Archive for 2013

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder and Autism Spectrum Disorder

OCD and ASD: How are they different?

We often get questions from parents about their child’s behaviors that have an “OCD” feel to them. They wonder if this is true Obsessive Compulsive Disorder or part of their child’s autism diagnosis. For answers to these questions, we went to two of our psychologists here at the SC Autism Center. Here’s what they had to say:

What is OCD?

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder is an anxiety disorder characterized by a) persistent and distressing thoughts and b) behaviors used to “cope with” those thoughts. A person with OCD often feels “compelled” to perform compulsive behaviors and believes that performing these behaviors will “keep bad things from happening.” OCD is more common Read full post »

New Season of Parenthood Starts Tonight

Last season on NBC’s big-family drama, “Parenthood,” the overwhelming storyline was one family member’s battle with breast cancer.  How does that not overshadow all of the other storylines?  However, in case you missed it, there were plenty of situations in which Autism Spectrum Disorder continued to be woven in – most notably when Max Braverman was elected student council president!

In can you need a refresher or haven’t ever seen the show, Max is character who has Asperger’s syndrome. I’ve chronicled parts of past seasons in previous blog posts, here and here.

I invite you to watch it tonight (Thursdays) at 10 PM and follow along with me this season. I’ll plan on providing a little commentary and important updates about how Max tackles middle school every several episodes, so please let me know what you think about this season – I think they’ve done a great job capturing at least one picture of Autism Spectrum Disorder.

Autism and Tic Disorders

Interview with: Samuel Zinner, MD

Sometimes we at Seattle Children’s Autism Center get questions or concerns from parents about some of the unusual mannerisms children with autism display. In an earlier blog post, we discussed many of these behaviors and why our kids do these things. One question (not covered in that post) we often hear is this: “Is what I’m seeing a tic?” when it comes to repetitive vocalizations or motor movements.

To answer this question, we turned to an expert on tic disorders, Samuel Zinner, M.D. Dr. Zinner is an associate professor of pediatrics and a developmental-behavioral pediatrician at the University of Washington and Seattle Children’s Hospital. His research, advocacy and clinical interests focus on tic disorders and associated conditions including Autism Spectrum Disorders. Read full post »

Sensory Story Time at Seattle Public Libraries

A new, early learning story time geared towards children ages 10 and under who have a hard time in larger story time groups, are on the autism spectrum, or are sensitive to sensory overload is beginning at two branches of the Seattle Public Library System. All appropriate aged children are invited to any of the story times, but this story time may be more enjoyable for some children with autism. Librarians will use preschool-level books, songs and movement during the story times. Read full post »

When Parents Disagree about Their Child’s Treatment

Finding and participating in treatment for a child with autism spectrum disorder can be challenging under the best circumstances. At the outset of treatment or even in the course of it, barriers to progress may become evident. One of the most difficult barriers to overcome is a situation in which a child’s parents disagree with the choice or course of treatment. As a result, much of the interaction with the provider may be dominated by resolving conflict and managing the adults in the session, rather than focusing on the child’s needs and well-being. Thus, the child’s treatment needs may be overshadowed, and progress is slowed or halted altogether.  Read full post »