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What is applied behavior analysis and why is it more preferred than other therapeutic methods for autism?

In retrospect, autism therapy is not just composed of one specific type of treatment but is usually a collection of procedures which targets specific autistic behaviors. On the other hand, applied behavior analysis (ABA) is considered as a preferred therapeutic modality mostly because it is frequently used and offered by most therapists, and was indemnified by school programs and initial interventions.

It is, however, important to note that ABA was created decades ago and is just one of the numerous types of behavior therapies that are offered to children who are on the autistic spectrum. Currently, applied behavior analysis is considered as the therapy where all other treatments were derived from, and is commonly known in the therapeutic field.

Why ABA?

Due to a certain number of reasons, ABA is the most renowned and suggested autism spectrum therapy. These reasons are:

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  1. ABA Has Been Around For Ages

Applied behavior analysis is a derivative of behaviorism. Behaviorism was an old approach that was created in the 1920s by the behaviorist, B.F. Skinner, who was contemplated to be the most significant American psychologist during that time. Due to the outgrowth, ABA became the most well-understood and well-established strategies among others, though it is a gentler, more broad-ranging than behaviorism.

  1. ABA Was Given Sufficient Focus

ABA outcomes were intensively investigated for the past few decades. Applied behavior analysis has become the basis for reference since it has established clear and measurable objectives, and is carried out and practiced in the same manner by most therapists.

  1. Training For ABA Is Simple

Due to therapists utilizing applied behavior analysis similarly, it is relatively more straightforward to train specific individuals for the approach to be implemented. Usually, ABA programs are widely developed by trained professionals; however, paraprofessionals can be assigned to execute the technique.

  1. ABA Is Effective In Challenging Behaviors

Children who are on the autism spectrum exhibit specific behaviors which are dissimilar, and there will be moments wherein the responses shown are bordering on the challenging side much like aggression and self-destruction or abuse. Applied behavior analysis is often recognized as the efficient method to minimize such adverse, injurious behaviors and at the same time, encourage desired demeanors.

  1. Measurement Of Success Is Made Achievable

For the reason that ABA is set on specific, concrete objectives, measuring success has been comparatively more accessible than other therapeutic processes, making ABA the gold standard in autism therapy. Questioning whether ABA is the more effective solution does not emerge because complexities arise when comparing methods head-to-head.

Source: defense.gov

The Necessity Of The Approach

Therapists adept with applied behavior analysis work hard in building desirable and acceptable behaviors while ending unacceptable ones. More often than not, children who are on the autism spectrum have difficulty in cultivating specific desirable results such as interacting with other people, utilizing speech accurately, executing eye contact, and so much more. On the other hand, some of the unwanted behaviors that are focused on and eliminated by the approach are kicking, flapping, spinning, or hitting.

Due to the effectiveness of ABA in dealing with the abovementioned issues, it has been considered as the best type of autism therapy for years and is widely used by autism therapists around the world.