Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Can Improve Emotion Regulation in Children with Autism

Posted on May 14, 2018

This study was led by Jonathan Weiss, associate professor in the Department of Psychology, Faculty of Health and CIHR Chair in Autism Spectrum Disorders Treatment and Care Research, and is the first to find that that CBT can improve more than just anxiety.

During the study, sixty-eight children from 8 to 12 years of age and their parents, mostly mothers, participated in the study and were randomly assigned to two groups: one group receiving 10 sessions beginning right away and another group waiting to receive treatment later. Researchers tracked how their emotions and behaviour changed prior to and after treatment.

It was shown that children who received this treatment right away improved in their ability to manage their emotions, and in overall mental health problems. Also, a clinician who was not involved in the direct provision of the treatment and did not know if children were in the treatment or waitlist group rated 74% of children receiving treatment as improved, compared to only 31% of those in the waitlist group.

Researchers are now looking at how this intervention can be used for other neurodevelopmental conditions that often overlap with autism, such as ADHD. They also believe that children grow and develop and improve within the context of healthy families and this intervention aids to help the family more broadly to be the agent of change.

Category(s):Autism spectrum disorders, Child and/or Adolescent Issues

Source material from Science Daily

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