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How is Childhood Disintegrative Disorder Treated?

Treatment forChildhood Disintegrative Disorder is very similar to the treatments used for children with Autism. It is important to begin intense interventions as early as possible. In general, most treatment is highly structured and behaviour-based.

Another important part of treatment for Childhood Disintegrative Disorder is the inclusion of educating the parents, so that they are able to support their child's treatments within the home environment.

The needs of the individual will dictate which health professionals become involved in the treatment interventions. Families of a child with Childhood Disintegrative Disorder will often find themselves highly stressed with the disorder taking its toll emotionally on family members. It is therefore important that treatment provided is also supportive in nature for the families involved.

A range of professionals may be involved in the treatment of Childhood Disintegrative Disorder, these may include:

As there is no cure for Childhood Disintegrative Disorder, treatment normally follows a similar pattern to that used for children with Autism. Treatment options normally include the following:

  • Medication - there is no direct medicine that treats Childhood Disintegrative Disorder, however, behavioural problems may sometimes be controlled by medications used for anxiety, depression or antipsychotic drugs. Medication may also be provided for those who have difficulty maintaining a regular sleep-wake cycle.
  • Behaviour therapy - used by a variety of healthcare professionals to help children to learn or re-learn language, as well as social and self-care skills.
  • Speech and language therapy - to help improve, support and develop speech, language and communication skills.
  • Occupational therapy - to help support the individual in their functioning of everyday tasks. Occupational therapy encourages and promotes individuals to lead independent lives to their highest potential.
  • Physiotherapy - to support, develop and improve any motor, coordination or movement difficulties.

The outcome for individuals with Childhood Disintegrative Disorder is normally worse than it is for children with Autism. The loss of language, cognitive, self-care and social skills is normally severe and it is unlikely that these will improve. Children with Childhood Disintegrative Disorder normally need lifelong support with all activities of daily living, and may need residential care in the future. Early intervention is crucial for individuals with Childhood Disintegrative Disorder in supporting the child and their parents / carers on how best to manage their disorder.

To arrange an assessment with one of our therapists please contact us by emailing or calling 03300 886 693.

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