Studies and researchers show that there are 1 in 110 children who are diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). The children are unable to understand their own and the mental states of others. This can affect the emotional experiences of the children dealing with autism to understand, interpret and handle their emotions. Such abnormalities interfere with developing social interactions with people. To develop emotional regulations in children with autism, certain methods have been developed among which cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) has shown some success. CBT has proven useful in the children with autism to decrease their anxiety level and anger. The cognitive behavioral therapy focuses on the children in the late childhood or early adolescence period.
The ability of the children suffering from autism to regulate their emotions is analyzed through the reports. The reports contain different strategies which can be used while dealing with the anger or anxiety of the children. The duration in minutes of the anger or anxiety periods also matters for the cognitive behavioral therapy. A scale from 1 to 10 is created and the parents are asked at which rate they can handle the child’s anxiety or anger to analyze the confidence of the parents in the child’s abilities. Parental observation on children is very important when they are suffering through the ASD.
The children attend group sessions which are scheduled for one hour for nine weeks. The intervention is taken for building the skills of the children through education. They are also taught to manage the stress and helped for understanding the emotions and expressions. The therapy teaches to control and learn about the emotions with the help of cognitive behavioral techniques and tools. The techniques include teaching them to recognize emotions, relaxation, physical and social behavior. They are also taught to fix intense emotions. The sessions are organized in a systematic manner which focuses on the topic precisely which are needed to be covered.
- Effective results
Children respond to the therapy with a remarkable increase in the level of confidence to deal with anxiety and anger. The parents also get better confidence in controlling the anger of the children suffering from autism with the help of CBT. The time of the episode of anxiety and anger becomes less when compared to therapy. The emotional regulation is improved and the mood intensity is decreased at a very significant rate. The improvement in children suffering from autism ranging from the age of 8 to 14 years is very significant through CBT. Some studies show that with the help of cognitive behavioral approach the children which are younger can also respond to the cognitive behavioral therapy.
- Role of Parental confidence
In the children suffering from autism, the role of parental confidence is very significant. With a number of siblings at home, the parental confidence is observed to be less when compared to the no sibling situation. For the cognitive behavioral therapy, parental confidence is required to handle the child’s anger or anxiety with full concentration when the child is suffering through the ASD. Children tend to have more intense emotions when there are siblings and the parents find it difficult to handle the situation. The siblings are found less competitive and supportive in such cases. The future research should find a way for the interactions between the siblings and the children suffering from autism which could help them for emotional regulation.
The cognitive behavioral therapy is proved helpful and productive for the children suffering from high- functional autism. The researchers are in search of the intervention which can be used for the neurodevelopmental conditions that overlap with autism. The children grow towards healthy emotional regulation and the family also bonds with the help of the cognitive behavioral approach.