This article is an update of our original article written in 2017 – long before we, and our children, were faced with the prospect of COVID 19 and the associated disruptions to school and everyday life. I am talking about about Autism and anxiety, an issue which has taken on a new meaning in the last eighteen months. Previous research suggested that up to 85% of autistic individuals will...Learn More
This is the title of a new book I will be writing, along with colleagues, and which will include real life stories from individuals (and their families) who have been affected by either not having their Autism recognised or being misdiagnosed. It has been commissioned by Jessica Kingsley Publishers and will hopefully be complete by June 2022.
young people arrive in inpatient services without...Learn More
As many people who have attended the various PDA conferences over the last couple of years may know, we as a team, decided back in 2016 to collate all of the information we collect as part of our assessment process, and analyse what we found. We realised we were in a very fortunate position; we were seeing a large number of children and young people who fitted the PDA profile, and this seemed...Learn More
Adult diagnosis, mis-diagnosis, and experience of parenting for autistic women
Over the years I have spent a great deal of my working life as part of a multi-disciplinary team assessing both children and adults for Autism. When I first started work in the NHS in 2001, we saw very few girls or young women in our service. I have written before about my shock, when over ten years later, whilst...Learn More
Like many clinical teams who have traditionally been involved in face to face interaction with people, the last two months have been a challenge for us. Factoring in this alongside lockdown and restrictions on travel have meant we have needed to work quickly to find new ways of supporting families.We have also seen a rise in the number of parents who have approached us because their child has...Learn More
A new year dawns and it is always a good time to reflect upon the previous year. At Help for Psychology (in common with many other teams) we have seen a huge increase in the number of very complex young people we have been asked to work with, and distressing reports from parents about their struggle to access appropriate and timely services for both children and young adults.Some of the...Learn More
Many children (especially girls) do not receive a formal diagnosis of Autism until they move to secondary (or High school) around the age of twelve. This often follows few (or fewer) difficulties at primary (or Elementary) school.The reasons for this are outlined in this article and may help explain why some children require additional support to make this important transition.When a child is...Learn More
As many people may be aware, there has been a great deal of interest in, and controversy around, PDA. What it is, what it should be called, and whether it actually exists.
As it is now over thirty years since the original concept of PDA was introduced by Elizabeth Newson and her colleagues, and how the thinking around Autism has moved on significantly during this time, it is very...Learn More
Human babies are amongst the least developed, in terms of their ability to manage independently, of all mammals. They are born with only the primitive parts of their brain fully functioning, with the majority of brain development taking place throughout childhood (hence the soft spot or fontanelle at the top of a baby’s head which allows its brain to grow significantly during the first year...Learn More
Like most people I have been following the recent news stories about young people with autism and the PDA profile carefully. The first case to be highlighted was that of Bethany, a seventeen year old girl with autism and the PDA profile. From what I can gather, Bethany’s family had tried (unsuccessfully) for years to access the most appropriate support for her. By reaching out and...Learn More