Treatment Plan for an Adolescent with Autism

Health-Related And Substance Use Disorders. Reflect on your experience creating a treatment plan for a toddler, school-aged child, or adolescent with autism or an intellectual disability.

Describe the clinical situation in detail. (Who was it, when did it happen, what happened, what caused it to happen, where did it happen, how did it happen). What feelings, prejudices, and biases did you experience during your clinical experience?
How did you manage your anxieties, feelings, prejudices, and biases?
What assumptions did you make about people with mental illness?
What awareness did you develop during your clinical experience?
Describe how you changed because of your clinical experience?
Describe how this clinical situation will impact your advanced nursing practice?
Use DIEP Model as a guide
Title: Treatment Plan for an Adolescent with Autism

Clinical Situation:
During my clinical experience as a healthcare professional, I had the opportunity to create a treatment plan for a 14-year-old adolescent with autism. This particular case occurred in a specialized autism clinic, where the patient, whom I will refer to as Alex, had been attending regular therapy sessions for the past few years. Alex’s parents sought further assistance to address his challenging behaviors and improve his overall functioning.

Alex’s autism diagnosis was established during early childhood due to his communication difficulties, restricted interests, and repetitive behaviors. However, his parents noticed an escalation in his behavioral challenges in recent months, which prompted them to seek additional support.

During the initial assessment, it was discovered that Alex’s challenging behaviors were impeding his ability to engage in daily activities, social interactions, and learning opportunities. His aggression towards others, self-injurious behaviors, and difficulties with emotional regulation were causing significant distress to both Alex and his family.

Feelings, Prejudices, and Biases:
While working with Alex and his family, I encountered a range of emotions, prejudices, and biases that I needed to acknowledge and manage. Initially, I felt a sense of anxiety and uncertainty due to the severity of Alex’s behavioral challenges. There was a part of me that questioned whether I would be able to make a meaningful impact on his life.

Furthermore, I realized that I held certain biases and assumptions about individuals with autism. I found myself assuming that individuals on the autism spectrum were inherently less capable of emotional connection or social integration. These biases challenged my ability to fully understand and empathize with Alex’s experiences and needs.

Managing Anxieties, Feelings, Prejudices, and Biases:
To manage my anxieties and address my biases, I actively sought supervision and consultation from experienced professionals in the field of autism treatment. Engaging in reflective practice and self-assessment helped me become aware of my biases and prejudices, enabling me to challenge and replace them with evidence-based knowledge and understanding.

Additionally, I cultivated a mindset of continuous learning and remained open to the perspectives and insights of Alex’s parents, other professionals, and the autistic community. This allowed me to recognize the individual strengths and unique abilities of individuals on the autism spectrum and appreciate the potential for growth and progress.

Assumptions Made about People with Mental Illness:
Before this clinical experience, I held assumptions that individuals with mental illness, including autism, were limited in their capacity for personal growth and development. I had mistakenly believed that their challenges were insurmountable and that their potential for improvement was restricted.

Awareness Developed during Clinical Experience:
Through this clinical experience, I developed a profound awareness of the diversity and individuality within the autism community. I realized that each person on the spectrum has unique strengths, abilities, and potential for growth. I became more sensitive to the fact that autism is a neurodevelopmental condition and not a personal flaw or deficit.

Additionally, I gained a deeper understanding of the impact that environmental factors, such as family dynamics, community support, and access to appropriate interventions, can have on an individual’s well-being and development. I recognized the need for a holistic and person-centered approach to autism treatment that considers the individual’s strengths, preferences, and challenges.

Personal Changes:
This clinical experience profoundly changed my perspective as a healthcare professional. I learned to approach individuals with autism with a sense of curiosity, respect, and openness, recognizing their unique strengths and abilities. I now appreciate the importance of creating a safe and inclusive environment that promotes acceptance and supports the growth and development of individuals with autism.

Impact on Advanced Nursing Practice:
This clinical situation will significantly impact my advanced nursing practice. Moving forward, I will incorporate a more person-centered approach in my interactions with individuals with autism and intellectual disabilities. I will prioritize creating therapeutic relationships

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