Autism fact: 1 in every 100 people have some form of autism. Add to that their family and friends and everyone knows somebody – diagnosed or not – who is affected by this.
Be aware that routine is very important to people with autism and change can be very disturbing. Take this into account when you interact with them. Take your time to alert them to anything that could change their routine.
- Traffic is causing you to be late for an appointment? Call the person you’re supposed to met, preferably before the time you’re supposed to meet up. This will lessen the anxiety if you’re not at the appointment
- If a child with autism is given a new babysitter, make time to introduce the child to the babysitter, possibly before the actual night you will be leaving. Have this person be part of the night routine a few days before the actual night so the babysitter can get used to the routine
- Make lists and use pictograms, depending on the age of the child, to teach routines. Be prepared to follow them at all times so make them doable on a daily basis! If need be you can have separate routines for weekdays and weekenddays. This will give your child (and sometimes adult) something to hold onto.
I’m sure you can come up with other ways to give your child/friend/acquaintance a safety blanket? Simply being aware of how disturbing a change in routine can be will help you deal with it.
Comment with how you would deal with a change in daily routine and I’ll award a lucky commenter with a $10 Dreamspinner Press gift card to spend on whatever you like at the store!