Back-to-School Tips for Parents of Children with Autism, ADHD
Aug 21, 2017 - 11:41:53 AM

( - HOUSTON –  – Students will soon make the often-tricky transition to a new school year, and among these students are those identified with autism spectrum disorders (ASD), attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) or other developmental/behavioral differences.

“Starting a new school year is an exciting time, it can also be a source of anxiety to both parents and children, particularly for families with children with ASD or ADHD,” said Anson Koshy, M.D., M.B.E., assistant professor and developmental pediatrician at McGovern Medical School at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth).

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates 1 in 68 American children has an autism spectrum disorder.

“The sooner children with ASDs have access to evidence-based services and treatment, the more likely they are to progress,” said Koshy, medical director of the UT Physicians Center for Autism and Related Conditions, part of the Children’s Learning Institute at McGovern Medical School at UTHealth.

Here are eight tips from Koshy to help reduce the stress on your child and family for a smoother transition back to school:

“Teachers want every child to be successful and parents want to see their children reach their full potential,” Koshy said. “This is a process and change rarely occurs overnight. If the transition into the school year is a little tough for your family or child in the beginning, remind yourself of your child’s previous accomplishments. Talk with your child’s teacher for a better picture of what they are seeing in the classroom setting.”

During the first month of school, there is a shared excitement about a new beginning.

“When trying to assess if a child has symptoms of ADHD or if a prescribed ADHD medication is effective in a new academic year, it’s helpful to wait until after the first month of school to evaluate how your child is doing. This allows for the reality of routines and expectations to set in order to gain a more realistic measurement,” he said.


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