AARC Tip of the Month | October 2018 | View as Webpage
Next Steps After Diagnosis

It is easy to become overwhelmed when you or your child are first diagnosed with autism. There is a plethora of information available, and it can be difficult to sort out what is credible and what is applicable for your situation. Here are some great statewide and online resources for getting started on this new journey:

Books/Kits/Information to get you started:

  • The SESA Library has a large volume of resources related to autism and other low incidence disabilities. They are free to check out for anyone in the state of Alaska. Check out Anne's recommendations for families dealing with a new diagnosis below!

  • The CDC Website provides up-to-date information on the current research on autism. It is a great resource for verifying information and answering many of the questions that may come up as you disclose a diagnosis to family, etc.

Find a provider:

  • The Autism Society of Alaska is located in Fairbanks, but serves the entire state. They are nationally affiliated and work to connect families with resources, offer autism-awareness events, and community enrichment.

  • Stone Soup Group can help families navigate services and how to apply for them. They offer training and conferences throughout the year, as well as a Parent Navigator program for peer-to-peer support.

Financial Assistance:

If you have questions or need to connect to local/regional resources, please contact us for an individualized resource consultation at aarc@sesa.org or 907-334-1331!
Are you concerned about your child's development? Check out these resources:
Take the M-CHAT (Modified Checklist for Autism in Toddlers) . The M-CHAT is a tool that parents can use to help screen their child. After parents take the survey the results can be interpreted by your pediatrician.

Talk to your local infant learning program (birth to 3) or school district special education director (ages 3+)

If you're in rural Alaska, see if the Pediatric Neurodevelopmental Outreach & Autism Screening Clinic will be in your area this year. Pediatric Neurodevelopmental Specialists from the Children’s Hospital & Medical Center in Seattle Washington provide screenings to children (ages 1-12) in rural Alaska. The 2018-2019 schedule is:
Fairbanks - December 3 & 4, 2018
Valdez - December 5, 2018
Ketchikan - April 15 & 16, 2019
Kodiak - April 22 & 23, 2019
Homer - April 24, 2019
Fairbanks - May 2 & 3, 2019

Are you ready to seek a diagnosis for your child/yourself?
Diagnosis for ages 6 and under:

Diagnosis for all ages:
Resources of the Month:
The resources of the month are available in the Special Education Service Agency (SESA) Library. Search for items on the   SESA website , or contact the librarian, Anne Freitag, at   afreitag@sesa.org   or 907-334-1301 

