autism services

Our team works closely with Autistic individuals and their families for assessment and therapy.
We take a neuroaffirmative approach that encourages self-acceptance and self-advocacy. Our intervention is based on the knowledge that when society is more accommodating of neurodivergent individuals, everyone benefits.

What is Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD)?

Autism relates to the differences in an individual’s play, social-emotional presentation, communication, sensory, attention, and learning compared with their neurotypical peers. An autistic individual may relate to others and the environment differently because of the way they process information and sensations.

Autistic individuals may prefer to express their ideas and emotions in non conventional ways. Our job at Thrive Children’s Therapy is to affirm these differences, and work with the individual and their families to build their self-awareness, a positive self-identity, and a means in which they can self-advocate and participate in all aspects of life.

Autistic individuals experience different communication and social-emotional preferences, which may be observed in their interactions with others, including in the following areas:

  • having a back and forth conversation with others;
  • initiating interactions with others;
  • making or maintaining eye contact;
  • sharing interests with others;
  • understanding and developing friendships;
  • reading others’ facial expressions and body language.

Autistic individuals experience differences in their play preferences, and in the way they learn and focus. This might present to an observer as the individual:

  • lining up toys or playing in a repetitive way;
  • being preoccupied with certain objects/toys, or topics/interests;
  • having difficulty coping with changes to routine;
    difficulty transitioning between activities;
  • experiencing sensory sensitivities e.g. sensitivity to noise, touch, texture;
  • engaging in self-soothing mannerisms e.g. flapping, rocking, toe walking;
  • repeating parts or whole parts of speech that they have heard from a conversation or a movie.


In Victoria, an Autism diagnosis can be made for children up to 17 years of age by a multi-disciplinary team that includes (a) paediatrician/developmental paediatrician or child/adolescent psychiatrist plus (b) psychologist plus (c) speech therapist/pathologist.

Thrive Children’s Therapy will work with your child’s psychologist, and paediatrician/developmental paediatrician or child/adolescent psychiatrist to achieve a multi-disciplinary Autism diagnosis.


There’s no One Size Fits All
A diagnostic assessment usually involves:

  • a minimum of two clinical visits to obtain a comprehensive case history from the caregiver, and to observe your child in a play context;
  • formal assessment of the child’s speech, language, and/or pragmatic (social communication) skills;
  • observation of the child in their home and/or educational setting; and
  • case discussions with educators.


Speech Pathology is more than just speech. Autistic individuals may experience distress and overwhelm when partaking in typical social constructs at kindergarten, school, and out in the community.

Early intervention services are crucial for the social-emotional development of autistic individuals. Our sessions are designed to affirm the child in their neurodivergence and in their preferences.

Neurodiversity Affirming Speech pathology intervention leads to a greater understanding of self, a more positive sense of wellbeing, greater self-advocacy, and optimal inclusion in all aspects of life. Therapy can commence before a child is formally diagnosed as Autistic.

Thrive Children’s Therapy works with caregivers and educators to support autistic individuals, from diagnosis to treatment. All treatment plans are designed with family input, around the specific needs of the child.

If you are concerned about your child's development, contact our clinic to discuss your needs.
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