Tyler, TX (KYTX) -- For many parents, finding out your child has Autism is unfamiliar territory, and opens up a world of questions. Ahead of the Tyler Run for Autism, we're highlighting Applied Behavior Analysis, or ABA therapy.
It's scientifically designed to help kids with Autism change their behavior. Games played help with social skills and cognitive abilities. The 16 clients at the Treatment and Learning Center for Children with Autism are as young as 18 months and old as 13 years.
"The best time to start it is when you see any type of skill deficit," Whitney Clements, a Board Certified Behavior Analyst at TLC, said.
She's worked at the Center for about a year and is happy to say ABA, which is on average 35 hours a week, makes a difference.
"Success is being able to go to the grocery store with mom and staying with her the whole time," Clements said.
Up until November of 2009, TLC in Tyler didn't exist. Alison Sterken says the need was evident.
"I had a lot of access to parents who had children not developing normally, who were desperate for help and a lot of those parents were going to Dallas for diagnosis," Sterken, with the Andrews Center, said.
Sterken says the future of the Center looks bright. "I just want the program to grow, the Andrews Center has been behind us all the way," Sterken said.
One way you can get involved is by participating in the Tyler Run for Autism. Even with insurance, some families pay up to $1200 a month in expenses for therapy.
All proceeds go to TLC in Tyler.