Autism is one of the most prevalent, yet least understood, developmental disabilities in the U.S. As of March 2014, the incidence of autism in the country has increased by 30 percent; it now affects 1 in 88 children according to the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Despite this sense of urgency, experts are still at a loss on how to diagnose this disorder, let alone how to treat it completely.
One of the main impediments is the fact that the body of knowledge for autism is still in its infancy. A few decades ago, autism was simply identified as an intellectual disability. Yet as the CDC found out, a large number of children with autism possess above average IQ. Autism was also thought of as a permanent disability, but some people who were diagnosed with autism in their childhood eventually “matured” as they got older, exhibiting only minor symptoms like the lack of social skills.
While there is still much to discover about autism, experts agree that early diagnosis and intervention are essential to an autistic child’s development. Autism can be diagnosed in children as young as two years old, and they can benefit from therapies that improve their language, play, and motor skills. Therapy also needs to be tailored to a child’s specific needs and may involve certain toys, like an American boy doll.
The world has a long history with dolls. While dolls were primarily created to serve as children’s playthings, these days, they are more than mere toys. Girls no longer just play with dolls so they can pretend to have a fashion show, changing the dolls’ outfits and accessories by the minute – dolls have become so much more.
In the United States, there is clear evidence that dolls offer more benefits than just being kids’ companions during their playtime. For instance, there are dolls for girls that help them learn about iconic female figures in history. This way, girls find out more about their heritage and the role that they play within a community.
Dolls can be an instrument to help out a certain group of people or an organization. This is similar to what took place Valentine’s Day this year in San Diego, California, where doll collectibles were sold by a thrift shop owner. The proceeds of the doll sale went out to a program that aims to help the homeless.
Dolls can also be used to create awareness for a cause. Some stores sell dolls that come with booklets containing information about disabilities. These dolls, which come in both female and male forms, are great gifts for kids with siblings with disabilities. With the booklets, kids can understand the situation and perhaps learn how to empathize with their siblings.
Dolls, like other toys, deserve a lot of tender loving care. If you bought your child a couple of exquisite 18 inch dolls from a popular seller, that investment in your child’s happiness will be for naught if the toy is not properly maintained after many hours of play. Then again, you ought to know that cleaning an 18-inch doll takes some time and finesse.
You can start by temporarily removing all of the doll’s clothes and putting them on a clean surface. Run wet wipes or a moist towelette all over the doll’s body to get most of the dust and stains off. However, some stains may be tough to remove, hence using a wet cloth to gently rub over the stained area could be an effective solution. A soft-bristled toothbrush can be used to thoroughly clean the doll’s elbows, knees, and face. A second wash cloth that has been dampened and wrung of water can work in making the final wipes, after which you can leave the doll to dry.
The hair also warrants special attention. Prepare a bowl of water mixed with drops of baby or wig shampoo then dip the doll’s hair in it for a few minutes. Wash the mix off with cold water and lightly brush the hair.
Keeping your child’s doll neat and clean is sure to make your little one happy, not to mention that he or she will have a toy that is free from germs and other harmful microorganisms.
For many people, growing up with a sibling is something they’ll cherish for life. Having someone by their side as they make the transition from childhood to adulthood is one of life’s gifts. This is true even when these people spent most of their youth fighting their sibling over toys, room space, food, TV, and of course, their parents’ attention.
Kids who have siblings with disabilities, though, are likely to feel left out as their parents focus their attention to the ones with special needs. After all, the kids with disabilities need utmost parental care and attention. Still, parents wouldn’t want a gap to form between their kids, and there is no reason why these siblings shouldn’t have a normal bond like other siblings do.
Parents can have a heart-to-heart talk with their normal child and explain the situation to them. In a gentle manner, they can make their child understand that, despite the fact that they give him or her less attention than the child with special needs, it doesn’t mean the former is less valued in the family. Parents should also discourage teasing or ridiculing the child with special needs.
Parents should encourage playtime between the siblings so they can form a special bond. A good way to do so is by buying a set of American girl and boy dolls. With these dolls, siblings can learn to share with each other and act out their close relationship with their siblings through the dolls.