Electronic books may be accessed from anywhere in the state. If you've used our ebooks before,   go to the login  page here.  If you haven't, please contact Anne so she can set up a username and password for you.   Learn more about ebooks here .
Asperger's Syndrom e: A guide for parents and professionals
By: Tony Attwood
Future Horizons, 2004
ISBN: 9781853025778
Description: Clinical psychologist Dr. Tony Attwood presents a three-hour workshop covering characteristics and diagnosis of Asperger's syndrome. Dr. Attwood offers suggestions for communicating with and developing social skills in children and adults with Asperger's syndrome.
Autism Early Intervention: Fast Facts
By: Raun D. Melmed
Future Horizons, 2007
ISBN: 9781932565591
Description: "Parents who find out their child might have autism are overwhelmed with doctors, therapists, and information all at once. It can be difficult for these parents to find the answers they need in a sea of resources... answers questions such as: What is autism? What are the signs of autism? Who is involved in my child's evaluation? What should I expect at the time of diagnosis? What are the goals of early intervention? How do I choose which treatments are right for my child?...offers: easy-to-read charts, a glossary of autism terms, and a comprehensive, annotated list of resources." - Amazon description
Autism? Asperger's? ADHD? ADD?: A parent's roadmap to understanding and support
By: Diane Drake Burns
Future Horizons Inc., 2005
ISBN: 9781932565263
Description: "Suspect there's something "different" about your child? This book will help you navigate those early stages of your child's life when a diagnosis is nowhere in sight. Not knowing how to help your child can leave you totally frustrated, or frightened into inaction by a vision of what may lie ahead." - Publisher's website .
Caring for a Child with Autism: A practical guide for parents
By: Martine Ives & Nell Munro
Illustrations by: Fiona Bleach
Jessical Kingsley Publishers, 2002
ISBN: 9781853029967
Description: This comprehensive and readable guide answers the questions commonly asked by parents and carers following a diagnosis of autism, and discusses the challenges that can arise in home life, education and socializing. The authors cover a wide variety of therapies and approaches to autism, providing clear, unbiased information so that families will be able to evaluate different options for themselves. Throughout, the emphasis is on home and family life, and the everyday difficulties encountered by families of autistic children." - Publisher's website .
Christian's Way: What to expect when your child is diagnosed with autism
By: Christie Maajoun
Foreword by: Carol Gray
Ghost Publishing, 2017
ISBN: 9780998699226
Description: "Your child is autistic. It's not the end of the world, but you have to educate yourself and act quickly. Buckle up; you're in for a bumpy ride. In Christians Way, Christie unashamedly shares her personal story. Once she suspected her son, Christian was different, and after getting the diagnosis, she shares with us how raising her precious special needs child changed her life. This book is designed to motivate and inspire families that have recently found out their child has autism or have been raising a child on the autism spectrum. Christie has graciously included some stories of other parents in similar situations, who share their insight and experiences. She has also included expert advice from medical professionals, and information about a special foundation that provides millions of dollars in aid to needy families. Most importantly, Christie hopes this book educates parents, so they don't waste time trying things that don't work or wait too long to seek help. Every wrong decision hurts your child and delays his or her development. Time is of the essence." - page 4 of cover
Could it be Autism?: A parent's guide to the first signs and next steps
By: Nancy D. Wiseman & Kim Painter Koffsky
Broadway Books, 2006
ISBN: 9780767919739
Description: Presents early detection and intervention strategies for Autism and spectrum disorders, providing a milestone checklist beginning at four months and discussing formal screening, diagnosis, and how to cope, choose treatments, see "success" as a personal term, keep family relationships healthy, and be an advocate.
Demystifying Autism Spectrum Disorders: A guide to diagnosis for parents and professionals
By: Carolyn Thorwarth Bruey
Woodbine House, 2004
ISBN: 1890627348
Description: "Parents of a child with an autism spectrum disorder benefit from clear, yet comprehensive information concerning their child’s behavior. This is an invaluable guide for parents, educators, and caregivers. Demystifying Autism Spectrum Disorders is an excellent tool for parents who don’t fully understand their child’s diagnosis or wonder whether there is another ASD diagnosis that might be more appropriate. Demystifying Autism Spectrum Disorders will give parents the confidence to participate in their child’s diagnosis and play a critical role in their child’s treatment."
The Everyday Advocate: Standing up for your child with autism
By: Areva Martin
New American Library, 2010
ISBN: 9780451230218
Description: A nationally recognized autism advocate provides step-by-step instructions to parents raising and advocating for a child with autism, and explains how to safeguard the rights of their special-needs children both in and out of school.
The First Year: Autism spectrum disorders: an essential guide for the newly diagnosed child
By: Nancy Wiseman & Robert Rich
Foreword by: Kenneth Bock
Da Capo Lifelong, 2009
ISBN: 9780786745371
Description: "When parents learn that their child has autism, the news can be devastating, even paralyzing. Meanwhile, the first 12 months after diagnosis are the most important when it comes to intervention. As a parent of a child with autism, Nancy D. Wiseman knows firsthand how difficult it can be to unravel complex issues, discover what questions to ask, and find effective treatments... offers both compassionate insight and a wealth of information for diagnoses from Asperger's to classic autism... walks parents through a wide range of medical and lifestyle concerns, helps them navigate the healthcare, insurance, and educational systems, and ensures the best possible outcome for their child." - Publisher's website .
