Teaching parents of children with autism how to interact more effectively with their offspring brings the children benefits that linger for years, according to the largest and longest-running study of autism interventions. The training targeted parents with 2–4-year-old children with autism. Six years after the adults completed the year-long course, their children showed better social communication and reduced repetitive behaviours, and fewer were considered to have “severe” autism as compared to a control group, according to results published on 25 October in The Lancet. Child psychiatrist Jonathan Green of the University of Manchester, and an investigator on the study said that even though it is not a cure, yet it does have a sustained and substantial reduction in severity and that’s important in families. Although the therapy benefited communication skills and decreased repetitive behaviours, it did not lessen anxiety.

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