Clare Education Centre is to host a webinar this Thursday April 29th for Parents, SNAs and teachers focusing on Autism and Anxiety.
The webinar will be hosted by Dr Susan Crawford PHD. Susan lectured on autism in UCC until 2019 when she went into consultancy full time. In the last year she has started a webinar series being run in education centres across the country.
Speaking to The Clare Echo earlier this week she outlined what she will be covering in the upcoming webinar, “We’ll be looking at what anxiety is, what’s happening in the brain, why it arises and then we’ll go through the whole piece around anxiety and autism and what we know about the different types of anxiety disorders associated with autism, looking at triggers and what are kind of some key points people face to try and manage anxiety”.
Susan believes the pandemic has worsened anxiety among those with autism. “Anxiety certainly has been exacerbated with Covid for autistic children and adults. We know that 40% of young kids on the spectrum have at least one other anxiety disorder. An autistic person can get anxious if their routine changes, if their environment changes, if they’re unhappy in some way and they can’t express in terms of communication and so I suppose then when we think of what Covid brought in terms of changing environments, changing the way we do things, wearing the mask, all of those and for somebody trying to interpret that that can create its own anxiety” she said.
Susan’s specific expertise is in movement impairment among autistic people and she has been a long time advocate for the importance of movement for those on the spectrum. In 2019, the Inagh native and her 25 year old son Tomás who is severely autistic ran over 3,000 km along the Wild Atlantic Way for Autism Active Autism Aware Agenda. “I am really passionate for driving the agenda for movement for people who are autistic. We know it’s good for everyone but it really opens up other avenues for autistic children and adults and my own research and the books I’ve written over the years have been all about that because this a whole new avenue which needs to be developed.”
The Clare Education Centre webinar will be on over Zoom at 3.30pm this Thursday. For more information on this webinar visit www.clareed.ie . To learn more about Susan and her other upcoming webinars visit www.getautismactive.com.