Relationship Development Intervention for an Autistic Child

Relationship development intervention (RDI) is a family-oriented aversion therapy which identifies the basic symptoms of autism. The main focus of this is to build up interpersonal and emotional skills. In most of the cases, during RDI programs, parents are trained as the fundamental therapist. RDI assists the autistic child in building intimate relationships by reinforcing elements of social connections. RDI develops an idea that ‘dynamic intelligence’ is essential to enhance the quality of life for people with autism. The purpose of dynamic intelligence includes:

  • Subsisting the change
  • Understanding different perceptions
  • Combining information from various resources

Objectives of RDI 

At times, RDI proves to be more effective when combined with other autism treatments or medications. RDI increases motivation levels and also improves teaching skills. Parents, teachers and guardians use the following objectives of RDI in a child’s daily life: 

  • Foresight and hindsight: the capability to ponder previous experiences and foresee the future based on previous experiences
  • Social coordination: the capability to perceive and control behavior in order to successfully take part in social relationships
  • Flexible approach: the ability to modify and make changes in plans as per circumstances
  • Declarative language: to use nonverbal communication to show curiosity, share viewpoints and invite others to communicate
  • Emotional referencing: the ability to learn through the individual psychological experiences of a person


How to Implement RDI

RDI consultants will start this autism therapy by performing an assessment in order to check how the child interacts with parents and teachers. The consultant will then construct a teaching plan and objectives based upon the development and ability of a child.  The main objective of this process is to improve brain function. The therapist applies step by step developmental approaches to daily life situations. Initially, parents will restrict the use of spoken language and their main focus will be on nonverbal communication. As the performance of the child will improve, the objectives and teaching plan will also gradually change to meet the needs of the child. Moreover, the child will be able to start spending time with an individual having similar social and emotional skills. This is termed as ‘dyad’ – which means having two children. Step by step, more children will start joining the group. Now they will interact and play with the advice of their parents and therapists. This way, these children will start developing relationships with each other in different contexts.

How are RDI Programs Effective?

The principles of RDI are mostly used by parents and therapists on a daily basis. They make choices depending on the nature of autistic child. Most of the families spend a couple of hours a week using RDI strategies. In order to make RDI programs more effective. parents should learn through training seminars, books and other materials. Detailed therapy sessions are provided by Small Steps Big Dreams in Dubai, UAE to treat the difficulties faced by a child by way of supporting autism treatment in UAE.

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