How many ABA therapy sessions should your child receive each week?

| | Reviewed by: Rose Smith
Updated: August 23, 2022 | Published:

Autism-related treatments have come a long way in recent years, and many of them are supported by evidence that they help improve the quality of life for those living with autism. When a child is first diagnosed, their doctor or therapist will likely recommend starting with evidence-based treatments. These treatments are based on research that has shown to be effective in improving the lives of those with autism.

There are many different evidence-based treatments, and each child will respond differently. These treatments aim to help the child learn new skills and improve their communication and social interactions.

ABA Therapy

Such as Applied behavior analysis (ABA). ABA therapy aims to help patients become more successful and independent.

A personalized plan

Your child’s ABA treatment plan will be developed after you meet with the therapist and schedule the first session. This plan will be tailored to fit your child’s specific needs and include a schedule of goals to achieve. The therapist will work with you and your child to create a realistic and achievable plan while keeping your child’s unique personality in mind.

This could indicate that they require ABA therapy for up to 40 hours per week. Even though this treatment plan is intensive, it frequently becomes less intense over time until the child eventually no longer requires therapy. It is important to keep your child in treatment for as long as the ABA therapist recommends for best results.

What is low-functioning autism?

Low-functioning autism, also called severe or profound autism, is a form of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) characterized by significant intellectual and developmental delays. People with low-functioning autism typically have limited communication skills and cannot care for themselves independently. They may also exhibit repetitive behaviors and engage in very limited social interactions.

There is no single cause of low-functioning autism, but it is believed to be caused by a combination of genetic and environmental factors. There is currently no cure for low-functioning autism, but therapies and interventions can help improve the quality of life for those with this disorder.

How do low-functioning and high-functioning autism differ?

Low functioning autism is diagnosed in individuals with severe cognitive and communication deficits, mostly nonverbal. These individuals require constant supervision and support for basic needs such as eating, bathing, and dressing.

High functioning autism is diagnosed in individuals with average or above-average intelligence and some milder symptoms than those with low functioning autism. Although they may have difficulty with social interactions and communication, they can live relatively independently.

Does autism get worse as you age?

Does autism get worse as you age?

There is a lack of scientific evidence to support the idea that autism either worsens or improves with age. Some parents and professionals may anecdotally report that older children and adults with autism seem to have more severe symptoms. In contrast, others claim that older individuals are more likely to be diagnosed due to better awareness and diagnosis techniques. However, it is difficult to say what happens to autism symptoms as people grow older without large-scale studies.

When should you schedule an autism screening for your child?

There is no definitive answer to the question of when to screen for autism. However, many experts recommend screening children as early as possible, especially if there is a family history of autism or the child exhibits certain red flags.

Children who are low-functioning and have severe symptoms may be screened at 18 months old or younger. High-functioning children may not be screened until 3 or 4 since their symptoms may not be as easily noticed.

No matter what type of autism your child has, getting them screened as soon as possible is important. The earlier autism is detected, the sooner your child can start receiving treatment that can help improve their quality of life.


In the current day and age, more and more families are looking for therapies to help their children. One such therapy is ABA or Applied Behavior Analysis. This type of therapy effectively treats various issues, including autism spectrum disorder (ASD). However, not all children receiving ABA require the same hours per week. It is often recommended that children receive anywhere from 1-4 hours per week of ABA therapy.


About Amy Smith

Amy, an award-winning journalist with a Master's in Journalism from Columbia University, has excelled for over twelve years, specializing in parenting, pregnancy, nursing, fashion, and health.

Her acclaimed blog, AmyandRose, demonstrates profound expertise shaped by her journey from pregnancy to nurturing a teenager and a toddler. Recognized by several parenting awards, Amy's work has been featured in top-tier health and lifestyle magazines, underscoring her authority in these fields.

Her contributions, grounded in evidence-based research and personal experience, provide invaluable, credible insights for parents navigating the complexities of modern child-rearing and personal well-being.

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