Our daughter had many early signs of autism but they were looked at individually and nobody mentioned autism to us. We were first referred for early intervention because she wasn’t babbling and she ran her face along the floor but we didn't know until she was older that she should have imitated our facial expressions, waved bye, or played patty cake. We had several hearing tests done when she was young because she didn’t seem to hear us.We were provided with a consultant OT (occupational therapist), who dealt with her sensory problems. She had low sensitivity in her face and mouth so we used vibrating toys and toothbrushes to help with that. We were taught exercises to do on an exercise ball to help with her coordination, balance, and muscle tone. When she was a young baby we had to bounce our daughter hard in our lap and even as she got older she needed to bounce and jump a lot. We were told to take many parenting classes, and also took the Hanen Program to improve her communication. She spoke single words and she would say a word once and then never again.
|Jumping at kindergym!|
If you feel there is something that doesn’t seem right with the way your child is developing, keep after the doctors. She had other health problems that we had to fight to get solved along the way also but that is another story.
Once she was diagnosed, we got her on the IBI waitlist, started going to parent support groups and got a consultant at Kerry’s Place. She is smart and a quick learner so once she figured out she needed to use more than one word, sentences came quickly. IBI started when she was 7 and in grade 3 and that is when she learned to have a proper conversation (one that wasn’t one sided and just about her obsession!). To receive government funded IBI, the child must be toward the severe end of the spectrum. While IBI is best started when the child is as young as possible, individuals of any age can be taught and can learn. The Ontario government originally only funded up to the age of 6, but a year or 2 before Micah started, that was changed to include all children who qualify.