HELP FOR PARENTS OF CHILDREN WITH ASPERGER'S & HIGH-FUNCTIONING AUTISM

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Sleep Problems in Aspergers Children

Many children with Aspergers and High Functioning Autism have problems sleeping through the night, or getting to sleep. This is due in large part to sensory issues. Sensory dysfunction is typically an issue for Aspergers children. Many parents are forced to try medications, or natural supplements (e.g., melatonin) to try to regulate sleep patterns. These may be beneficial. Using sensory integration therapy can also be helpful so that the child can learn to regulate his or her activity level.

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24 comments:

Anonymous said...

ugh my son had the sleep issue from the outset. He never did sleep through the night as a baby, toddler, of adolescent. He's 12 now, and it wasn't until we began seeing a new psychiatrist when he was 10, that he got some relief. The doc advised us to give him Melatonin, which is an all-natural supplement sold OTC. It helps him get to sleep. He also put him on Seroquel which is a mood stabilizer that, when taken at night, helps you stay asleep all night. It's now been 2 years of (mostly) restful nights.

Anonymous said...

Melatonin meltaway strips...

Anonymous said...

Melatonin works for mine very well

Anonymous said...

Melatonin or isotonix tryptophan.. These both work great..

Anonymous said...

Melatonin works wonders!

Anonymous said...

Routine and melatonin. Looks like we have a pattern here....

Anonymous said...

My son has been on Clonidine for 2 yrs and finally can get sleep! I've also heard many good things about Melatonin. Good luck!

Anonymous said...

we did melatonin and found a big camping sleeping bag. he cocoons up in there and is allowed one lego guy to fiddle with. we hung christmas lights up to replace All the lights on (fear of the dark).all those combined have helped sooo much!

Anonymous said...

I'm in the UK and am waiting diagnosis, melatonin isn't available over the counter. Any advice on wot to order online? Xx

Anonymous said...

And I'm at my wits end, lucky if we get 4-5hrs a night. :o( x

Anonymous said...

I've looked online and there are so many different kinds, I was looking at an orange syrup (as my boy is only 5) thought it looked better as he won't swallow capsules xx

Anonymous said...

Well there is a lot here about melatonin, we are trying to avoid using medication it supplements of any kind. My daughter has struggled so much in this area. Her OT therapist suggested using her weighted blanket. She has slept through the night ever since we started. She loves it!!! Her blanket also allows us to snuggle, something she has never been able to do. The blanket weighs 10% of her body weight + 1lb.

Anonymous said...

We stop all electronics at supper time (6pm usually). The Dr. Prescribed cookies & milk, so he gets that at 7:30 then knows its bedtime. He sleeps with A side lamp on & "little Einsteins" on the TV. He is very consistent, but the routine works. If he can't sleep he can lay In bed & play with a pencil, but no video games. We tuck him in with a layer of blankets of his choosing. A few years ago we had to read to him & hold him til' he fell asleep. He's 9 & that's changing as he gets older.Good luck.
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Anonymous said...

My boy won't lie still, tried the hot bath, weighted blanket, massage etc, he usually has a massive meltdown around 11pm and finally tires to sleep around midnight, even then we have to leave his tv on low incase he wakes up. We use phenergan intermittently as if we use it too often it has no effect so maybe 2 days out of 7. The Dr here are very quick to pass the buck, he is currently on a 12mth waitin list till next appointment, If I look behind I can see the end of my tether somewhere in the distance xx

Anonymous said...

I was gonna say Melatonin as well but it looks like everyone knows. My 4 yr old granddaughter was gettin up 4 to 6 times a night before a co-worker told me about it. Melatonin is the best over the counter drug ever invented!!

MrsKTurner said...

Melatonin worked wonders for us as well. We used clonadine for a year but he began having side effects from it. The best thing we ever did was take him to a natural health doctor. He tested positive for heavy metals and went through a slow/gentle chelation (detox) for six months using mainly cilantro and fresh water algae pills. He also takes supplants: fish oil, b vitamin complex, and cerebro calm. My son is a different child now. He was retested and doesn't even fall on the spectrum now. He had been diagnosed with asperger's, ADHD, depression, anxiety, and OCD. I give all thanks to Jesus for answering our prayers of getting to the root of his problems.

Anonymous said...

We don't use melatonin here... I put pressure on my son's shoulders and hip....he lays on his side... this seems to help. He has a weighted neck wrap that I lay on him from shoulder down to hip...3lbs...

Anonymous said...

If some of you are against medicines.....melatonin is a natural chemical found in all of our bodies it helps regulate when our bodies get tired and a lot of children with special needs and older adults produce less than they should...so...I give my boys 1 Mg 1 hour before bed and they chew it up with a drink and it has saved my sanity...
.the only side affect I have encountered is you have to stick to a routine timed bedtime after giving meds b/c once it kicks in they will be tired and start to get grumpy.....good luck

Anonymous said...

