Children and adults with autism spectrum disorders may have sensory systems that do not function properly.
Without the foundation of an integrated sensory system, many people with autism spectrum disorders cannot reach developmental milestones. People with autism spectrum disorders generally have difficulty with:
- Activities of daily living
- Fine and gross motor skills
- Sensory and tactile defensiveness
- Social interaction
All of the above issues become obstacles to a person’s ability to learn, grow and achieve his/her highest level of independent functioning. Occupational Therapy is provided by a team of licensed occupational therapists and assistants. The therapy is designed to help the person with an autism spectrum disorder develop the underlying skills necessary to function independently in educational, home and community settings.
Occupational Therapy provided at Autism Services is sensory based, and the general goals of therapy provided are:
- Promotion of independence in daily-living skills
- Enhancement of ability to cope with task demands and environmental stimuli
- Development of a repertoire of effective relaxation techniques
- Integration of the sensory system
- To decrease sensory defensiveness
- Development of social skills
Members of the Occupational Therapy Department participate as members of the interdisciplinary treatment team by:
- Attending team meetings
- Participating in CSE (committee on special education) meetings
- Consulting with parents, teachers and therapists from other disciplines, and other staff members
- Working cooperatively within the interdisciplinary treatment team
The mission of the Occupational Therapy Department reflects that of the agency: To assist people with autism spectrum disorders in attaining their highest level of independence utilizing an individualized approach that promotes intellectual, social and emotional growth. We are also dedicated to enrichment through art, music and movement.