How To Cure Eye Contact In Autism?

How To Cure Eye Contact In Autism

For those diagnosed with autism, one of the main developmental challenges is maintaining eye contact. However, we must encourage eye contact from them as it is crucial, since all other social interactions stem from it. Research also emphasizes the importance of eye contact by laying a foundation to ensure attention to the conversation. Thus, eye contact is that form of non-verbal communication which enhances, clarifies, and reinforces the spoken word and deeply impacts social development. It therefore becomes essential to cure eye contact in autism.


This can be done by:

  1. Position yourself at or below the autistic person’s eye level consistently. This way, it would be less strain on the eyes and easier to look at you.
  2. When you talk to an autistic person, always turn to look at them. This will help model appropriate eye contact.
  3. While handing over an object to an autistic person, make sure you position it to your eyes. This way, you could gradually establish eye contact.
  4. When the person looks at you, ensure that you celebrate it and let them know how important it is. This would motivate and encourage them further.
  5. If you are the parent of an autistic person, you can sometimes gently touch your child’s chin as a reminder for them to maintain eye contact. But do not drag their face and be too harsh with your gestures.
  6. Autistic children are more comfortable while they are engaged in a gross motor activity and may give spontaneous eye contact during these activities.

Why The Lack Of Eye Contact?

There are several speculations why autistic people avoid eye contact. While none of them are concrete, they can be listed as:

  • They often lack the usual social motivation that leads other children to make eye contact.
  • They may find it difficult to focus both on spoken language and on another person\’s eyes at the same time.
  • They may not understand that watching another person\’s eyes is more revealing than, for example, watching that person\’s mouth or hands.
  • They can find eye contact to be a very intense and overwhelming sensory experience.


Diagnosing Autism:

Autism is marked by impairments in the use of non-verbal behaviors, such as maintaining eye contact, facial expressions, posture, and other gestures which facilitate social interactions.

While lack of eye contact is a major symptom to diagnose autism, it isn’t enough to suggest autism. Doctors have to rely on a spectrum of characteristic behaviors to make the diagnosis as there are no blood and imaging tests for autism. This list can then be compared to the criteria outlined in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) published by the American Psychiatric Association. Based on these, the doctor can either confirm or deny autism.

Why Is It Hard For People With Autism To Make Eye Contact?

  • Coercion to make eye contact could actually take their attention away from the other things that they are doing, such as processing the information, or trying to make a conversation.
  • It could be overwhelming and mentally draining in certain social situations.
  • It could make them feel extremely vulnerable and self-conscious.
  • It could induce immense anxiety in the individual.


Autism Treatment In Gurgaon:

At Continua Kids, we support specially-abled children to live a life that they deserve. We are a research directed, holistic center, and aim to impart early intervention programmes concerning your child’s overall well-being. By providing guidance and support in your parenting experience, we strive to help your child reach their full potential in all aspects of life by providing autism treatment in Gurgaon.

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