Gravity Pulls You In: Perspectives on parenting children on the autism spectrum
Edited By: Kyra Anderson & Vicki Forman
Woodbine House, 2010
ISBN: 9781606130025
Description: "View the universe of autism--its marvels, chaos, and life-changing impacts--through the eyes of the contributors to Gravity Pulls You In. In 33 essays and poems, mothers and fathers raising children on the autism spectrum explore their lives in the context of autism's own special gravity, discovering what's important and what they find centering. Their slice-of-life depictions are a refreshing departure from the usual diagnosis/grief/acceptance arc of many autism accounts. Readers are invited into contributors' lives, where they're sure to find an attitude, a circumstance, an epiphany they can relate to." - Back cover.
My Child has Autism, Now What? 10 steps to get you started
By: Susan Larson Kidd
Jessica Kingsley Publishers, 2011
ISBN: 9781849058414
Description: This practical book will be essential and empowering reading for every parent whose child has recently been diagnosed with autism or for parents still struggling with where to begin to help their child. Dr. Larson Kidd's approach draws from the vast amount of information available on parenting a child with autism and distills it into ten manageable steps. It covers the key aspects of life with a child on the autism spectrum. Ready-to-implement strategies are outlined simply and clearly and are firmly grounded in the author's extensive experience of supporting children with autism.
Parenting on the Autism Spectrum: A survival guide
By: Lynn Adams
2nd Edition, Plural Publishing, 2013
ISBN: 9781597565264
Description: "...offers a collection of practical, real-world information and insights to help parents do just that: plan for their child's needs... combines current research and literature reviews with the experiences gleaned by the author as she has worked with families impacted by ASD for the past twenty years. Most books on autism address school needs, but parents want to know how they can make their home lives most functional. This book provides that information, down to how to arrange rooms in the home for the most positive outcomes. This resource can also be used by professionals as they work with and support families with children on the autism spectrum. For the second edition, the author has updated the text and added content to make the book even more valuable to parents. New features include: a new chapter on children with the Asperger syndrome label; a new chapter on young adulthood and transition issues; more hands-on activities that will allow parents to help their children develop communication skills." - Amazon description.
Understanding Autism for Dummies
By: Stephen Shore & Linda Rastelli
Wiley, 2006
ISBN: 9780764525476
Description: "... provides help-and hope-by explaining the differences between various types of autism and delivering the lowdown on behavioral, educational, medical, other interventions. Featuring inspiring autism success stories as well as a list of organizations where people who support those with autism can go for additional help, it offers practical advice on how to educate children as well as insights on helping people with autism use their strengths to maximize their potential in life. " - Publisher's website .
Your Special Grandchild: A book for grandparents of children diagnosed with Asperger syndrome
By: Josie Santomauro
Illustrated by: Carla Marino
Jessica Kingsley Publishers, 2009
ISBN: 9781843106593
Description: "Intended as a support tool in the initial period after diagnosis, this book addresses questions or concerns that grandparents might have, such as 'How did my grandchild get AS?' and 'What happens now?'. Also included are poems, stories, illustrations and activities to help grandparents come to terms with a diagnosis of AS." - Publisher .
Family to Family: A guide to living life when a child is diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder
World Class Communication Technologies, LLC
Executive producer: Bruce MacLearn
Producer: Kelly Luchtman
Starfish Specialty Press, 2004
Description: Designed to assist families in dealing with the daily challenges of autism spectrum disorders
My Next Steps: A parent's guide to understanding autism
University of Washington Autism Center
Project Direction: Raphael Bernier, Jamie Winter, Jen Varley
Produced by: Gigantic Planet with funding by the Washing State Legislature
The Center, 2008
Description: "A first-time diagnosis of autism in a child can be an overwhelming and stressful time for parents and families. My Next Steps: A Parent's Guide to Understanding Autism serves as a roadmap for parents dealing with this challenging period and seeks to provide answers to the many questions that arise during the journey from autism diagnosis to treatment. The DVD is produced by the University of Washington Autism Center and funded by Washington State legislature. Through interviews with experts and treatment providers, My Next Steps familiarizes parents with topics that are crucial in providing the best support for their child." - Autism Center website .
Straight Talk About Autism: With parents & kids
Attainment Company, Inc.
Cicero, NY
Distributed by Program Development Associate, 2008
Description: Features interviews with kids with autism and their parents. They examine the key issues encountered during childhood and adolescence. "Childhood issues" covers the difficulty of getting an accurate diagnosis, parental acceptance of the disability, dealing with communication deficits, and beginning school. "Adolescent issues" features hypersensitivities, splinter skills, teasing, Circle of Friends programs, social skills, school-to-work transition and independent living.
Alaska Autism Resource Center | 866-301-7372 | aarc@sesa.org | www.AlaskaARC.org