Health Watch - Autism: Caring for the Autistic Child

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This week on Health Watch, we’re talking about autism, in recognition of Autism Awareness Month. With all the concerns of diagnosing autism and then finding treatment, parents of children with autism shouldn’t forget that they’re still parents as they care for and love their children.

Caring for a child with autism can be stressful, but Dr. Catherine Karni, a child psychiatrist at UT Southwestern Medical Center, says parents shouldn’t give up hope. She suggests that parents consider how the diagnosis specifically affects their child’s daily functioning. How does the child communicate his or her needs? What steps can parents take to effectively communicate with their child? Parents may need to research the special education process and find a family advocate to attend meetings with the school. Above all, parents shouldn’t let a diagnosis of autism keep them from parenting, loving, playing with or disciplining their child.

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April 2011


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