearing problems might also have trouble speaking.

A diagnosis of Autism needs evaluation of the behavioral patterns, skills and needs of the child. In India, parents generally seek consultations from Child Psychiatrists and Developmental Pediatricians to find out if there is any condition affecting their child. Sometimes the medical professional clarifies the diagnosis independently. On other occasions, the medical professional arrives at the diagnosis in consultation with a professional psychologist.

Although lab tests like blood and urine tests, MRI, EEG etc are not mandatory to ascertain diagnosis of Autism, they are sometimes prescribed to rule out other medical problems.

What Steps To Take After The Diagnosis Of Autism

If your child has received an Autism diagnosis, you may feel like all of the hopes and dreams you had for your child's future have ended. These feelings of guilt, grief and fear are normal for parents when they first discover their child has Autism. However, you need to know that you're not alone and there is help out there for both you and your child.

To help you cope with the Autism diagnosis, the following are guidelines for you to take into consideration:

1. Don't Panic - Feeling overwhelmed is natural at first, but this drowning feeling will pass. You need to remember, Autism - although a challenging condition - is not a life threatening illness. Autism isn't the end of the world; take the time to calm down and rationally think things through.

2. Accept the diagnosis and take hold of the situation - When addressing the needs of children with Autism, it is important to emphasize early intervention. Early you are able to identify and start therapies with your child, you will have better likelihood of affecting her developmental trajectory. (Read more about Early Intervention)

3. Introduce a way of communication through gestures, signing, text.

4. Continue to interact with your child- In fact, now you will need to interact even more intensely with your child, in terms of talking, getting her attention, sharing smiles, showing things, etc. Don't let your child stay in her aloofness.

5. Educate yourself and ask questions - Find out everything there is to know about Autism. You can find information in books and online. The internet is a fantastic resource for Autism; research about scientific treatments and possibilities. Ask your clinician about questions and concerns that you may have.

6. Identify therapist with good credentials who can provide the essential intervention for your child, in a fun, playful manner. When you approach a therapist to work with your child, make sure they have adequate training and experience of working with children with Autism. Since resources of helping the children with Autism are still developing in India, some therapists may not have the training but are working under supervision with senior and trained therapists. As a parent, you should be aware of the training background and standing of the therapist.

7. You're not alone - There are many Autism support groups you can join both locally and online after receiving an Autism diagnosis. Talking to other parents with children with Autism, and hearing and sharing your experiences can be very helpful and therapeutic to you and your child. Seek support and guidance from parents who made improvements and progress in their children

8. Make sure you take care of yourself - The wellbeing of your child is important, but so is yours and the rest of your family. It's imperative that you find ways to relieve your stress, take breaks, and enjoy your own life. You will be able to better care for your autistic child when you are well rested.

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