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Wednesday, November 12, 2014

FASD Tips From An Experienced Mom

This morning I had an endoscopy done because of stomach pain that wasn't/isn't improving with meds. I had to sign a paper saying I wouldn't drive, sign legal documents or make life changing decisions among other things today. Guess I am officially considered mentally challenged for the day. :) Nothing was said about writing blog posts though. However, just to be safe I will write this and then wait a few hours before publishing it, just in case it should contain some inappropriate or untrue information.
   Last night I was listening to a mom who has 2 children with FASD share some tips that made things easier for their family through the years. It was really interesting to listen to a mom talk. So often professionals share what they have learned but it is all book knowledge, not experience. You can tell a mom to just be patient when her child with FASD, who struggles to dress himself, takes even longer because he is putting the second layer of clothing on without realizing it. But you can't begin to grasp how frustrating it can be until you are that mom. I will not say whether the above experience is a true happening or not.
  Anyway here are a few of the tips:
-have a Ripping Box. Many children with FASD get very frustrated and like to tear things. Tell them, "I see you need the ripping box," when they reach that level of agitation.
-Fidget Bag, many of these children need something to keep their hands busy. This mom bought lots of dollar store toys and when a child began picking themselves, touching things they weren't supposed to etc. she would hand them the fidget bag. This bag also lowered the frustration level in their home as she wasn't getting upset as often over things those busy hands got into
-Bedtime Bucket. This bucket contained a few toys that were suitable to play with while falling asleep and in the morning before it was time to get up. Each child chooses a toy before he goes to bed at night.
-Visual Reminders. For instance a STOP sign on siblings bedroom doors. A visual reminder not to go into others bedrooms without permission.
-Role Play. Before going to see Grandma, act out what is the appropriate and expected behavior for such a visit. Do you jump on Grandma? Do you yell? Practice conversations so your child will have something to say that fits the occasion.
-Pack snacks in a fanny pack. The child wears the fanny pack and can feel when the pack is getting empty, giving them a much better perception of how much food they have left and hopefully helpto avoid the, "My food is all gone, now I will starve," panic.
-Avoid saying no. FASD children seem to have a penchant for asking questions that require a "no" answer. Reword your sentence to say something like: "We can't go outside because it is raining but you may play with your play dough."
-Remember just because your child knew how to put his coat on yesterday does not mean he can remember how to do the same today.
-Try different techniques. Just because something didn't work yesterday does not mean it will not work today or tomorrow.
here is the link if you wish to watch the presentation in its entirety.
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