How To Avoid Child-Meltdowns At The Doctor's Office

“Do you have any advice on how we can make my 6 year old daughter’s upcoming visit to our doctor less stressful? She was diagnosed with high functioning autism recently, and has a history of not doing well while being examined, crying hysterically from start to finish. It’s a real ordeal for all of us, including the doc! Also, my daughter has pica.”

Most children with Asperger’s and High Functioning Autism have difficulties with social interaction, communication, and accepting novelty. Therefore, spending the extra time to acclimate the “special needs” child to the new environment/experience will be crucial, for example:
  • Allow ample time while talking before touching the child
  • Allow the child to manipulate instruments and materials
  • Exaggerate social cues
  • Familiarize the child with the office setting and staff
  • Have family and/or familiar staff available
  • Keep instructions simple, using visual cues and supports
  • Slow down the pace of the overall doctor’s visit

These accommodations will be helpful in reducing the obstacles to health care provision presented by the child’s social skills deficits and resistance to new and unusual encounters.

Often, more time is required for outpatient appointments. In a nationally representative sample, it was found that kids on the autism spectrum spent twice as much time with the doctor per outpatient visit compared with kids in control groups.

RE: Pica— Asperger’s children with pica or persistent mouthing of fingers or objects should be monitored for elevated blood lead concentrations, particularly if the history suggests potential for environmental exposure. Pica often goes away in a few months without treatment.

More resources for parents of children and teens with High-Functioning Autism and Asperger's:

==> How To Prevent Meltdowns and Tantrums In Children With High-Functioning Autism and Asperger's

==> Parenting System that Significantly Reduces Defiant Behavior in Teens with Aspergers and High-Functioning Autism

==> Launching Adult Children with Asperger's and High-Functioning Autism: Guide for Parents Who Want to Promote Self-Reliance

==> Teaching Social Skills and Emotion Management to Children and Teens with Asperger's and High-Functioning Autism

==> Parenting Children and Teens with High-Functioning Autism: Comprehensive Handbook

==> Unraveling The Mystery Behind Asperger's and High-Functioning Autism: Audio Book

==> Parenting System that Reduces Problematic Behavior in Children with Asperger's and High-Functioning Autism

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