FOCUS ABA Therapy Talks

FOCUS Therapy ABA Talks: Hosted by Our ABA Team!

FOCUS Therapy ABA Talks

At FOCUS Therapy, we offer speech, occupational, physical, and ABA therapy. For that last one, "ABA" stands for "Applied Behavioral Analysis." It also sometimes goes by the name, "behavior therapy." It involves the study of behavior and ways it is reinforced. ABA therapy is considered the gold standard for treatment of children with Autism Spectrum Disorder and other conditions that make it difficult to communicate and behave in ways that are expected.

The concept of what ABA therapy is and how it works is often unfamiliar to families who first seek our services on the basis of a physician referral. In an effort to help parents and families better understand ABA and how it works, Dr. Dean Funk, M.D./B.S. Biological Science and the rest of our FOCUS Therapy ABA team have created a series of in-depth videos we hope will better explain it all.

Insight is provided by invaluable members of our FOCUS Therapy ABA team, Ginger Beehler, MS/BCBA and Ignacio Fernandez, BCBA.

Watch the videos below!

FOCUS Therapy

Love What We Do? Write Us an Online Review – For a Chance to Win Back-to-School Supplies!

ATTN FOCUS FAMILIES: Do you love what we do? Write us an online review – and earn a chance to win one of 4(!) back-to-school supply baskets!
Write us a review on Google (https://bit.ly/2VfGt4O) or Facebook (facebook.com/FOCUSTherapy) between now (7/27) and Friday, July 30th to be entered into the drawing. Be sure to let your child’s therapist know you wrote a review so we can double-check that you’re entered! We’ll be announcing the FOUR winners on Facebook Live on Friday, July 30th at 4pm!
Back-to-school supply baskets will include:
  • Composition books
  • Crayons
  • Glue
  • Pencil pouches
  • Pencils
  • Tissue boxes
  • Folders
  • Scissors
  • Germ X
  • Other school supplies that are sure to be on your child’s back-to-school list!
In addition to a chance to win school supplies, you’ll be helping other families in Southwest Florida make informed decisions in finding the best pediatric therapy clinic in Fort Myers to fit their child’s needs. We look forward to hearing from you!
(If you aren’t on Facebook Live for the announcement, no worries – we can call or text you to let you know if you’ve won!)
FOCUS Therapy offers pediatric speech therapy, occupational therapy, ABA therapy and physical therapy in Fort Myers and throughout Southwest Florida. Call (239) 313.5049 or Contact Us online.
telling your child he has autism

My Son Has Autism… When – and How – Should I Tell Him?

Your child has autism. You know it. The rest of the family knows it. His teachers and therapists know it. Maybe even a few of his classmates know it. But when should HE know it? And how should you tell him?

It’s something many of our FOCUS Therapy families grapple with at some point, and answers really depend on the individual. Some parents opt to tell their child when they’re very young, hoping an early understanding of why they struggle more with certain things might make it all less confusing. Other parents wait until their child becomes aware of their differences and starts asking questions. A few parents wait until their child is older with a better ability to fully grasp what their diagnosis means. Our FOCUS speech, occupational and ABA therapists know there isn’t a singular right answer, but we’re here to support our patients and help guide families in these discussions.

Recently, a patient’s mother asked about the best way to handle some of the questions her 7-year-old son on the spectrum was asking. Christie Lawrence, a registered behavior technician (RBT) with our Fort Myers ABA therapy team and herself the mother of a teenager with autism, offered her thoughts.

“I would say the most important part of informing your child of their autism diagnosis is to empower them,” Lawrence said. “Autism can bring many gifts, and it’s so important to teach our children to find and focus on their strengths and build confidence from their success.”

feeding therapy swallowing therapy

What to Expect in a Feeding Therapy Evaluation

Many people think of the role of speech therapists as being limited to speech and language. However, we also play a key role in pediatric feeding therapy evaluation and treatment.

Our Fort Myers speech-language pathologists are experts in oral mechanics – all the way down to the esophagus. We’re specially qualified to support individuals with feeding and swallowing difficulties.

Most people don’t put a ton of thought into the process of feeding and swallowing, but but both actually involve dozens of steps and systems working in conjunction. Feeding is what it takes to get food off the plate and into the mouth. Swallowing involves all the steps it takes to chew and then move food down the throat while protecting the airway leading to the lungs.

A child may have a feeding AND swallowing disorder, or just one or the other. For example, a child on the autism spectrum may have a feeding disorder wherein their food intake is extremely limited due to sensory processing difficulties. They may only need feeding therapy. A child with tracheostomy tubes or dysphagia (difficulty swallowing) or odynophagia (pain while swallowing) may only need swallowing therapy.