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Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics Blog

Back to School Tips!

Posted On: August 14, 2019 Posted By: DBP team Tags: Autism Spectrum Disorder

Children with autism tend to do better when a consistent routine is established but major transitions such as summer vacation to starting a new school year can be disruptive to their comfortable routine. The Marcus Autism Center and Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles list several ways you can ease your child’s back to school stress and can help him/her transition into the new school year more smoothly. 

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Social stories and autism

Posted On: July 10, 2019 Posted By: DBP team Tags: Autism Spectrum Disorder

“Social story” is a term created by Carol Gray. The purpose of this learning tool is to create and sustain a meaningful interaction between individuals and are particularly helpful for people with autism.

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Tips for traveling with children with autism

Posted On: June 27, 2019 Posted By: DBP team Tags: Autism Spectrum Disorder, Summer Vacation

As summer vacation begins, families will be planning their vacation destinations. Keeping your children safe and occupied during travel and vacation becomes a priority.   

The Director of Care Coordination at the Marcus Autism Center of Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta, Cheryl Rhodes, has several suggestions about traveling with children with autism and provides some tips to make the parents’ and children’s experiences much more enjoyable.

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Youngest Possible Age to Screen for Autism

Posted On: June 18, 2019 Posted By: DBP team Tags: Autism Spectrum Disorder

Previous research has suggested that the recommended age of diagnoses for autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is between 18 to 24 months, but a new study is suggesting that autism can be reliably diagnosed at an earlier age. 

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New Television Show with an Actress with Autism

Posted On: June 04, 2019 Posted By: DBP team Tags: Autism Spectrum Disorder

A new comedy series on Freeform called “Everything is Gonna Be Okay” is coming to television very soon! This show will be featuring an actress who is on the spectrum: Kayla Cromer. The channel has not announced a premiere date yet but will include 10 episodes for the season. Kayla also speaks on the matter of having proper portrayal of characters.

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Integrating RITA-T Into New Systems

Posted On: May 28, 2019 Posted By: DBP team Tags: Autism Spectrum Disorder

As interest continues to grow for the RITA-T, multiple practices have begun integrating the screening tool into their healthcare systems. 

To date, the most noteworthy integration of the RITA-T is in the Alberta Healthcare System (located in the Canadian province of Alberta).

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In-Person RITA-T Workshop Training: Are You Interested?

Posted On: May 23, 2019 Posted By: DBP team Tags: Autism Spectrum Disorder

In addition to our online training for the RITA-T (, we have been actively doing in person RITA-T workshop trainings.

Dr. Roula Choueiri will be training groups and lead discussions in ways to integrate this screening test into their own practice's system.

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Autism and Stem Cell Therapy

Posted On: May 16, 2019 Posted By: DBP team, Dr. Roula Choueiri Tags: Autism Spectrum Disorder

The Stem Cell Institute in Panama City, Panama is investigating therapies to reverse and/or change the characteristics of autism spectrum disorders (ASD). The stem cells are taken from umbilical cord tissue with the idea that specific cytokines are correlated with the severity of autism. A review paper from 2007 implies that the abnormalities caused by the inflammatory cytokines is causative and the idea proposed is that the stem cells harvested from the umbilical cord blood, would be useful for treating autism.

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Measles Vaccinations and Autism

Posted On: February 05, 2019 Posted By: DBP team, Dr. Roula Choueiri Tags: Autism Spectrum Disorder
  • With the start of the new year, several reports of measles outbreaks have come to light. These outbreaks are attributed to unvaccinated children spreading illnesses including measles to newborn children who are too young to receive vaccines
  • Washington state has seen almost 50 reported cases of measles. The condition is not just limited to a fever, runny nose, and cough – measles can have neurologic side effects, increased morbidity and in some cases death.
  • The idea behind not vaccinating children has been strongly emphasized and based on a study that was done in 1998 by Dr. Andrew Wakefield that was later discovered to have been completely fabricated
  • Measles was eradicated in 2000 but following the publishing of Wakefield’s study, vaccinations started to decline and previously eradicated diseases such as whooping cough and measles started to reappear
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SAFE and SPOOKY! Halloween Part 2: A Deeper Look with Practical Tips

Posted On: October 28, 2017 Posted By: Dr. William Garrison

The three major practical concerns parents have at Halloween time involve their child’s safety, the effects of eating more sweets than normal, and changes in child or teen behavior during this time. These are simple things parents can do to help be proactive in addressing these concerns. Read more >

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Keeping Halloween SAFE and SPOOKY

Posted On: October 11, 2017 Posted By: DBP team

Keeping Halloween SAFE and SPOOKYHalloween is an exciting time for many children who like to dress up and walk from house to house collecting treats. Imaginations are delightfully triggered by spooky decorations and costumes, and the reward of a bag full of candy at the end of the night is about as good as a reward can get! Read more >

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Bonjour Montreal, the RITA-T goes back to Canada!

Posted On: September 02, 2017 Posted By: Dr. Roula Choueiri

montreal trainingThe RITA-T has already been to Calgary, now off to Montreal! At the invitation of Dr. Nadia Abuzeid, I visited du centre “Voyez les choses a ma facon” (See Things My Way) to meet the members of the center and to talk about the RITA-T. I spent the day training her wonderful team going over the RITA-T process: its administration scoring, and training. Read more >

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What is "Anniversary Trauma" and how can I help my child cope?

Posted On: August 14, 2017 Posted By: DBP team, Dr. William Garrison

Anniversary Trauma in ChildrenPsychologists have a term for when children or adults show recurring emotional distress and worry associated with a previous stressful life event - such as the loss of a loved one, a major accident or illness, or any episode of intense negative stress.  Read more >   

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Preschoolers: Becoming there own little person!

Posted On: August 03, 2017 Posted By: DBP team

Developmental Milestones part 3: 3-5 years, PreschoolPreschoolers are known for their "magical thinking." It's a wonderful stage in which they believe in fairies, Santa Claus, the tricks of magicians, and when they try to be their own little person. The downside is that they begin to develop fears and nightmares. You cannot reason with a child this age and convince her that no monster lurks under her bed. Better to give her some sort of magic power over that monster. Read more >

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Toddler years: What is my child thinking?

Posted On: July 29, 2017 Posted By: Dr. William Garrison Tags: Autism Spectrum Disorder

Developmental Milestones Part 2: ToddlersToddlers are capable of performing many physical acts on their own. They can walk, pull on or off (mainly off) their clothes, open intriguing drawers, feed themselves, and control their bladder to relieve themselves in the toilet. Their newfound independence causes some come common concerns for parents such as: separation difficulties, temper tantrums, oppositional behavior, bedtime, toileting and more. Read more >

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