Pathological Demand Avoidance

Building Emotional Health in Children with Pathological Demand Avoidance

Posted by Jaco de Goede on

Building Emotional Health in Children with Pathological Demand Avoidance

We don’t have to look very far to find research giving us rather disheartening statistics about the poor emotional health of children with autistic spectrum disorder (ASD). Up to 70 percent of children with ASD develop mental health difficulties, as opposed to 10 percent of the typical population. Of course, as practitioners and parents of special children, we don’t need to read this research to know it; we live and experience the effects of these statistics every day.  For children with Pathological Demand Avoidance (PDA), where high anxiety is the main feature of the condition, the effects of poor emotional...

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PDA - a guide for parents and carers

Posted by Jaco de Goede on

PDA - a guide for parents and carers

From the National Autistic Society - see the original here. Pathological demand avoidance (PDA) is a profile that describes those whose main characteristic is to avoid everyday demands and expectations to an extreme extent. We explain the history of PDA, what a PDA profile is, the assessment process and what current research tells us. We also link to some useful resources for parents and educational professionals when supporting people with a PDA profile, and highlight some personal and professional insights.  History of PDA  Pathological demand avoidance (PDA) was a term first used by Professor Elizabeth Newson in the 1980s, to describe the...

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Pathological Demand Avoidance and Autism

Posted by Jaco de Goede on

Pathological Demand Avoidance and Autism

What is Pathological Demand Avoidance (PDA)? Pathological Demand Avoidance (PDA) is a profile of autism where people avoid daily demands, often utilizing ‘social’ strategies to do this. The underlying cause for this avoidance is said to be a high level of anxiety, usually from expectations of demands being placed on them, which can lead to a feeling of not being in control of a situation. History of PDA The late developmental psychologist, Elizabeth Newson, first used the term Pathological Demand Avoidance in the 1980s while serving as the director of the Child Development Research Unit at the University of Nottingham....

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Helpful approaches with PDA

Posted by Jaco de Goede on

Helpful approaches with PDA

From The PDA Society, probably one of the best resources on PDA. Autism and the PDA profile are dimensional – this means that approaches need to be tailored for each individual child, applied flexibly and reviewed regularly. There is no wrong or right way to do things, it’s about learning as much as you can about PDA, finding out what works best for you and your child and building a framework of approaches. This page covers: understanding behaviours adjusting your mindset optimising the environment reducing the perception of demands being cautious with rewards/praise/sanctions supporting sensory needs supporting social interaction & communication approaching behaviour...

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Self-help, coping strategies and therapies for adult PDAers

Posted by Jaco de Goede on

Self-help, coping strategies and therapies for adult PDAers

From The PDA Society, probably one of the best resources on PDA. These suggestions for self-help, coping strategies and therapies were assembled from a variety of first-hand accounts shared by adults, diagnosed or self-identifying as having a PDA profile (PDAers being their preferred term of reference), in books, blogs and on social media and from the other information for adults on the PDA Society website. A PDF version of this resource is also available to download here. The suggestions are grouped under the following headings: Recognising demands Recognising avoidance Identifying & understanding your PDA Self-acceptance Understanding masking Finding your tribe Managing, reducing...

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