Autism - it’s not a disability- it’s a different ability.
Throughout my career as a teacher and a nanny, I’ve come across people who knew little about autism. It’s common that, people tend to overlook signs of early diagnosis due to lack of knowledge and a lack of awareness about autism.
Autism week is a great opportunity to spread information, raise awareness and encourage autism acceptance.
Autism is a spectrum disorder, meaning that individuals are distinct and unique, possessing various abilities and challenges, depending on where they are on the spectrum. For example, only a third of individuals with Autism are nonverbal.
There are early signs which can be spotted in babies such as no eye contact, concerns over loud noises, and very little social interaction. Although most of the signs can be spotted between 2 and 3 years. Mostly one of the first signs at that age is being nonverbal, failing to respond to their name, and have very little or no interest in people.
From my experience, it’s great to keep a developmental journal where you can keep an eye on the child's developmental milestones and if there is a red flag it’s easier for the professionals to diagnose with the help of the journal.
It’s important for us nannies to have knowledge about autism and signpost parents if we feel the child displays signs of autism. There is a wide range of professionals who can offer support and guidance on how to work through any difficulties the child encounters.
By having awareness and offering the right support, children with autism become more successful in their adulthood.
Raise awareness and promote inclusion!
BAPN members can access a discount on online training courses for nannies about autism awareness:
Autism Awareness for Nannies - delivered by the Independent Autism Advice Service. Members do take a look in the members section of our website for more information. Also, take a look at the link below.
Cristina Sajtos, BAPN Membership Ambassador