Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is a neurodevelopmental condition characterized by challenges in social communication and interaction, as well as restricted and repetitive patterns of behavior, interests, or activities. ASD affects individuals differently, and its symptoms can range from mild to severe. Early diagnosis and intervention are crucial for maximizing the potential of individuals with ASD and enhancing their overall well-being.

ASD presents differently across the lifespan, with each age group facing distinct challenges and opportunities for growth. In children, autism may manifest through difficulties in communication, social interaction, and play, while adolescents might grapple with heightened social awareness, peer relationships, and academic pressures. Adults with autism often encounter challenges in employment, relationships, and independent living.

At Konick and Associates, we understand these complexities and are dedicated to providing comprehensive diagnostic assessment and tailored therapy services to support individuals with autism at every stage of life. Our goal is to help each person thrive by addressing their unique needs and enhancing their strengths in various settings. Explore our services to learn how we can assist you and your loved ones on this journey.

Common Signs of Autism

While the symptoms of autism can vary greatly across individuals and can change over the course of development, here are some of the most common symptoms that we see in the treatment setting.

In Children

  • Communication Challenges: Delayed or scripted speech, limited use of gestures, or difficulties in initiating and maintaining conversations.
  • Social Interaction: Limited eye contact, difficulty understanding social cues, lack of imaginative play or a preference for solitary play.
  • Behavioral Patterns: Repetitive movements (e.g., hand-flapping, rocking), strict adherence to routines, and intense interest in specific topics or objects.

In Teens

  • Social Relationships: Struggles with peer relationships, misunderstanding social norms, and experiencing anxiety in social situations.
  • Communication: Difficulty interpreting sarcasm, idioms, or abstract language, and maintaining a two-way conversation.
  • Behavioral Traits: Heightened sensitivity to sensory stimuli, rigid thinking patterns, and intense focus on specific interests.

In Adults

  • Interpersonal Relationships: Challenges in forming and maintaining relationships, understanding social boundaries, and recognizing others’ emotions.
  • Work and Daily Life: Difficulties with job interviews, workplace socialization, and managing daily routines and responsibilities.
  • Behavioral and Sensory Issues: Preference for routines, aversion to changes, and sensory sensitivities that can impact daily functioning.

While these are some of the common signs of autism, we recognize the diversity in how autism presents and are here to offer support through every stage of life. Our tailored assessments and therapies are designed to address these unique challenges and help individuals with autism lead fulfilling lives.

Assessment & Diagnosis

Our first encounter with a client or family often centers around their needs for a formal assessment. Our team of experienced clinicians utilizes best-practice testing methods to conduct in-depth evaluations that provide valuable insight into our clients’ emotional, behavioral, functional, and educational needs. By addressing the diverse needs of individuals with ASD from a comprehensive perspective, we strive to promote their overall well-being and success across environments.

Before making a diagnosis, we gather information from multiple sources, including parents, educational staff, partners, or other treatment providers, to completely understand the client’s situation. This collaborative approach allows us to formulate tailored recommendations for home and school, ensuring that our clients receive the support they need to thrive.

We offer a range of assessment services, including:

  • Diagnostics for autism spectrum disorder and other social developmental disorders
  • Behavior analysis to understand patterns of behavior and develop targeted interventions
  • Educational consultation and planning to address academic needs and promote success in the classroom
  • Life transition planning to navigate key milestones and transitions with confidence
  • Functional assessments for long-term care and support, such as social security and other service agency eligibility

Our assessments include thorough evaluations of:

  • Social communication skills
  • Behavioral patterns
  • Sensory processing
  • Cognitive abilities
  • Developmental history
  • Adaptive functioning
  • Comprehensive family and academic history through interviews and input from family members, educational staff, or therapists who know the client
  • Co-occurring conditions such as anxiety, depression, and ADHD
  • Previous academic and assessment reports

Through a combination of standardized tests, observation, and clinical interviews, we aim to provide accurate diagnoses tailored to each individual’s unique strengths and challenges.

Autism Treatment & Support

Following a diagnosis of ASD or another neurodiverse condition, we provide personalized treatment and support to help individuals and their families throughout their journey toward improved quality of life and independence. Our services include:

  • Parent Training: Empowering caregivers with the knowledge and skills to support their child’s development. We understand the importance of involving families in the therapy process. Our team provides parent training and support to empower families with the knowledge and skills to effectively support their loved ones with ASD. We offer guidance on implementing strategies at home and navigating challenges related to ASD.
  • Social Skills Training: Improving communication, relationship-building, and social interaction. Skills training through individual or group therapy sessions provides opportunities for individuals with ASD to learn and practice essential social skills in a supportive environment. Through structured activities and guided interactions, participants develop skills such as turn-taking, initiating conversations, and understanding nonverbal cues.
  • Distress Tolerance and Coping Skills: Managing anxiety, stress, and other challenges
  • Anger and Mood Management: Regulating emotions and promote positive coping strategies
  • Family Education and Support: Fostering understanding, communication, and resilience within the family unit
  • LGBTQIA+ and Identity Support: Addressing the unique needs and experiences of individuals with diverse identities. We recognize that members of the LGBTQ+ community with ASD may face unique challenges related to identity, acceptance, and social connection. Our therapists provide affirming and inclusive support for neurodivergent individuals exploring their gender identity, sexual orientation, and other aspects of identity.
  • Social-Emotional Skill Building: For individuals of all ages, from children to adults.
  • Transition Planning: Supporting the journey into adulthood. As individuals with ASD transition into adolescence and adulthood, we offer support services to facilitate successful transitions in various life domains, including education, employment, and independent living.
  • Couples Counseling: Improving communication, understanding, and connection. Couples will often benefit from relationship skills training to strengthen bonds, resolve conflicts, and promote mutual support.

Contact Us

Neurodiversity represents the unique and varied ways individuals experience and interact with the world. It recognizes neurological differences, such as autism, as a natural and valuable part of human diversity.

While neurodiversity reflects the beautiful spectrum of human experience, we at Konick & Associates acknowledge that many individuals with neurodiverse conditions encounter unique challenges in various aspects of life.

If you or a loved one would like to learn more about our diagnostic assessment or therapy services for autism spectrum disorder or other neurodiverse conditions, please don’t hesitate to contact us today. Our team is here to support you on your journey towards greater understanding, acceptance, and empowerment.

Explore our Blog page for the latest insights, tips, and resources related to ASD and other neurodivergent conditions.