February 23, 2018

Parenting Tips and Tricks

9 Ways You Can Help a Special Needs Parent: A parent of a special needs child offers tips for those trying to help.

7 Things You Don’t Know About a Special Needs Parent: About 6 million kids in America receive special education, according to the U.S. Department of Education. One out of every 10 children under the age of 14 has some type of special need, which includes any physical, cognitive, or medical disability, or chronic or life-threatening illness. Learn about some of the challenges faced by special needs parents.

Traveling With a Child With Autism:  It’s no surprise that parents of children on the autism spectrum tendto avoid travel. Negotiating airports, cruise ships and amusement parks can be taxing for any family — let alone parents of children with autism, who are particularly sensitive to how trangers and travel workers will respond to their child’s needs and behaviors. But travel can bring unique benefi ts to families coping with these issues, and if you follow some simple steps you can make traveling an enjoyable and worthwhile experience. Here are five reasons why families with autism should take on adventure together.


Actually, There Are Apps for That:  You may think that the iPhone and all that goes with it is meant for your leisure time or, at the very most, the administrative side of your duties. But the iPhone’s applications have grown to include a myriad of tools any OT can use, particularly when working with children. There are apps that focus on tracing, others on typing and even more on music and other sounds. Your iPhone or iPod Touch can be your new (and considerably smaller, i.e. portable) OT toolbox.

Packing Nutritious School Lunches
:  Children see one food and for every 5 minutes of cartoons they watch on saturday mornings. since few of these ads are for fruits and vegetables and children watch about 20 hours of tV per week, few children get good information about proper nutrition. As a result, only 1 percent of all children have eating patterns consistent with dietary recommendations, stated the u.s. department of agriculture’s (asda) Food and nutrition service. In addition, only 18 percent of girls ages 9-19 get the calcium they need, and 4.7 million youth ages 6-17 are overweight. Forty-five percent of elementary school children eat less than one serving of fruit, 20 percent eat less than one serving of vegetables and 50 percent do not eat the number of servings of grains they need in a day.


Sensory Strategies for the Classroom: We asked you to tell us what tools works best in helping children with sensory integration issues. Here’s a list of your favorite tools and why you find them so useful.


Establishing Bath Time Routines for Children:  Bath time can be one of the most stressful times of the day for parents and children. Parents often struggle with making sure their children are safe and clean in a reasonable amount of time, and children often resist bath time altogether. Yet bathing oneself safely is an important developmental skill for children to learn as they become more independent.

From Inside the Puzzle: Raising a Child with Autism Blog:
 Learn tips and tricks from parents with everyday experiences.


Dealing with Food Allergies at School: The beginning of the school year is stressful for most healthy children and their parents. But when a child has food allergies, anticipating the upcoming school year becomes even more nerver-wracking. For children with food allergies, the school day can present a wide range of situations that need to be carefully managed. The cafeteria presents a problem–so do the bag lunches that friends bring to school and the classroom party treats sent by other parents.


AFO Tips: AFOs, or Ankle Foot Orthoses, are very common types of braces worn by children with a wide variety of conditions.  When used properly, AFOs can greatly enhance a child’s function, by helping her stand or walk, and may also help prevent foot and ankle deformities.


Ready, Set, Learn: Occupational therapists in schools often work with students who experience sensory processing disorders (SPD). Frequently, the teacher will complete a Sensory Profile (Dunn, 2006) for the student, and the OT will use that information to develop a sensory diet. A sensory diet can include strategies to help a student self-regulate by jumping on a trampoline, swinging, or wearing a pressure vest.


Therapy Source News: Digital magazine for Occupational and Physical Therapists


Universal Pre-K Information:  UPK offers free early learning opportunities to children 4 years of age. UPK creates a system of programs for four‐year olds that meet the needs of all children including preschool children with disabilities. A key goal of UPK programming is to ensure access for all students, alignment with the NY State Learning Standards to ensure academic success. UPK programs are educationally‐based, developmentally‐appropriate in meeting the social, cognitive, linguistic, emotional , cultural, and physical needs of children. A child’s IEP can easily be implemented within the context of a UPK program. Additionally, UPK offers children socialization opportunities relationship building and experiences that build self determination and self esteem. It offers professionals opportunities to collaborate with a variety of stakeholders including; parents, teachers, education administrators, therapists and preschool special education administrators.

Keeping Your Autistic Kids Safe: In 2008, Danish researchers found that the mortality rate among autistic individuals was nearly twice that of the unaffected population. Most parents place their children’s safety as a top priority as a rule. But for parents of autistic kids, the reality is that it can be even more difficult to keep your children safe from themselves and others simply because of the nature of their disorder. However, parents of autistic children should not live in constant fear: there are tips parents and caregivers of autistic kids can follow to make sure they stay safe.


Exploring Feeding Behavior in Autism: Feeding issues are common in children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD). Feeding can be very stressful for the child and for the family. Helping your child overcome feeding issues can be a long, slow journey, but it is well worth the reward of better health and food flexibility. Feeding can present a significant challenge for children with ASD. Language delays (for example) can limit a child’s ability to report pain and discomfort that might be interfering with feeding. This tool kit is designed to help families affected by ASD understand eating behaviors, give guidance on how to address feeding issues, and review some common questions that families have about eating problems.


Establishing Toileting Routines for Children: TOILETING IS AN IMPORTANT SKILL FOR DAILY LIFE that has many social implications. In order for the child to achieve this important milestone, children and families need to establish a clear toileting routine. This will ensure a child has success in school and in social situations. The following tips are from pediatric occupational therapy practitioners who have experience with educating parents on establishing toileting routines.