With autism diagnoses on the rise, parents sort through treatment options

When her son, Zane Donahue, started kindergarten two years ago, he began to lock himself in the bathroom and hide behind doors, Raquel Charrois said.

His erratic behavior and difficultly accepting direction led to a diagnosis of autism. Charrois, of Sun Prairie, sought behavioral treatment at UW-Madison’s Waisman Center, which has helped.

Now, if Zane finds the soap out of place, he puts it back, instead of having a meltdown. When Charrois inadvertently banged a lid atop a pot recently, fearing the sound would set him off as it had before, she was surprised to see him remain calm.

“He held up his hands, put his head down, closed his eyes, took a deep breath and said, ‘I know, I know, it’s OK,’ ” she said. “He’s a completely different child now.”

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3rd September 2017
Wisconsin State Journal