Brushing teeth, getting dressed, dealing with autism

I’ve been noticing that my blogs get quite wordy…so I’ll keep this one brief so that someone may even read it in its entirety.
Helpful tip…if your child with autism doesn’t like to get dressed in the morning or for bedtime, get them distracted and dress them without them knowing it. Of course they’ll know it but keep them occupied and they won’t react in a bad way. Here’s what we do…
I (seth) am the one who brushes teeth with the kids every night…at first it was not pretty. Then I started singing them a “brush-brush” song while brushing their teeth…it’s the song from “Grease” when they’re at Sandy’s house for a slumber party…okay I’m a dork, what can I say? BUT…you control the brushing while you’re singing…if they try and take the brush away, mostly to chew on it or sling it around, you say, “oh, the song’s not over yet, it’s still my turn, your turn is after the song” and then the song is over, and I say, “William’s turn” and he can do what he wants and now he and Margaret are getting pretty good at brushing.
WHILE it’s William’s turn to brush his teeth…I carefully and stealthfully remove his clothes or finish drying him off from his bath and I casually grab his pajamas and put them on while he’s brushing his teeth. Now he’s accustomed to it and doesn’t mind at all. I started doing it this way because when he was younger he would take a bath, brush his teeth then run around the house or just start freaking out if I tried to get him dressed. I have him captivated by the toothbrush and the song and working on another task while I get him ready for bed. So if you’re having an issue either brushing your child’s teeth or getting them to put their PJ’s on before bedtime…come up with a little song that becomes a routine and then when they’re distracted, multi-task and get it all done.
Next blog…how to get your child with autism to sit completely still and not bother you while you’re watching your favorite college football team…yeah right!

One response to “Brushing teeth, getting dressed, dealing with autism

  1. You just described our bedtime routine! I have to change songs every so often though. And mornings I usually have to dress O while she eats breakfast.

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