• The Role of Positive Parenting in ABA Therapy

    The way that parents respond to their children makes a tremendous difference when it comes to the effectiveness of treatment for developmental disorders. One of the key themes of ABA therapy is positive reinforcement. Rather than focusing on undesirable behaviors and how to correct them, the recommended approach is to reward desirable behaviors that are incompatable or functionally equivalent to the behaviors one wishes to eliminate. By providing parents with clear, repeatable methods that support desirable behaviors and remove the impetus for challenging behaviors, the learning structures provided by ABA therapy can help this process along.

    The team at STAR of CA is dedicated to providing your family with high-quality resources for dealing with developmental disorders such as autism spectrum disorder (ASD). If you’re in need of ABA therapy in the Ventura area, call (805) 644-7827 to find out more about the services we offer.

  • The FDA Is Cracking Down on Unproven ASD Therapies: What You Need to Know

    Autism spectrum disorder, or ASD, is a developmental disorder that occurs in at least 1 out of every 68 children born in the United States, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention . One of the unfortunate effects of the disorder’s ubiquity is the spate of products that purport to cure it. Treatments and purported cures for ASD and similar disorders are extremely common, to the point that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has started warning consumers about them. Here are some important facts that you should be aware of.

    ASD has no known cure. To date, no cure has been discovered for ASD or any related developmental disorders. ASD appears to be a lifelong condition that originates prior to birth. Any product or treatment that is advertised as a cure for ASD is simply attempting to exploit the hopes of families who are living with the condition. Even proponents of Applied Behavior Analysis, which has been deemed the only effective and medical necessary ASD treatment, stop short of calling ABA a “cure.”

    False ASD cures are easy to spot. The FDA has come down hard on a number of products that advertise themselves as cures for ASD. These include clay baths, oxygen therapy, and chelating agents. As a rule, if a product claims to be a “miracle cure” or promises to cure a long-term condition quickly, you should be skeptical of it.

    ASD symptoms can be managed. There are a number of products on the market that have been approved by the FDA for controlling the symptoms of ASD, as opposed to treating the condition itself. For example, early and intensive ABA treatment has been shown to remediate the most significant symptoms of ASD. Additionally, antipsychotic drugs may be prescribed for children with ASD who have persistent moodiness and irritability. However, it’s important to only use these drugs with the guidance of an experienced mental health professional.

    STAR of CA is committed to providing children with ASD and other developmental disorders with the quality services they deserve, as well as offering families the resources they need. We serve Ventura County and the surrounding area. To learn more about our services, call us at (805) 644-7827.

  • Parent Empowerment After an ASD Diagnosis

    No parent ever expects to hear that their child has a developmental disorder such as autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Once the diagnosis is given, parents may feel overwhelmed by the question of what to do next. A parent who sets out to find the best treatment for a child’s ASD will find numerous treatments to choose from—including, unfortunately, many bogus “cures” for the disorder. In this video, Jane Asher of the Association for Science in Autism Treatment (ASAT) explains the organization’s mission and how they work to help parents who are looking for reliable information about ASD.

    STAR of CA provides families in the Ventura area and beyond with the resources they need to live with ASD. We are committed to giving families the best possible information based on the most up-to-date research about developmental disorders. To contact us today, call (805) 644-7827.

  • Easing Anxieties About Changing Your Routine

    For children who have autism spectrum disorder (ASD), changes in routine can be distressing. For instance, a child might become upset upon going to an unfamiliar place such as a doctor’s office, doing a certain activity at a different time of day, or even eating a new food. If you want to minimize the stress that your child feels upon encountering changes to his or her routine, there are a number of strategies that you can try.

    It tends to be helpful to introduce changes gradually. If you will be taking your child to a new school, for example, you might visit the school a few times together at quiet times of day so that your child can get used to the new environment. Many children also appreciate having a daily timetable that tells them when each different event of the day will happen. Incorporating new activities into this timetable can help your child acclimate to them.

    Since May 2006, STAR of CA has been providing important mental health resources to communities in Ventura County and beyond. We are committed to providing the best services possible to educate and assist families who are dealing with ASD and related disorders. Call (805) 644-7827 for more information about the services we offer.