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Caring for a child with Asperger’s

2-minute read

Asperger’s syndrome is part of a group of neurological disorders known as autism spectrum disorders. Asperger’s syndrome is at the mild end of this spectrum.

Children with Asperger’s syndrome may have difficult behaviours because of the difficulties they face in expressing their thoughts and feelings.

If you have a child with Asperger's, you may find it helps them to cope if they spend some time alone, or get some exercise. Your child may be comforted by breathing techniques or relaxing music.

Treatments and therapies for Asperger’s syndrome include:

  • therapies such as occupational therapy, physiotherapy and speech pathology
  • psychological therapies such as cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), which may reduce anxiety
  • the Social Stories program, which explains social situations
  • programs that provide skills for parents and children
  • medicines for specific symptoms, such as hyperactivity, anxiety, aggression and tics.

These therapies can help in very practical ways. For example, occupational therapy can help your child learn how to get dressed, talk to friends and complete work or school tasks.

There is no evidence that complementary or alternative medicines relieve Asperger’s symptoms.

If you care for a child with Asperger’s syndrome, there are many ways to get help and support. Each Australian state and territory has an association that can provide information and support to people with Asperger’s and their carers. You can find the autism spectrum disorder association in your state or territory here.

The Raising Children Network can also tell you about services for diagnosis, treatment, education and learning support.

Your child may need support at school, especially at secondary school when there is more movement between classes and teachers. Regular discussions with your child’s teacher or principal can help identify the right support and coping mechanisms.

Last reviewed: November 2016

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