Parents whose children have autism know the delicate balancing act of ensuring that their children receive the best possible medical care with treatment that accommodates their child's condition. There are numerous contributing factors that can create challenges when your child requires medical care, with the severity of your child's autism spectrum disorder (ASD) being the most prevalent. It can create complications with the ease with which your child can be examined and treated, although of course some forms of treatment can be more confronting than others. It really depends on the nature of the ailment and the subsequent best course of treatment. But what about when chiropractic care is recommended for children with autism?
The Reasons for the Visit
Chiropractic care can be recommended for a variety of reasons, not necessarily related to your child's autism. And yet it can also be a treatment for conditions specifically arising as a result of autism, such as the alternating withholding and involuntary discharge of fecal matter, which is known as encopresis. The traditional spinal and vertebral realignments commonly associated with chiropractic care can also have benefits in the improvement of your child's posture, potentially creating a greater ease with some motor functions.
Preparing for the Visit
Regardless of the reasons why chiropractic care has been suggested for your child, what are some of the ways to approach the scenario to ensure that your child is comfortable during the treatment?
- An open discussion with your child is, of course, the best way to get started. Explain the reason for the treatment, along with what can be expected. This is particularly important for children with autism who have an aversion to being touched.
- You could ask your doctor for a referral to a chiropractor with experience treating someone with autism. A children's chiropractor is also a good bet, as they have the necessary skills to help put a hesitant young patient at ease.
- In cases of extreme hesitancy and potential discomfort, a pre-treatment visit could help. You can take your child to the chiropractor's treatment room, where they can meet the chiropractor and become familiar with both the environment and the person who will be treating them.
- You could also demonstrate the process if you feel it would help, perhaps climbing on the treatment table yourself to create a point of reference for your child when it comes to what will be involved.
Chiropractic care for children with autism can come with additional challenges, but these challenges can certainly be overcome.