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(p. 235) Emotion Regulation in Autism Spectrum Disorder 

(p. 235) Emotion Regulation in Autism Spectrum Disorder
(p. 235) Emotion Regulation in Autism Spectrum Disorder

Jonathan A. Weiss

, Priscilla Burnham Riosa

, Carla A. Mazefsky

, and Renae Beaumont

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date: 28 March 2020

Chapter 12 discusses childhood and adolescent autism spectrum disorder (ASD), a pervasive neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by deficits in social communication, and by restricted, repetitive patterns of behavior, interests, or activities. Emotion regulation difficulty, particularly understanding emotion, is common in ASD, as is the use of maladaptive regulatory strategies (i.e., avoidance, expressive suppression). In terms of treatment, robust empirical evidence supports using mindfulness and cognitive behavioral approaches in treating anxiety, a frequent outcome of emotion dysregulation in youth ASD. In addition, two psychopharmacologic medications, risperidone and ariprazole, have well-established evidence supporting their utility in this population. Understanding the underlying dynamics of emotion regulation through ASD from a developmental perspective, whilst considering the stressors unique to this population, is imperative in order to improve treatment outcomes and optimize individualized skill development. The chapter concludes with a description of a novel intervention designed to specifically address emotion regulation difficulties in children with ASD.

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