I've seen some people recommend Melatonin, however from what I understand, it is really helpful for helping someone FALL asleep, not STAY asleep.

Anonymous said...

My son has a "sound machine" that he listens to when going to bed. He likes to listen to the crickets. This is something I started with him as a baby. It may help, they have different sounds, maybe one would be soothing for your son.

Anonymous said...

We used a mixture of things. We did use Melatonin. We also stopped the use of electronics (games, iPods, etc.) after dinner time. We stuck to a routine. The biggest thing that helped our son was a suggestion from his OT. She suggested that we "brush" him an hour or so before he went to bed. We bought one of those soft brushes for babies (like the one I was given to by a nurse after giving birth to my son) at his OT center. We brush his arms, legs and back with the brush. 10 downward strokes per body part. She told us to be pretty firm when brushing, not to do it lightly or it wouldn't work. This acts as a "de-stimulator". We did it in the morning before school, immediately after school and before bedtime. It worked like a charm.

Kristina Lynema said...

I wish I had known years ago that my son had Aspergers and how to deal with no sleep. He was almost 7 when he slept through the night for the first time. He keeps his large TV on all night in order to do it. He is so scared of the dark that nightlights didn't help. He also has a hard time with any noises if the room is silent...

Dreamtree said...

For our son, creating a safe feeling sleep environment is important -- he falls asleep with the room light on. He also likes to fall asleep listening to his favorite music. The music is especially important, because it gives his mind something to track while he slowly releases focus.

Dreamtree said...

Similar to the cricket sounds another commenter mentioned, our son listens to his favorite music as he falls asleep. This gives his mind something to track as he releases consciousness. Of course, until he was older, I also read to him at bedtime, which was a good start for the winding down process.

My child has been rejected by his peers, ridiculed and bullied !!!

Social rejection has devastating effects in many areas of functioning. Because the Aspergers child tends to internalize how others treat him, rejection damages self-esteem and often causes anxiety and depression. As the child feels worse about himself and becomes more anxious and depressed – he performs worse, socially and intellectually.

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How to Prevent Meltdowns in Aspergers Children

Meltdowns are not a pretty sight. They are somewhat like overblown temper tantrums, but unlike tantrums, meltdowns can last anywhere from ten minutes to over an hour. When it starts, the Asperger's child is totally out-of-control. When it ends, both you and the Asperger’s child are totally exhausted. But... don’t breathe a sigh of relief yet. At the least provocation, for the remainder of that day -- and sometimes into the next - the meltdown can return in full force.

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Parenting Defiant Aspergers Teens

Although Aspergers is at the milder end of the autism spectrum, the challenges parents face when disciplining a teenager with Aspergers are more difficult than they would be with an average teen. Complicated by defiant behavior, the Aspergers teen is at risk for even greater difficulties on multiple levels – unless the parents’ disciplinary techniques are tailored to their child's special needs.

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Aspergers Children “Block-Out” Their Emotions

Parenting children with Aspergers and HFA can be a daunting task. In layman’s terms, Aspergers is a developmental disability that affects the way children develop and understand the world around them, and is directly linked to their senses and sensory processing. This means they often use certain behaviors to block out their emotions or response to pain.

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Older Teens and Young Adult Children With Aspergers Still Living At Home

Your older teenager or young “adult child” isn’t sure what to do, and he is asking you for money every few days. How do you cut the purse strings and teach him to be independent? Parents of teens with Aspergers face many problems that other parents do not. Time is running out for teaching their adolescent how to become an independent adult. As one mother put it, "There's so little time, yet so much left to do."

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Living with an Aspergers Spouse/Partner

Research reveals that the divorce rate for people with Aspergers is around 80%. Why so high!? The answer may be found in how the symptoms of Aspergers affect intimate relationships. People with Aspergers often find it difficult to understand others and express themselves. They may seem to lose interest in people over time, appear aloof, and are often mistaken as self-centered, vain individuals.

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Online Parent Coaching for Parents of Asperger's Children

If you’re the parent of a child with Aspergers or High-Functioning Autism, you know it can be a struggle from time to time. Your child may be experiencing: obsessive routines; problems coping in social situations; intense tantrums and meltdowns; over-sensitivity to sounds, tastes, smells and sights; preoccupation with one subject of interest; and being overwhelmed by even the smallest of changes.

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Parents, teachers, and the general public have a lot of misconceptions of Asperger's and High-Functioning Autism. Many myths abound, and the lack of knowledge is both disturbing and harmful to kids and teens who struggle with the disorder.

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Become an expert in helping your child cope with his or her “out-of-control” emotions, inability to make and keep friends, stress, anger, thinking errors, and resistance to change.

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My Aspergers Child - Syndicated Content