Autism Spectrum Disorder is a developmental disorder that affects verbal and non-verbal communication and social interaction. Just as spectrum describes the rainbows of light, it indicates the stupendous diversity of symptoms among patients. No two autistic children are the same, although all of them face speech and language difficulties, sleep and attention problems, intellectual disabilities, epilepsy. Many autistic children are quite smart, but their lack of communication skills effectively creates a troublesome environment for everyone.

 A great way to help these children is through mobile applications; apps for autistic children can help them learn and do a lot of other activities.

Also read: How to ensure a playdate for kids with Autism does not feel like walking on eggshells

Using specially designed apps for kids with autism is one great way to help and improve their condition. Apps can’t replace the everyday opportunities for learning, yet what they can do is help kids fill gaps created by autism between them and their environment. Easy to comprehend imagery and distinguishable sounds makes it easier to concentrate and most importantly demonstrate what they’ve learnt. Specially designed apps help create a bridge between the child and his parents. They also effectively teach new motor skills and let them practise those skills consistently.

Some apps help track health and behavior changes by constructing a schedule for kids and making it easier on parents.

A few of the best applications for children with ASD and their parents are listed below:

Educational apps:

  • AUTISM EDUCATION (AutEdu)

This a great educational android app, improving the way the child’s teacher and their parents communicate so that their teaching techniques and their approach towards the child is aligned. The child’s data on their behaviour is shown through this app, from which the child’s educator can assess behavioural patterns, dealing with him/her accordingly. AutEdu is a resourceful app for teachers with ASD patients to accommodate their learning needs. It has  reviews from thousands of users who have benefited and provided positive feedback.

  • AUTISM READ AND WRITE PRO

Statistics show that reading comprehension is the most challenging task for autistic students to perform. This app enables kids with ASD learn the basics of reading and writing. The easy to use format is suitable for every age, and the picture references help them concentrate and improve their writing as well. This free android app is designed by Green Bubble labs and has quite an impressive rating graph. 

Communication apps:

  • PROLOQUO2GO

Proloquo2go is a symbol-based AAC (advanced audio coding) application with innovative features designed for individuals who cannot speak. It provides speech therapy and helps develop language and communication skills. It is customizable and adapts to every need of the user with research-based vocabulary from symbolic communication to a higher level of literacy. Proloquo2go is an award-winning play store application for IOS. Though this app is a bit expensive, its users are always happy and report that it’s worth the investment.

  • AVAZ LITE 

A helpful app for non-verbal children with ASD. This app provides the therapists, friends and family with more than 15,000 symbols. Users can either purchase the app or pay for it monthly, after a seven -day free trial to see if the app meets the needs of the child. Messages can also be shared through emails and social media. The menu provides options so that it can be changed with the child’s increasing age and ability.

Functional skills apps:

  • CHOICEWORKS

This app is designed for encouraging planning and self-awareness in ASD kids . It is a splendid app for building visual schedules for routine tasks. Users improve time management skills and learn patience when they’re upset. Caretakers, parents, therapist use this app to keep ASD children motivated, on task as well as to understand their emotions and feelings. Using this app, a child can learn how to calm down and redirect by reminding him of steps he can take during intense emotions like anger. Choiceworks helps with everyday problems faced by the child. Unlimited schedules can be added to the app, ensuring the child manages his time correctly.

  • BIRDHOUSE FOR AUTISM

Birdhouse is an excellent app for parents and caretakers to track ASD children’s moods, behaviour, medical information, schedules and nutrition. Parents can easily organize and follow up with their child’s sleep cycle, diet, medical prescription. Once the user’s data is entered, parents can easily compare and examine behavioural patterns. It is an IOS/android app rated as valuable for assisting parents with new strategies to help their child face daily routine problems and organize every piece of information in one place. This app dramatically helps to locate meltdown stimuli, behaviour patterns and insight into how the child’s brain operates.

  • FIND MY FAMILY, FRIENDS AND IPHONE- LIFE360 LOCATOR

Find my family, friends and IPHONE- life360 locator is a mobile app for autistic children and teens that keeps them connected with their family and friends by showing their position on a map. Autistic teens can receive alert messages from their family when they leave home or workplace. This app ensures the parent’s peace of mind, knowing their child’s whereabouts. Autistic teens often leave their houses uninformed, which is precisely why this app is designed. Parents are even notified if their child’s phone battery is low so that they can track their exact location. This app is designed for children of nine years and above.

As hard as it is for ASD patients, their parents and their relatives, this age of technology has helped them deal with some of the many difficulties and spread awareness among others. 

Contributed by :Marc Anderson

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