Friday, August 6, 2010

A Look at Asperger's Syndrome: Part IV

In the October 2009 issue of Scholastic Parent and Child, Lynn Kern Koegel, Ph.D., answered questions about Asperger's Syndrome. Below are the final questions and answers from Lynn.

Question: Should parents be part of the treatment plan for Asperger's Syndrome?
Koegel: I always recommend that parents make sure they're an integral part of the intervention. If the therapist wants to exclude them from their child's therapy, that's a red flag, because a lot of socialization is going to be after school or on the weekends, so the parents need to be able to learn what behaviors to prompt and what kind of things to do in those situations.

Question: Is there any research under way that may impact the way Asperger's is treated in the future?
Koegel: There really aren't any big breakthroughs coming out. If anyone tells you there is one strategy that's going to cure your kid, take y9our wallet and run. Unfortunately, there are no medications that can help your child become more social. It's really blood, sweat, and tears, and a lot of work with the child and a lot of different interventions at one time. Researchers don't fully understand friendship, but we know that we can help our children develop friendships, whether they have a disability or not.

For more information on Asperger's Syndrome, check out Lynn Kern Koegel's books, Overcoming Autism and Growing Up on the Spectrum: A Guide to Life, Love and Learning for Teens and Young Adults with Autism and Asperger's, and visit education.ucsb.edu/autism.


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