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No More Meltdowns – Positive strategies for managing and preventing out-of-control behavior by Dr. Jed Baker: A Book Review

Written on November 21, 2010 by Gina in AutismBooksEpilepsy/LKSSensory Processing DisorderSpecial Parents,Therapies
How many behavioral therapies have we tried? How many therapists have we consulted, asked to observe our families, give us their opinions, techniques and chores while they promise that this will be the answer? Consider the number and variety of books we’ve read, audio listened to, online sites scoured looking for answers that sounded…right. Think of the reward charts, PECS schedules, rules and ‘regulations’ we’ve placed in our homes hoping to thwart the meltdowns that in the end are inevitable, leaving us to feel a failure and our children to feel unsafe, uncomfortable, confused and angry. What therapists have we found that are grounded in reality, sensible in their conclusions, reasonable in their processes? Who has been willing to say, “Since we cannot control everything, we will have meltdowns?” I counted none. Until I listened to Jed Baker, Ph.D.

The first time I heard Dr. Baker speak was at an Autism and Asperger’s SuperConference hosted by Future Horizons in Denver, Colorado. Skeptical as many parents of special needs children can be, educated in academia, life and an expert of all that can go wrong in my own home, I heard for the first time a speaker I could not ‘pick apart’. His words rang true, insight was truly insight, reality and logic ran through each ‘real-life’ example he gave (and that I could easily see happening with my family). Immediately after that conference, I sprang to my husband with excitement over the words I heard, the techniques I listened to, and the understanding that therapist (and parents) has that finally made sense. I wanted to share it with him…and I can.

Dr. Baker’s book, “No More Meltdowns, Positive strategies for managing and preventing out-of-control behavior” is nothing short of an invaluable resource for helping you manage your home, and your child to negotiate his world in a positive manner. “No More Meltdowns” teaches from experiences that run the line of mistake to understanding to success, explaining along the way the how’s and why’s that solidify ‘the answer’ purely because it all makes sense. In an easy 4-step model, Dr. Baker teaches parents how to manage (our own) emotions, relax or de-escalate a meltdown, understand why the meltdown took place, and create a preventative plan by finding, changing and helping to manage triggers.

In this resource, Dr. Baker goes on to discusses the importance of developing trust, preventing rather than reacting, and shows that “Meltdowns are escalations of negative emotional reactions.” He reviews areas such as when to avoid power struggles and the necessity of accepting and appreciating our children. Finally, Dr. Baker rounds out this resource with Quick Reference Guides (and explanations) for typical “meltdown” situations such as: sleep, attention jealousy, bullying, the ending of an activity, and the all dreaded ‘NO’.

What the Experts say about No More Meltdowns:

“Jed Baker, in this excellent book, gives us the tools to deal with and prevent out-of-control behavior. Wisely, he leads us grown-ups to understand how to change our own behavior in order to help our children change theirs.” – Carol Kranowitz, MA, Author of The Out-of-Sync Child and The Goodenoughs Get in Sync.

About The Author:

Having earned his MA and Ph.D. in clinical psychology from the University of Albany, Dr. Jed Baker is a behavioral consultant for several New Jersey school districts where, nearly two decades ago, he organized a group to help children with social communication problems. That group expanded and ultimately became the Social Skills Training Project under Dr. Baker’s directorship. Dr. Baker also lectures all over the world on social skills training. His work has been featured on ABC News andNightline.

No More Meltdowns, Positive strategies for managing and preventing out-of-control behavior” can be found at Future HorizonsBarnes & NobelBorders and Amazon Book Stores.

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