Q: Hi Fit In, my autistic child does not respond when his name is called, he did not even look at me, is there a way to improve his eye contact especially during social interaction?
A: Autistic children generally have difficulty in making or maintaining eye contact, some autistic children might even feel anxious to make eye contact. Neurologists suspected that the problem might be over-sensitivity of the parts of the brain responsible for emotional perception. In ABA, the therapists train eye contact by reinforcing the children when they look at the therapist, this can encourage and improve eye contact. Therapists will also praise and reinforce the behaviour with their desired toys or snacks to let the child understand that good behaviour will lead to positive consequences. Eye contact can be trained and improved with ABA therapy, the skill is important especially for the social development of the child, for instance, looking at the speaker provides many social cues for the listeners.