Autism, Assessment and Support
Autism is a lifelong developmental disability which affects how people communicate and interact with the world. Characteristics generally appear in early childhood. Learn more about how an autism diagnosis is made for children and teenagers at our Kids Clinic, and how we can support them reaching their goals.
Unique strengths, challenges and needs
Autism is a neurodevelopmental condition that affects the way people relate to the environment and the people around them. Autistic people may have a different way of communicating and interacting with others, repetitive patterns of behaviours, highly-focused interests, sensory sensitivities, meltdowns/shutdowns… Around 1 in every 100 Australians is autistic. Every autistic person is different (that’s why we define autism as a ‘spectrum’), which means that each person has unique strengths, challenges and needs, ranging from low to high support needs.
If you suspect that your child or teen is autistic, it is important to receive an assessment and diagnosis by trained professionals, so they can get the strategies, interventions and support they need. Our Kids Clinic provides expert clinical assessment and intervention to children who are or are suspected to be, autistic. As parents, you will receive a copy of the assessment report, which can be used to determine eligibility for funding (such as NDIS) or other support.
Once a diagnosis is made, our team of psychologists, speech pathologists, and therapy assistants can help your child develop their social interactions and communication skills in a safe, supportive and fun space, and learn more about autism, from a strengths-based perspective.
We can help you
At the Kids Clinic, we actively seek the expertise of autistic people and embrace practices that respect and accept individual neurotype. We are not afraid to move away from normative and outdated agendas. With your child, our team of experts will focus on natural developmental processes, coping strategies, autonomy, and well-being; for a confident, assertive and happy child.
- Autistic self-advocacy to help your child stand up for themselves
- Social skill development to understand better neurotypical interactions, not copy them
- Assertiveness at home, at school and in the community
- Deconstructing ‘normative behaviours’ as the gold standard for human behaviours, as ‘masking’ autistic traits can have a huge cost on mental health and well-being
- Encouraging and providing opportunities for sensory and emotional regulation
Our multidisciplinary team
The Kids Clinic is also part of CHAMPS, a multidisciplinary team made up of paediatricians, clinical psychologists, neuropsychologists, occupational therapists, and speech therapists. Together, they carry out a series of different assessments over several appointments to determine if your child meets the criteria for a diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorder.
What to expect
Making your first appointment
Once you’ve decided to try therapy, call our kind and caring admin team on (02) 9139 0126 to discuss what you are having difficulty with and book your first appointment.
Attending the initial consultation
In the initial consultation, your psychologist is looking to build a picture of how you’ve come to where you are today and what you are looking to get out of therapy. Your psychologist will do their best to address any questions or concerns you may have about the process.
Creating a treatment plan together
Over the first three sessions, your psychologist will work collaboratively with you to establish goals for treatment. They are designed to be specific, realistic, and tailored to your needs.
As your therapy goes on, you will continue the process of building a trusting relationship with your psychologist. You will work with them to find alternative ways of thinking and behaving, build resilience and learn new skills that will help to see yourself and the world differently. o promote helpful actions in life.
Make a booking today
Not sure where to start or have a question?
There can be lots of questions that come up when you’re trying to make a decision about whether to see a psychologist. If you have a question that we haven’t answered in our FAQ, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.