Parent Resources

Parent Resources


    June 6, 2022

    Autism & Toilet Training: Tips to Help Parents and Caregivers

    Your child may be exhibiting signs they are ready to be toilet trained, or maybe you are just very eager to ditch the diapers. Toilet training a child requires the right balance between a child’s readiness to learn to use the toilet, and a parent’s readiness to do the training. When a child has autism, toilet training could come with specific challenges. What we know is that all children are different, so whether your child is diagnosed with autism or neurotypical, it’s a complicated process to sign up for. That said, a toilet trained child is quite an accomplishment for themselves and for the parent. Say goodbye to the cost of diapers or pull-ups and improve your child’s confidence in being able to independently use the restroom. It’s worthwhile to begin the process of toilet training once you believe it’s the right time to do so. Read More



    April 9, 2022

    Sleep Routine Tips for Children with Autism

    Research has shown that as many as 80% of children with autism spectrum disorder are affected by sleep issues. Inconsistent or inadequate sleep can exacerbate problem behaviors, so establishing a more consistent bedtime routine is worth the effort. When a child has a regular bedtime, it creates a sense of predictability in family routines. But it’s not only for Monday through Friday. It’s important that newly established routines carry through seven days a week. When all caregivers are committed and abide by a consistent bedtime routine, a child is more likely to learn the skills to fall asleep & stay asleep without disruption. This is especially important for children with autism, who are frequently most successful with predictable and consistent schedules.Bedtime routines should be short, predictable and expected. School-age children typically need 10-11 hours of sleep, however, there is research that suggests children with autism may need less. Read More



    February 8, 2022

    Sensory-Friendly Activities to Try When Winter Weather Keeps You Indoors

    Winter can be a challenging time of year for parents. When the temperatures plummet and the sun hides behind the clouds for months, finding appropriate and enjoyable activities for your child with autism can be difficult. If your child is currently involved in applied behavior analysis (ABA) therapy, your child’s behavior analyst can be a great resource to ask for activity ideas to keep your child happy and healthy throughout the winter months. Acorn Health is sharing several creative ideas that you can try at home with your child, and these activities also serve as opportunities to practice principles from ABA therapy at home. Read More



    December 16, 2021

    Keeping Holidays Joyful

    Navigating the holiday season can often feel more stressful than peaceful. Families are busy shopping, going to holiday events, and visiting friends and family members between normal daily obligations like work and school. Throw in other holiday traditions like visiting Santa, holiday train rides, and seeing Christmas lights, and the season is packed with potential triggers for children with autism. Not to mention, the hustle and bustle of the season can throw off a child’s everyday schedule, which is important for children with autism to maintain.  As a parent of a child with autism, you can make special memories while still keeping your child comfortable with these tangible tips and methods. Read More



    October 14, 2021

    Halloween Planning for Child with ASD

    Ghouls and goblins may be spooky fun for some — but for children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), this time of year can be challenging to navigate. Halloween is a holiday full of sensory overload including scary monster costumes, frightening decorations, elements of surprise and scaring one another during trick-or-treating, as well as dressing up and hiding behind disguises. It’s no wonder that Halloween may not be so happy for some families. There are steps parents can take to help their child navigate the holiday and avoid circumstances that could make them upset or uncomfortable. First, parents should talk about what to expect before going to an event or trick-or-treating. The elements of those traditions can be very confusing to a child with ASD.  Read More



    October 5, 2021

    Autism and Food Aversions: 6 Tips to Make Mealtime Easier

    Every night at dinner, many parents promise delicious ice cream if only their children eat the vegetables on their plates. For parents who have children with autism, the mealtime battles can feel much more difficult. It’s extremely common for children with autism to have food aversions and sensitivities. In fact, researchers at Marcus Autism Center at Emory University School of Medicine found children with autism had a 5 times more likely chance of mealtime challenges, including tantrums or ritualistic behaviors. Other research has shown that up to 70 percent of parents with autistic children say they experience very picky eating habits.  Read More