Applied behavior analysis (ABA) therapy is a widely recognized and effective treatment for children with developmental delays and disorders, including autism spectrum disorder (ASD). As a parent, you might be wondering when is the right time to start ABA therapy for your child. Below we provide some helpful tips to consider when deciding when to start ABA therapy.
Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) is the study of human behavior. Board Certified Behavior Analysts (BCBAs) identify patterns of behaviors to decrease interfering behaviors and increase socially significant behaviors. ABA therapy is widely recognized as an effective treatment for children with interfering behaviors, developmental delays, or disorders, including autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Below, we provide some helpful tips for considering if ABA is right for your child and when to start ABA therapy.
When to Start ABA Therapy
Early intervention is crucial when it comes to ABA therapy. Research has shown that starting ABA therapy before the age of five can lead to better outcomes in language development, socialization, and behavior. The earlier a child starts therapy, the more effective it can be in helping them learn new skills and behaviors and reducing challenging behaviors. However, ABA therapy can still be effective for children over the age of five. At Project Play Therapy we look at several factors, such as your child’s diagnosis and the severity of their symptoms, to determine when they should start.
Research has shown that early intervention, or participating in therapy before the age of 5, can support a child to gain skills for better outcomes in language development, socialization, and behavior. The earlier a child starts therapy, the more effective it can be in helping them learn new skills and behaviors and reducing challenging behaviors. However, ABA can be effective for children over the age of 5.
Assessment and Diagnosis
Project Play’s BCBAs will assess the child and their environment to determine the level of support needed to reach their fullest potential.
ABA therapy can be a significant commitment for your child and the family. It is important to be prepared for your child to have services multiple times a week and for you to be prepared to engage in parent training frequent
Typically parents start ABA therapy for their child when they have concerns regarding delays in age-appropriate skills, like communication, play, or social skills, or when their child is Some examples of interfering behaviors could include meltdowns, running away, hitting, or refusal. ABA therapy can support your child, and you as the parent, gain skills to reach their fullest potential!
Another common time that a child starts ABA therapy is after being diagnosed with a developmental delay, such as delayed language development. ABA therapy is often recommended as an effective treatment option—assisting children with developmental delays in learning new skills and behaviors, improving their communication skills, and developing socialization skills.
It’s important to consider your family’s readiness for ABA therapy when deciding when to start. ABA therapy typically requires a significant commitment from both the child and the family, including regular therapy sessions, take home assignments, and generalization activities. Families need to be prepared to make the necessary time commitment and to regularly participate in the therapy process to ensure success.
The decision to start ABA therapy is a complex and personal one. Early intervention, assessment and diagnosis, challenging behaviors, developmental delays, and family readiness are all usually a catalyst for most families to start ABA therapy. Ultimately, the decision should be based on what is best for your child’s individual needs, with the support of qualified ABA therapists. At Project Play Therapy, ABA is powerful in helping children reach their full potential. To discuss ABA timing or our assessment process, please fill out a form.
If you are interested in accessing compassionate, individualized ABA services through Project Play, click here to begin the intake process! We can’t wait to meet your child and your family!