The Earlier, the Better: Early Childhood Intervention

During early childhood, one’s brain is more plastic (meaning more capable of change and adapting); this makes therapy highly effective during these years because the therapist can identify and address developmental delays before they grow into more severe difficulties.

Early childhood services, which include working on language, play, social, and adaptive skills, are essential not only for the child but also for the parent. 

During these services, parents are provided with tools to help increase their child’s development. The core of early childhood services is based on positive parenting and interaction which can also decrease aggressive and antisocial behavior. 

Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) services provided by Behavior Trend incorporate early child development practices into the child’s ABA goals and procedures. Behavior Trend’s Board Certified Behavior Analysts (BCBA) and Behavior Technicians, who come from backgrounds in special education and early childhood, are mindful of the delicate processes involved when developing a meaningful ABA program for your toddler or young child.  

 In addition, Behavior Trend also provides Early Childhood Services for birth to 3 years of age provided through private pay. These services include Sleep Training, Potty Training, and Child Development. These services are delivered by higher level staff such as credentialed special education teachers and early childhood educators. .  

Recognize These Signs

  • Lack of mobility
  • Repetitive motions
  • Not following simple instructions
  • Not responding to their name
  • Regressing or loss of language
  • Repeating phrases from TV shows
  • Odd interests beyond their age level (i.e. a 2-year old naming all the U.S. Presidents)
  • Not able to feed themselves using their hands and/or spoon/fork
  • Lining up toys
  • Not sharing enjoyment/interest with others

As Bill Gates said, “The first five years have so much to do with how the next 80 turn out”. 

Give us a call and let’s talk through how we can make the first 5 years count for your child.  

Preparations & Predictability During The Holidays

Holidays are full of joy, excitement, energy, and laughter with family and friends.. It can also be full of uncertainty, anxiety, stress, and sensory overload for a person on the spectrum.  During the Holidays, routines become anything but predictable. There are new people, sounds, smells, things in the house, and even significant changes to everyone’s basic self-care routines. Here are some helpful tips and tricks to get you through this time of the year.

Pick and choose:

Children on the spectrum can handle some changes to their routine, but at times it can become difficult overcome a complete disruption to their routine and schedule.  You know your child the best so, remember to pick and choose the kinds of changes that they can handle. Have to leave the party a little early? No worries! Do what is best for your child’s needs. .

Practice and run through social scenarios:

Include a visual or a step-by-step guide to review what the expectations will be for the holidays. Discuss and practice the expectation and what to do when they start to feel anxious or stressed. 

Come early:

Talk with the host of the party ahead of time! Take time with your child to go early to the event and walk around, so they are exposed to the new or changed environment. As you walk around talk about all the differences and what they are going to need to expect when the party starts. You can form a plan with your child and find a safe place to escape to when they need a break during the party. 

Make a plan:

Here is one idea. Put together a calm down/activity backpack (filling the backpack with toys, coloring activities, comfort items, headphones, I-pad, a blanket to sit on, etc.). Consider your child’s likes and comfort toys..  You can also get your child involved by having them help you select toys and items for their activity backpack. Talk to your child about what the backpack is for and how he/she can use it during the party. Then when you arrive at the party, go with your child to find a safe location for Storage.

Communicating with family and friends:

Communicate with your friends and family that your child might need a break from the event. Let them know what it may look like for your child when they need a break.. 

Keep it predictable:

Keeping it predictable is essential during this time of the year. If you have a child with a visual schedule, keep using a visual schedule throughout your day but adapt it for the holidays. You can even put visuals on your home calendar, such as putting a picture of the hosts face on the date of the event.

Keep the base of your routine at least somewhat predictable, such as therapies, bedtime, downtime, eating, and playing. You can help your child enjoy this annual experience with friends and family by prepping and preparing your child for this time of the year.

Have a wonderful, predictable, and safe Holiday season!

From all of us here at 

Behavior Trend!

How to Navigate Insurance to Obtain Services for Your Child

The world of insurance is a tricky maze to figure out alone. Don’t do this on your own! Let us help!

