What to Look for in an ABA Provider

You know ABA therapy is the gold standard of treatment options for children having been recently diagnosed with autism. Yet, choosing a provider can be a little scary at first. After all, you know your child better than anyone and, perhaps for the first time, you are trusting another person with some of their care.

To trust a caretaker with your child on the autism spectrum, you need to know the Board Certified Behavior Analysts (BCBAs) and Registered Behavior Technicians (RBTs) are not only experts in their field and experienced with children; you also need to know they will “click” with your specific child. 

Fortunately, as demand for ABA therapy centers has grown, so have the options parents have. That gives you the opportunity to be selective when looking for the perfect fit for your child. 

When seeking out a provider, continue to prioritize and advocate for your child’s needs, as well as your own. Ask the following questions, and consider where you would feel the most comfortable.

Ask: What Treatment Style Do They Use?

ABA therapy has two features to keep in mind when considering treatment style: it is data-driven, and it can absolutely be customized to meet your individual child’s needs.

As ABA therapy is a behavioral science, your BCBA should be tracking your child’s progress, collecting data, and making changes to the treatment plan accordingly. Be sure to ask your provider how this information is recorded, and how they will report it to you.

Another thing you want to watch out for when considering an ABA therapy provider is one who uses a one-size-fits-all approach. Instead, look for a provider willing to tailor a treatment plan to suit your child’s needs. It should be one that focuses on the source of a behavioral problem rather than solely the actual behavior. 

A provider able to customize plans to fit childrens’ individual needs will be able to assist your child at different moments of their lives, not just early childhood. Because of its ability to focus on specific skills, ABA therapy can be applied to significant moments such as preparing for school or remaining calm for a doctor’s visit.

What Experience and Expertise Do They Have?

Part of being comfortable with any new adult working with your child, especially one with special needs, is knowing they have the knowledge to do so. When you talk to a potential ABA therapy provider, ask about the backgrounds of the RBTs and BCBAs who will be supervising and teaching your child. 

If your child is of preschool age, for instance, find out whether or not they have experience working with preschool-aged children. If your child struggles with transitions to the school classroom, ask whether or not they have worked on this skill in the past. Knowing they have the skillset to work with your individual child can help put your mind at ease during a stressful time. 

Ask: How Will I, as the Parent, be Involved?

A knowledgeable and experienced ABA provider will know how valuable input from the parents is to their work. Make sure you will be involved throughout the treatment process. With parents and providers working together, ABA therapy yields its best results.

With your ABA provider, you should be able to:

  • Give input on the skills your child needs to develop
  • Learn the strategies used so you can implement them at home
  • Receive feedback from the RBT following each session
  • Be knowledgeable of the treatment plan in place

That way, you will be fully informed and part of the team to help your child reach their fullest potential.

How do I Know if the Provider is a Good Fit?

After learning all the facts about an ABA therapy provider, sit down and consider your own feelings. It’s important to choose a provider that you, and eventually your child, feel comfortable with. You will need to communicate openly with this person or team, and feeling at ease with their personality type only makes this easier. 

You know, more than anyone, the types of personalities your child “clicks” with, so look for a provider you believe can keep your child engaged, while also feeling supported. For the best results, your child and the RBT need to establish a good relationship.

Springtide Child Development Center

The Springtide Way

At Springtide, we use an integrated care model to make the most out of the time with your child. We work with each individual parent and child to learn their specific needs, collaborate across the child’s network, and create a customized treatment program that promotes success in multiple areas.

Our treatment plans consider the whole child. Along with ABA therapy, we provide speech therapy, occupational therapy, functional living skills, school readiness, social skills, and language acquisition. That way, your child only needs to become comfortable with one place and one staff to obtain all the care necessary. 

To learn why Springtide is the chosen provider for families of individuals on the autism spectrum and to find out more about what we do, please reach out on our website, email us at hello@myspringtide.com, or give us a call at 888-260-1609.

Reach out today and speak with one of our enrollment specialists to get started with Springtide

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Springtide Child Development was awarded an Award of Distinction with The Behavioral Health Center of Excellence (BHCOE) and is a member of The Council of Autism Service Providers (CASP). These awards celebrate exceptional special needs providers that are leading the way in the areas of clinical quality, staff satisfaction, qualifications, and consumer satisfaction.
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