5 Myths About ABA Therapy Debunked

Therapies and Resources for Children with Autism & Families

If you are the parent of a child who was recently diagnosed on the autism spectrum or another disorder affecting the ability to improve on socially significant behaviors, your world just became a little more complicated. People with good intentions will pop up from every nook and cranny of your life to tell you what worked and didn’t work for their family and household when they went through the same situation. You’ll be overwhelmed by online research, and you’ll hear so many opinions that you might not know what to do next. It can be a very challenging time.

You’ll hear many myths presented as facts, especially when it comes to ABA therapy. We encourage you to do your homework and find a therapy method that is a good fit for you and your child. At Peak Potential Therapy, we believe in ABA therapy, and here are five truths that we support to debunk some of the misconceptions about this form of therapy and its benefits.

Truth #1: ABA therapy is not just a tool for autism.
The misconception is that this therapy method only helps children on the autism spectrum. ABA therapy applies to anyone who needs help with communication skills, social skills, academics, reading and other adaptive learning skills.

Truth #2: ABA therapy teaches in a natural environment.
There is another myth about ABA that it is done at a desk, in a sterile environment that doesn’t resemble a real-life scenario. This couldn’t be further from the truth. ABA therapy can take place in any environment and is ideal for helping to modify skills in real-time and in a real-world environment.

Truth #3: ABA therapy is not a flash-in-the-pan new approach.
Ivar Lovass started to apply some of the philosophies of B.F. Skinner’s work in behavior analysis to human subjects as far back as the early 70s. In 1981, Lovaas published “The Me Book,” which was a foundation in modern ABA therapy. There are traditional approaches and new approaches that lean more heavily on a Verbal Behavior approach, but they have been around for a long time now, and there is plenty of evidence to support their effectiveness.

Truth #4: ABA therapy is much more than “programming” responses.
Sometimes people assume that soliciting responses through conditioning will create automatic and robotic responses in children. ABA therapy teaches language skills in natural settings, and that decreases the probability of the responses being memorized and encourages them to be more organic.

Truth #5: ABA Therapy is unique for each child.
No two children are the same, and no two ABA therapy treatment programs are the same. ABA can be adjusted to suit the needs of each child and can be adapted to match their skill sets and needs accordingly.

Peak Potential Therapy is proud to offer ABA therapy to Northeast Ohio’s children with speech therapy and behavioral needs. Contact us today to see how we might be able to help your child reach their “peak” potential.