Teens with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) can benefit from teen-specific treatment and therapies. While there is no “cure” for autism, early intervention and teen-specific treatment can make a big difference in the lives of teens with ASD and their families.
There are many different forms of teen autism treatment, but all share the goal of helping the teen to overcome challenges and improve functioning. An autism spectrum disorder treatment center may focus on behavior, communication, social skills, or other areas. Residential programs can be especially effective, as they provide around-the-clock support and structured activities designed to meet the needs of teens with ASD.
Signs That Your Teen Would Benefit from Autism Treatment
Your teen may benefit from teen-specific autism treatment if he or she is experiencing any of the following:
- Difficulty making and keeping friends
- Trouble with schoolwork or poor grades
- Self-harming behaviors
- Aggressive or violent behaviors
- Difficulty communicating
If you are concerned about these signs of autism in teens, talk to your teen’s doctor. A professional can help you determine if teen-specific autism treatment is right for your teen.
What to Expect from Teen Autism Treatment
The specific goals of teen autism treatment will vary depending on the teen’s individual needs. In general, teen autism treatment programs aim to improve functioning and quality of life for the teen and his or her family.
The most effective treatment plans include comprehensive programs and services for adolescents, age-appropriate treatment and therapy options, and holistic approaches that address the teen’s physical, emotional, and social needs.
Your teen’s treatment team may include doctors, therapists, counselors, and other professionals. Together, they will develop a treatment plan that meets your teen’s unique needs.
Treatment for teens with ASD may include:
- Behavior therapy – This type of therapy can help teens with ASD learn new skills and reduce problem behaviors.
- Medication management – Some teens with ASD benefit from medication to help with symptoms such as anxiety, depression, or hyperactivity.
- Individual therapy – Working one-on-one with a therapist can help your teen manage emotions, develop social skills, and cope with challenges.
- Family therapy – This type of therapy can help families learn how to support their teen with ASD and manage difficult behaviors.
- Social skills groups – These groups can help teens with ASD learn how to interact with peers and make friends.
- Functional skills training programs – These programs can help teens with ASD learn essential life skills such as cooking, cleaning, and budgeting.
Benefits of Adolescent Autism Treatment Programs
There are many potential benefits of teen-specific autism treatment programs. Teens who receive treatment may:
- Have fewer behavior problems
- Experience improved social skills
- Make progress in school
- Learn how to live independently
- Feel less anxious and stressed
- Develop better self-esteem
Improved functioning and quality of life for the teen and his or her family are the ultimate goals of teen autism treatment. With early intervention and comprehensive, teen-specific treatment, many teens with ASD can go on to lead happy, healthy, and fulfilling lives.
Treatment can also provide a number of benefits for family members of teens with ASD. Family members may feel more supported, develop improved communication skills, and will know how to help a teen with autism.
If you are concerned about your teen’s behavior or development, talk to his or her doctor. A professional can help you determine if teen-specific autism treatment is right for your teen.
Find a Teen Autism Treatment Program
If you are considering teen-specific autism treatment for your teen, it is important to find a program that meets his or her individual needs. Look for a program that offers comprehensive services and is designed specifically for teens with ASD.
Contact a center or provider in your area to learn more about teen autism treatment options and to find a program that is right for your teen.