There are various forms of therapy available for children with autism, each designed to help them communicate and find coping mechanisms. This article will cover one of the most prominent options, autism play therapy, to help you find a better way to assist your child with autism.

baby playing

What Is Play Therapy?

Autism play therapy is a way for children to act out their feelings in otherwise inaccessible ways. It allows them to access unique coping mechanisms, expressing themselves in a manner that helps them feel comfortable.


Play therapy is a tool to help a child with autism fully become themselves without engaging in unwanted and potentially injurious behavior. It helps them make the right choices for their self-expression, rather than attempting to fit inside an uncomfortable box.


There are many forms of therapy for children with autism. Why would a person with autism need to see a play therapist?

Why Would a Person With Autism Need to See a Play Therapist?

A child with autism may need to see a play therapist due to the nature of the disability. Autism is mostly a social-communication disorder and impacts the way they can relate to other individuals.


The child with autism can’t connect with them in the traditional ways. They might have an intense focus on objects or become self-absorbed.


A play therapist will help them break free from these uncomfortable restraints. They will shift away from the impacts of autism and partake in real interaction with others.


If a therapist helps a child with autism use play therapy correctly, it will benefit them tremendously. They may look deeper into their feelings, better understand their environments, and have a quality relationship with their peers, parents, and siblings.


Let’s say you take your child with autism to a play therapist. What will the therapist do?


What a Play Therapist Does

A quality play therapist is engaging and interactive. They will physically climb down on the floor and engage with them, using play to connect with them on a different level. They are engaged with their patients.


One common form of play therapy is to set out a layer of toys. Eventually, the child will find one they enjoy and decide what they want to do with it.


Once they start playing with the toy, the therapist will attempt to interact with their toy to get a response from them, verbally or nonverbally. They want to begin a relationship.


Sometimes, a child with autism won’t respond. If this occurs, the therapist might attempt something with more interest or energy to increase engagement opportunities.


Common examples include toys that vibrate, move, or make funny sounds. Bubbles are another excellent option because they move and offer unique opportunities for children with autism to interact.

There are many skills therapists work into play therapy. They will work on sharing and turn-taking for reciprocal skills, pretending abilities for imaginative abilities, and abstract thinking abilities to make it easier for children with autism to enjoy interactions.


Therapists use play therapy to accomplish specific goals for their patients. What are the benefits of play therapy? What good things will children with autism experience through this form of assistance?

Benefits of Play Therapy

Play therapy is more than a playtime session with a therapist. There are many things a child with autism will gather over time.


A child with autism may experience some of the following benefits if they take part in a proper session of play therapy. They will gain the ability to:


  •       Self-express
  •       Understand themselves better
  •       Self-actualize
  •       Self-efficacy
  •       Relive their feelings of boredom and stress
  •       Create connections with themselves and others
  •       Stimulate their exploration abilities and creative thinking
  •       Regulate their emotions with ease
  •       Improve social skills
  •       Boost their ego


There are many benefits to exploring a successful play therapy session.


The longer a therapist works with a child, the more likely they are to enjoy these good things. It will help them access a new side of their personality.


There are many benefits play therapy will provide for children with autism. If you bring your child to a session, how long can you expect it to take? What is the typical timeline of a play therapy experience?

child playing

How Long Does Play Therapy Take?

Each play therapy session will differ based on what goes on in the session and the personality of the therapist. You can’t anticipate a specific length of time, but most sessions are 30 to 50 minutes on average. Most sessions occur weekly to hold consistency.


It takes about 20 minutes a week of play therapy to help with the issues of a child with autism. More may be better for some children, but for others, 20 minutes a week might be enough.


Sessions aren’t too long. Should your family come to your play therapy experience?

How May My Family Be Involved in Play Therapy?

Although families love their children with autism, there are complex complications in many families. Children with autism may develop issues as they attempt to communicate and fail to do so with their loved ones. Eventually, there may be a rift in the family.


A family might become distressed if their child becomes violent and disruptive. They may struggle to find a solution for their kid.


The best way for these families to heal is to work together to solve their troubles. In most cases, it’s ideal for the entire family.


Typically, a play therapist will get the family involved. They will decide what to do in the sessions, including when adding a family member is appropriate. They will use some or all people as they see fit.


Play therapy is excellent for children with autism. It’s a gate to a new world for them.



Play therapy is an excellent way to help your child with autism. It’s a way to access coping mechanisms and help them communicate their true selves in ways they never were able to before. If your loved one needs help communicating and expressing themselves, try play therapy. It’s a doorway to a new world.



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