Step 1 Documented Diagnosis

Receive a written diagnosis from a medical (M.D. or D.O.) or licensed psychologist (PsyD., Ph.D.). Some insurers will only want a prescription from your pediatrician and will not request a full diagnostic report. A school report or IEP does NOT count as a diagnostic report. 

Step 2 Understand Your Policy

You can call the benefits department from your insurance provider (number is located behind your insurance card) and ask if ABA Is a covered treatment. Some insurance plans do not cover ABA and some do. During this time, you can also ask about your co-pays and deductibles. If your insurance does not cover ABA, you can reach out to your local Regional Center for assistance for services.  However, at Behavior Trend, we can do this step for you to verify your benefits and eligibility for ABA services. 

Step 3 Document and stay organized

Stay on top of all the documentation you gather during steps 1 and 2 (any reports, assessments, bills, explanation of benefits (EOBs), and communicate with your insurer). They will come in handy!

Step 4 Pick your ABA Provider Carefully!

When looking for providers, it is essential not to go with the first provider suggested to you but to find one that fits you and your family. “It takes a village”.  Pick a provider who has developed relationships with other service providers such as speech therapists, clinical psychologist, and advocates and who has a successful working relationship with insurers. We partner with many local and national resources and would be happy to make referrals when necessary. 

Ensure that a Board-Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA) is leading your ABA programming (writing goals), not a non-certified staff. The BCBA should be your main contact. 

Step 5 State-specific laws

It is essential to know that every state does not adhere to the same insurance laws regarding ABA services. It is vital to know your rights!  In California, ABA services was a requirement to be covered through insurance for children with autism through S.B. 946.

Step 6 Ready to start this Maze?

Contact us and we will have you speak to our insurance experts! We will take all the information you have gathered from step 1-5 and help you with the process of starting ABA services using your insurance policy! Don’t do this on your own! Let us help.

It can be scary and possibly even overwhelming, looking at all the paperwork and information you have gathered, but you are not alone. We will help guide and coach you through every twist and turn of the insurance maze.

We provide services in Los Angeles County, Santa Barbara County, and San Luis Obispo County. 

Some Helpful links:

Parent Training: An Essential Component to ABA

Parent Training: An Essential Component to ABA:
You – the parent – are your child’s first and forever teacher. As behavior therapists and
analysts we are only in your child’s life for a short period of time. Your child will make
enormous gains during ABA services, but a vital component to not only maintaining but
exceeding those gains beyond the conclusion of services is one thing: Parent Training.
During Behavior Trend’s Parent Training sessions, you and the clinical team will work
together to build individualized parent training goals to meet the needs of your child
and your family. We want parent training to be meaningful to you. We also want to
empower you by providing you with knowledge about ABA, autism, developmental
delays, and other parts of treatments.
Fundamental topics we cover during our Parent Training:
 How to determine why your child is engaging in certain problematic behaviors
 How to have your child engage in things you would like them to do (potty
training, doing chores, etc.)
 How to teach your child language, play, social, and adaptive skills
 How to teach your child to be independent
What does a Parent Training session look like?

  1. Check-in: We want to see how you and your family are doing and how sessions
    are moving along.
  2. Child’s Goals: We review the current goals and progress on your child’s goals. We
    discuss the importance of the goals and where we see the goals moving towards.
  3. Parent-Training Goals: This is where we discuss the specific goals we believe will
    make a big difference in your child’s life now and for years to come.
    a. Review: We will review the importance of the goal we are teaching you.
    b. Modeling: We will show you exactly how to implement the goal with your
    c. Feedback: We will provide you with feedback on how well you did or how
    you can improve.
    d. Materials: We will provide you with or recommend materials that will help
    you achieve these goals like token systems or reminders on your fridge!
    e. Problem-Solve: We will troubleshoot together and come up with plans
    that will work with you and your family.
  4. Summarize: We will summarize our parent training session and develop a goal for
    the next session.

We are here to help support you and your child to build independence, confidence, and
growth using ABA.
If you would like more information about any of your programs, please reach out to us
at or call our offices 818.369.4440.
We are happy to help support you through this journey!