Being a parent or caretaker is no easy feat, especially when your child has more unique special needs. Although there are many ways for you to help your child, it’s never a bad idea to call in some reinforcements. An ABA specialist can help your child through some of the difficulties that they will encounter. If your child has difficulties with social situations, communication, and learning, finding them an ABA might be a good idea.

There are a few things to keep in mind when choosing an ABA. To help you make the right decision, here’s a list of the most important things to consider. Keep this list in mind and give your child the care and help they need to be the best they can be!

Look at their personality

The first thing you need to look at when finding the right ABA specialist for your child is their personality. When interviewing, many parents make the mistake of overlooking their ABA’s personality. You need to feel completely at ease with your ABA provider, and be able to communicate freely.

The therapist must be engaging, fun, patient, assured, and communicative. To find an ABA therapy provider for your child, you need to find someone that works for them. Your therapist and child’s personality should create a positive and comforting atmosphere. The best way to assess their personality and if it will blend well with your child is to have a meeting with them.

What’s their approach?

Aside from personality, the ABA provider’s approach to therapy is also an important factor. There’s no right or wrong approach, there are only different ways of doing things that benefit different kinds of people. From a stern, no-nonsense approach, to one with more patience and understanding. When choosing an ABA provider, you need to go with the one who has the best fit for your child’s needs.

You also need to consider their approach to developing a treatment plan for your child. When looking for an ABA therapist, avoid ones who take a universal, cookie-cutter approach to your child’s treatment. A good therapist will have a tailored and personalized treatment plan, unique for your child. Be sure to clear this up before hiring your ABA specialist.

Academic background and experience

When searching for the right ABA specialist, you can’t overlook their academic background and credentials. ABAs or BCBAs should be highly qualified in their craft, with a master’s or Ph.D. to show for it, as well as a passed certification exam. While interviewing, make sure to ask about the therapist’s credentials and certifications. As about their specialization if they have any as well.

Credit: Roman Kraft

Credentials and certifications are one thing, but working experience is another. While interviewing, ask your therapist about their working experience. How many families they’ve worked with, what they learned, as well as how much experience they have with a child like yours. Ask if they’ve worked with children in your child’s age group and their experiences to see if they’re a good fit.

How involved do you want to be?

Parental involvement is another important aspect that you need to consider when choosing an ABA specialist. For the treatment to be effective, both therapist and parents need to be on the same page regarding their roles during therapy. Therapists will take different approaches, involving the parents in therapy and treatment. Some ABAs are open to constant cooperation and input from family members throughout the treatment. Others prefer to take on a more hands-on approach and leave little to no room for the parents.

Discuss with your ABA what they expect of you and what you can expect from them during treatment. Ask about the kind of feedback and what kind of things you need to provide after each session and how. When choosing an ABA for your child, go with one who allows you to be as involved as you want in your child’s treatment.

Be patient

Last but not least, when choosing an ABA therapist for your child, you need to remember to exercise patience. It’s important to understand that the process will take some time and will require some adjustments and growing pains. ABA treatment is not a one size fits all program, and it can take some time to find the best fit for your child. It’s important to be present and put in the time and effort needed to provide for your child. Trial and error may seem uncomfortable and pointless, but it’s all working towards getting your child the help they need.

So there you have it! Choosing an ABA provider can be a heavy cross to carry, but it becomes lighter when you know what to be on the lookout for. When choosing an ABA, always look at their personality and approach, and choose what’s best for your child. Be sure to check their academic credentials, as well as their working experience, to choose the right person for the job. Make sure you can come to an agreement with your ABA therapist over your involvement as a parent, and remember to be patient. These things take time and effort, but it’s all worth it, in the end, to provide for your child!

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