The 'Birdhouse For Autism' healthcare app helps parents of autistic children in organizing information such as diet, medications and allergies, as well as in monitoring their daily activities and behavioral patterns.
Autism is a developmental disorder characterized by poor communication, impaired social interaction and repetitive behaviors.
Parents who raise autistic children face a monumental challenge in dealing with this disease on a daily basis.
Often, parents and caregivers get overwhelmed by taking care of the child's needs while sticking to a reasonable schedule.
In terms of planning and organizing, the 'Birdhouse For Autism' healthcare app presents itself as a tool for parents who want to get a better handle on their child's condition.
Functionality of the Autism Healthcare App
- A daily activity check list that parents can use to schedule an appointment, meals or medications.
- A virtual medicine cabinet stores information like medication names, dosage and timing.
- Parents can schedule recurring events and reminders on a calendar for easy reference.
- Events can be recorded in notes categorized as sleep, mood, poop, meltdown or other activities.
- Patterns of behavior can be gleaned from these notes for later discussion with therapists, the names and contact numbers of whom can also be stored.
- All information stored can be shared to therapists, teachers, caregivers and family members.
“In its current version, Birdhouse works best for families who are already in the habit of keeping some type of notes on their child’s day to day progress, or who have something that they are paying special attention to in their child,"
Birdhouse co-developer Ben Chutz told the Parents magazine blog.
"For example, one family was able to get a referral to a neurologist from her child’s pediatrician by tracking her sleep cycles. Another family used Birdhouse with their son’s special education teacher to build a case for the IEP meeting that her son be relocated to a classroom better designed to suit his needs,"
With smartphones becoming ubiquitous in many households, this note-taking healthcare app for parents of autistic children is a simpler alternative to keeping thick binders and notes that get disorganized over time.
"Unlike pencil and paper, everything you record is instantly backed up to the cloud, so you'll never lose a single note again,"
says the healthcare app's website.
"No more switching between half a dozen different applications. Do everything you need to do with Birdhouse, and all your information stays in one place."
Developed by autism parents Dani Gillman and Ben Chutz, 'Birdhouse For Autism' is available to download for iPhone and Android devices, and via the Web. Users can pick either the free or premium version of the healthcare app.
‘Birdhouse For Autism’ can help tech-savvy parents of children with autism in the Middle East, a region believed to have high rates of autism, although official statistics are lacking.
Experts say autism can be caused by genetic mutations and a stressful environment, two factors that strongly come into play in the Middle East.
That is, the practice of marrying relatives may cause autism, and conflicts in the region can trigger mental disorders among young children.
Autism apps have the potential to augment the formal treatments provided by leading autism centers in the region, such as Dubai Autism Center (DAC) and New England Center for Children (NECC)-Abu Dhabi in the UAE, and the Shafallah Center for Children with Special Needs in Doha, Qatar.