Autism assessment

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Malarkey2
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Autism assessment

Postby Malarkey2 » Mon Jan 11, 2021 10:34 pm

Hello.

On the last parent's evening, our 7-year-old son's teacher told us she suspected he may have autism and may need extra support in the class. She asked if we would agree to have the school's SENCO to come and observe him in class. Her comments didn't come up as a surprise to us and we agreed to it.

Sadly, this last lockdown has slowed everything down and we are now struggling to support him adequately while we try to continue with his education from home. We have had the feeling he was different for a long time and we think he would benefit from a proper diagnosis and we would welcome from some tips on how to help him. But we don't have a clue on how to go about it when he hasn't even been observed in class.

Should I get in touch with his GP? Or go directly to some private centre where they can assess him and give us a diagnosis? Would anyone recommend someone who can provide such an assessment?

Thank you.
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2009Kat
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Re: Autism assessment

Postby 2009Kat » Tue Jan 12, 2021 11:17 am

I have a 9 year old with ASD.  I would suggest you ask to speak to the school SENCO.  Hopefully they'd be able to speak to you over the phone or email and explain what the school would propose to do next.

You could also:
(1) go to the GP and ask for a referral on the NHS.  The school may also be able to make this referral (state schools definitely can, I am not sure about private schools but the SENCO could advise you).  Unfortunately the NHS waiting lists can be very long.
(2) go for a private assessment.  This will take less time but will be expensive.  Eg Dr Daphne Keen or Dr Giaroli and partners are some ideas to look at.  Others may have other recommendations. See the FB group below.

Depending on your child, they may also benefit from assessments by speech and language therapist (for the social communication aspects in particular - your child may speak well but do they actually understand? Are they missing social cues?) and also occupational therapist (sensory processing issues, motor skills, etc?).  An educational psychologist may also be helpful in looking at the child and advising on things that would help in the school/teaching etc.  It all depends on your child and what their needs are.

The actual autism assessment is usually very helpful in understanding and explaining the child's profile and needs. However, I have found that the recommendations of speech therapists, occupational therapists and educational psychologist have been more useful in the every day help.  It all depends on what your child specifically needs help with.

You could also join various parent groups for advice - facebook ASD SW London has lots of parents on it.  


 
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_commonsmum_
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Re: Autism assessment

Postby _commonsmum_ » Mon Jan 18, 2021 5:51 am

This may or may not be helpful for you but I hope it is helpful.

I’ve moved over from America and my eight year old was diagnosed with autism at 2 1/2. You may think that’s because she’s an extreme case but in fact she’s not. We went private the whole way because we felt we had more control over the situation and now that we are navigating a new system we feel more prepared with a diagnosis from private therapist and a history behind her. Especially because the way diagnosis is handled here- is a nightmare.

Given the current pandemic situation and from what we understand from wandsworth Council is diagnosis through the NHS and schools can sometimes take years. The council can even refuse to access!

If you have the resources now and the ability to have him seen privately I would highly recommend arming yourself now with that information. I Would also call his GP And start the process now asking for a referral on the NHS. But if you can go private go that way as well. That way when you do start handling stuff through the council, they are way more likely to speed this process up for you.

Big hugs to you during this time. Diagnosis was one of the most stressful times for our family but we felt much better after we had it and were able to see clear options for help for our daughter.
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emelrizwani
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Re: Autism assessment

Postby emelrizwani » Mon Jan 18, 2021 9:40 am

I have had endless amounts of support and advice from the team at Contact Wandsworth. They're amazing, completely independent and unlike the school or CAHMS, they don't have any considerations or motivations aside from you and your child. I would recommend getting in touch with them for advice. 
 
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rebecca.nicholls
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Re: Autism assessment

Postby rebecca.nicholls » Mon Jan 18, 2021 9:54 am

My son is 11 and was diagnosed and have managed to control most of his behaviour with reiki, cbt, meditation, the right diet and sorting out his gut. The gut and brain are connected so if the gut is compromised because of things like c section birth, not breastfeeding, not enough macronutrients /micronutrients my son always had a tough time eating anything healthy and it is reflected in his behaviour. Epigenetics shows we are above our genes. I was diagnosed with HIV in my pregnancy with my daughter and cleared that with going on a low dose of ARVs digestive enzymes and getting enough BCAA,s

His brain needs omegas, healthy fats etc. The brain is fat,it's not hardwird it's neuroplastic. Neurons can fire and rewire. I have seen some amazing things happen with the right care. Sadly the NHS is lacking on new science not just in autism but all care.


If you want your child to heal your child can heal
You just have to trust that it's possible and be prepared for this journey. Also do genetic testing because if you have a gene mutation such as MTHFR that can cause issues with detox pathways. So many brain diseases/disorders are build up on toxicity on brain.

DONT listen to me though. Do you own RESEARCH
Be OPEN minded . And know your child is incredibly special with many unique gifts and a beautiful perspective on life.
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gemima
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Re: Autism assessment

Postby gemima » Mon Jan 18, 2021 6:02 pm

Exactly what Rebecca Nicholls says.

Rebecca, did you do all of the 'correct food' research yourself?  My daughter is diagnosed with ADHD/ASD and I've been reading about the right foods to be feeding her currently poorly serviced, brain and gut.  (She only eats 'beige' foods, which is also a common theme amongst ADHD kids).  

However, I find the whole subject overwhelming.  I don't have a scientific mind to digest all the information, coupled with trying to work full time and home school.  It's getting all too much. I don't even have time to read this book which is about to come out soon: -

Rachel Gow, Smart Foods for ADHD and Brain Health.  How Nutrition influences cognitive function, behaviour and mood.

Kind Regards

 
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Red5
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Re: Autism assessment

Postby Red5 » Mon Jan 18, 2021 11:53 pm

My son has autism and ADHD and we have tried all of the above. Some things worked, somethings I wish we’d never have spent any money on whatsoever, lots of people peddling and praying on us desperate Sen parents who want what’s best. I can vouch for for Dr Rachael Gow, I’ve met her and she is a mind of information about all things adhd  and diet, my son is quite rigid in his eating so it didn’t quite work out for us but she has a wealth knowledge and I think she has an Insta page which is really helpful.
I don’t subscribe to the whole healing autism thing as it’s a life long condition and it’s about helping them adjust along the way with lots of different interventions be that diet changes, OT, speech therapies, cbt, sensory integration etc. Also I think the world could do with a little teaching on neuro-diversity, not trying to make them fit into our expected norms, schools need to make reasonable adjustments too. Anyone that’s my thoughts.
You’ve been given some great advice, I’d prioritise the assessment first, definitely get on the waiting list at least then your in the system, reach out to the Contact charity see what they say about getting a private assessment, they are amazing too and are a great signposting service. Although she’s retired from the NHS DR Daphne Keen still runs private clinics and used to be the lead consultant at St George’s for autism and adhd assessment teams, she knows the system inside out. Hope that helps, lots to digest.x
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Mummom267
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Re: Autism assessment

Postby Mummom267 » Tue Jan 19, 2021 9:56 pm

I got my son assessed by CF Psycology during the first lockdown on a Sunday in Harley Street. They did a very comprehensive report and I really liked Rebecca.
I also recommend Maximum Potential for private OT based in Putney they are a lovely knowledgeable group of specialist OT’s.
Good luck
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