How To Help Kids With Autism Cope During the Pandemic

How To Help Kids With Autism Cope During the Pandemic from North Carolina Lifestyle Blogger Adventures of Frugal Mom

The flurry of changes a pandemic brings wear down the most battle-tested of us all. In an effort to limit in-person contact, everyone’s routines went topsy-turvy, and more stress crept in than ever before. For kids with autism, staying home more is nice at times, this stress easily overwhelms them. I want y’all to thrive in whatever way you can right now, so here are some tips on how to help kids with autism cope during a pandemic based on what I learned from precious friends.

Create New Social Stories

Kids with autism struggle in new situations. Enter: social stories. These help them rehearse details they wouldn’t expect otherwise and gain a grasp of their world. With new stressors, though, comes the need for new, thoughtful social stories. You can comb the web to find some COVID-related ones or create them from scratch. Focusing on handwashing and not touching things in public are two important ones.

Be Quick To Listen, Slow To Explode

Next, don’t lose your head. You are, whether you know it or not, their biggest source of stability in the whole wide world right now. If you snap at them out of exhaustion, I guarantee you they won’t respond well.

Prioritize calm and clear communication more than ever. You know that your kiddo expresses their fear in unconventional ways, and your attentiveness allows you to notice the small signs only a parent can divine. I promise, if they can adjust well in this extreme time, lesser stressors will pale in comparison and be easy to deal with.

Introduce Opportunities for Choice

My final suggestion to help kids with autism cope during the pandemic involves giving them choices. As preferred activities narrow out of necessity, find creative means of broadening out what they can do so they can gain some control back. There are plenty of sensory toys to pick from for home play, ranging from slime to a trampoline, so you’re sure to find something they’ll love

Do the same for meals; offer two meal options rather than forcing one on them three times a day. If they’re straining from stress already, this loss of control could push them over the edge.

Above all, know your child. You know what they can and can’t handle and how to ease off right now.

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