Parenting children with Autism requires patience, love – Stakeholders

Stakeholders say parenting children with Autism Spectrum Disorder requires patience and love, urging parents and caregivers to show understanding when relating with them.

The experts said caring for children with the condition calls for utmost tolerance, love and compassion, and that though they may exhibit certain behaviours, such attitudes should be seen as the best within their abilities.

According to the National Autistic Society, autism is a lifelong developmental disability which affects how people communicate and interact with the world.

The Society stated that more than one in 100 people are on the autism spectrum and there are around 700,000 autistic adults and children in the United Kingdom.

Corroborating the statistics, the World Health Organisation explains that autism constitutes a diverse group of conditions related to the development of the brain and about one in 100 children has autism.

They stated that the characteristics may be detected in early childhood, but autism is often not diagnosed until much later.

The global health body noted that the abilities and needs of autistic people vary and can evolve over time, adding that while some people with autism can live independently, others have severe disabilities and require life-long care and support.

“Evidence-based psychosocial interventions can improve communication and social skills, with a positive impact on the well-being and quality of life of both autistic people and their caregivers.

“Care for people with autism needs to be accompanied by actions at community and societal levels for greater accessibility, inclusivity and support,” the WHO stated.

Speaking exclusively with PUNCH Healthwise in different interviews, the stakeholders said autistic persons have their inalienable rights and should be protected.

The President, Joint National Association of Persons with Disabilities, Abdullahi Usman, while thanking parents for caring for autistic children, encouraged them to do more in love and respect.

He said. “Taking care of a child with a disability is a difficult thing which takes a good deal of love and patience to do. It is easier to take care of three normal children than to take care of one child with a disability.”

According to him, the needs of the people living with disabilities differ, likewise their characters and taking care of them could be really challenging but patience is all that is required.

“They can do things that will make people wonder and that is because their understanding is quite different from those of other normal children. They try their best to be the best but they are limited by their condition.

“So, I pray that Almighty Allah will bless the parents taking care of children with autism. I also advise and encouraged them to keep doing their best in raising them to become useful and better children in society,” he added.

Speaking further, a Community Health Extension Worker in Lagos, Martins Asuquo, said autism is a complex neurological condition that can cause difficulty with communication, social interactions, and behaviour.

Persons with autism, he said, often have unique needs that require special attention and patience, insisting that patience is a priceless trait when working with them.

He noted that children with autism have different needs with unpredictable and challenging characteristics, explaining that they always try their best and it is important to endure what they do in order to achieve positive results.

Asuquo emphasised that patience is needed to create a successful learning environment and to maximise the potential for positive outcomes.

“They may also possess sensory sensitivities and can become easily overwhelmed in certain environments. Hence, there is a need to create an environment that is conducive to learning. Patience is a must if we must get the best out of these people,” he maintained.


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