An animation series has been launched by Oxford Heath NHS Foundation Trust for parents and families supporting neurodiverse children and young people.
The five-part series – How do I help? – is full of tips for parents and families to understand the common challenges their children experience and learn strategies to help neurodiverse young people with diagnoses such as autism and attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) to thrive in their everyday lives.
It has been produced by the Oxfordshire Child and Adolescent Mental Health (CAMHS) Oxford Neurodevelopment Conditions (NDC) team at Oxford Health NHS Foundation Trust.
Dr Shah Tarfarosh, the former Specialist Registrar in Psychiatry with the Oxfordshire CAMHS neurodevelopmental conditions team, was behind the project. He said: “Autistic young people and young people with ADHD can find some everyday experiences challenging. Every neurodiverse person is an individual, and therefore like anyone their experiences and challenges are different. However, we know that for many young people and their families things like getting ready for school, mealtimes, day trips and holidays and bedtime are common areas where families face challenges.
“Young people may be reluctant to go to school because it is a difficult environment for them, they may be what others call “picky eaters” because they are put off by certain tastes or textures. It may be that they flourish with a routine and predictability and so going on a trip somewhere they have never been before is a cause for anxiety. And for some neurodiverse children and young people, and particularly those who take some types of medication, it can be hard to get to sleep in the evening. We also know that the challenges neurodiverse people experience in their day-to-day life can have an impact on their overall mental health.
“The experiences portrayed in the animations reflect the real-life experiences of children, young people and families who use the service. Real-life practical strategies are mentioned in an animated story format to help parents of neurodiverse children manage common experiences they face at home.”
Watch the videos on YouTube.
To find out more about Oxfordshire Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service’s neurodiversity pathway team visit https://www.oxfordhealth.nhs.uk/camhs/oxon/ndc.
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Published: 12 October 2021