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Child Wandering Tips & Tricks For Parents

by Annette on January 27, 2014

Wandering is the tendency for an individual to try to leave the safety of a responsible person’s care or a safe area, which can result in potential harm or injury.  This might include running off from adults at school or in the community, leaving the classroom without permission, or leaving the house when the family is not looking.

This behavior is considered common and short-lived in toddlers, but it may persist or re-emerge in children and adults with autism.  Children with autism have challenges with social and communication skills and safety awareness. This makes wandering a potentially dangerous behavior.

Wandering may also be referred to as Elopement; Bolting; Fleeing; Running.

  • Nearly half of children with autism engage in wandering behavior
  • Wandering occurs across all settings, under every type of adult supervision
  • Increased risks are associated with autism severity
  • Half of families report they have never received advice or guidance about wandering from a professional
  • Accidental drowning accounts for approximately 90% of lethal outcomes

Last year there has 22 deaths related to autistic children and wandering or elopement behaviors.

  • A 12-year-old boy struck and killed by a car on a busy interstate, after he wandered away from his Houston home at night.
  • A 4-year-old boy who drowned in a nearby quarry after wandering away from his Franklin, Ohio, home in late September.
  • A 3-year-old boy whose body was found in a lake near his Smith County, Texas, home in mid-September, a day after he was reported missing.

Nearly half of children with ASD were reported to engage in elopement behavior, with a substantial number at risk for bodily harm. These results highlight the urgent need to develop interventions to reduce the risk of elopement, to support families coping with this issue, and to train child care professionals, educators, and first responders who are often involved when elopements occur.

Dangers associated with elopement include: Drowning; Exposure; Dehydration; Hypothermia; Traffic Injuries; Falls; Physical Restraint; Encounters with strangers; Encounters with law enforcement.

From AWAARE here are 6 considerations for your home and your child’s safety:

1. Secure Your Home
Consider contacting a professional locksmith, security company or home improvement professional to promote safety and prevention in your home. You may find it is necessary to prevent your loved one from slipping away unnoticed by installing secure dead bolt locks that require keys on both sides, a home security alarm system, inexpensive battery-operated alarms on doors, placing hook and eye locks on all doors above your child’s reach, fencing your yard, adhering printable STOP SIGNS to doors, windows and other exits, etc.

2. Consider a Tracking Device
Check with local law enforcement for Project Lifesaver or LoJak SafetyNet services. These tracking devices are worn on the wrist or ankle and locate the individual through radio frequency. Various GPS tracking systems are also available.

3. Consider an ID Bracelet
Medical ID bracelets will include your name, telephone number and other important information. They may also state that your child has autism and is non-verbal if applicable. If your child will not wear a bracelet or necklace, consider a temporary tattoo with your contact information.

4. Teach Your Child to Swim
Swimming lessons for children with special needs are available at many YMCA locations. The final lesson should be with clothes on. Remember: teaching your child how to swim does not mean your child is safe in water. If you own a pool, fence it and if neighbors have pools, let them know of these safety precautions and your child’s tendency to wander. Remove all toys or items of interest from the pool when not in use.

5. Alert Your Neighbors
It is recommended that caregivers plan a brief visit with neighbors to introduce their loved ones or provide a photograph. Knowing your neighbors can help reduce the risks associated with wandering.

6. Alert First Responders
Providing first responders with key information before an incident occurs may improve response. Informational handouts should include all pertinent information and be copied and carried with caregivers at all times. Circulate the handout to family, neighbors, friends and co-workers, as well as first responders.


Do You Love Someone With Autism?

by Admin on January 16, 2014

If you’re here then the likelihood is you DO love someone with Autism and we do as well. Here at Autism United, we’ve developed a community over the years of others from caretakers, parents teachers, to individuals on the spectrum themselves. Our community has grown to become this beautiful, supportive community and we want to continue to grow and continue to raise awareness and understanding.

We’ve always talked about having apparel that we could use to help raise awareness but also to help give back at the local level to charities working in the trenches to support individuals. Now we can happily say we reached our goal and have a Limited Edition Autism United tee available!

“I Love Someone with Autism”

Limited Edition Autism United tee



Oh ya we do! We love many with Autism. We love the supporters of Autism. We love all of you. For a LIMITED TIME ONLY you have the chance to get yourself this Limited Edition AutismUnited tee or hoodie, or whatever style you’d like that we’ve made available.

For every sale we make we will be donating 25% of proceeds to a local non profit charity our community will nominate.

Only Available for Short Time!

We are limiting the length of time these shirts are available as our first product for sale here at Autism United. Why? Because we have a lot of ideas up our sleeves. Lots!

How to Order? 

Ordering is very simple. Here is what you’ll do:

  1. Go to http://teespring.com/autismlovesomeone
  2. Select shirt style
  3. Select quantity
  4. Select shirt size
  5. Add another style if you’d like other styles or sizes
  6. Check out now either with Paypal or using available payment methods

When we reach a total of 100 shirts sold, we will then begin shipping out. We do however have to reach this goal before time runs out or we will not send out the shirts (and you won’t be charged).

Why Set a Goal? 

We set a goal for ourselves to help make it exciting. We know that it will take work from our fans as well as ourselves. However we truly believe in the greater good of helping local charities in need but also promoting such an amazing message. I LOVE SOMEONE WITH AUTISM. There is no greater message then being proud of someone you love and are proud of. We get to promote this while generating a substantial donation that will be given in such an exciting way. Fan Nominated!!

Now do you love someone with Autism? Wear it proud and let the world know, and buy one of our Limited Edition Autism United tees!


Susan Boyle Diagnosed with Asperger Syndrome

January 15, 2014

Susan Boyle is part of autism’s ‘invisible generation’ By Steven Brocklehurst BBC Scotland news website Scottish singer Susan Boyle has been diagnosed with Asperger Syndrome, a form of autism. She is one of thousands of people who have the condition but were not diagnosed earlier in life. The National Autistic Society (NAS) Scotland recently warned [...]

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Social Aspects of Sexuality – Helping Our Spectrum Children Understand

January 9, 2014

Like it or not, if you have a child, sexuality and sexual issues are things you’re going to deal with eventually, either directly (and positively), or indirectly (and most likely negatively) from the imprints made on your child by other people or sources. If your child has autism, this blissful topic gets even more interesting, [...]

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Autismiles – The Story of Courtney Alexandra Astore

January 6, 2014

Growing up, I experienced various challenges that I was told would make me a stronger person in the end. I never thought I was different than anyone else, and that my feelings and reactions happen to everyone. From the itchy tag on my shirt to the touch of a person’s hand on my shoulder, I [...]

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Treating Autism Symptoms With Parasitic Worms

December 26, 2013

Adults with autism who were intentionally infected with a parasitic intestinal worm experienced an improvement in their behavior, researchers say. After swallowing whipworm eggs for 12 weeks, people with autism became more adaptable and less likely to engage in repetitive actions, said study lead author Dr. Eric Hollander, director of the Autism and Obsessive Compulsive [...]

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Sensory Overload For The Holidays – Prevention Tips

December 19, 2013

The sights and sounds of the holidays can be exciting but also overwhelming; especially for a child with sensory issues.  Awareness of these sensitivities is the key to preventing your child’s meltdowns.  People with sensory issues have a super-sensitive central nervous system (CNS).  Clothing tags, sock seams, scratchy fabrics, loud noises, crowds, buzzing florescent lights, [...]

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Increased Risk Of Autism

November 19, 2013

Women who become pregnant within a year after giving birth could be putting their next child at increased risk of autism, researchers’ say, published in the respected medical journal Pediatrics (study was done back in 2011) , looked at the incidence of autism among 663,000 second-born children in California born between 1992 and 2002. Such babies are three [...]

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First American Child Ever Diagnosed With Autism

October 28, 2013

The year was 1938, and Donald T. would later become the first American child ever diagnosed with autism. For decades afterward, it was believed that the condition was rare. Times have certainly changed. Today, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, roughly 1 in 88 children are diagnosed with autism spectrum disorders, or ASDs, and [...]

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Young Adults With Autism – What Does Their Future Hold

October 7, 2013

Of course we can’t predict what the future holds for any of us, but a young adult with autism is already getting the red light from employers, housing, and even further education.  Young adults with autism are less likely to find employment or live independently than young adults with other kinds of disabilities. With roughly [...]

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