Let’s Talk About It: Social Communication Disorder


Social communication disorder “SCD” affects adolescents both inside and outside the classroom. SCD can make it extremely difficult for adolescents to navigate social situations on a daily basis. Learning the basic rules of conversation is a much more extensive and challenging process. Some things that feel natural or like common knowledge to us can be more foreign to those struggling with SCD. These things can include how to start a conversation, how to phrase a question, and how to know when a conversation is over. In order to provide your child with the help they need, it’s important that you grasp a full understanding of how this disorder impacts your child’s functional skills.

Academic Skills:  SCD can cause a delay in school progress. The disorder can make it difficult to infer and recognize social subtleties, which hinders the development of reading and writing skills. There are academic sources and professionals you can seek out to get your child the help they need. Consider speech therapy and seek out special education services offered by your child’s school. These options can be critical in helping your child reach their fullest potential and staying on track in school.

Social Skills: Given that SCD impacts one’s ability to socially navigate themselves, making or maintaining friendships can be very difficult. Healthy relationships are important for everyone. You should seek professional help in teaching your child how to effectively interact with others and also implement helpful practices at home.

What Can You Do?

We cannot stress enough the importance of professional intervention when your child is diagnosed with SCD. Professionals will be able to identify what course of action will be most beneficial for your child. They will help guide them towards a sustainable and successful social life. It is NOT reasonable to assume your child will eventually pick up on proper interactive skills. They need a higher level of guidance to develop these skills. While seeking professional help is number one on the list of ways you can best help them, here are some other things you can do at home to hone in on these skills:

Practice makes perfect. Make sure you are fostering normal conversation skills at home. Taking turns speaking and cueing when conversations are over are great ways to help your child read these signals outside of the home.

Read and reflect. Books and stories offer opportunities to learn, develop, and reflect. Encourage your child to read and discuss the story and characters with them. Try extending this to real-life situations, privately discussing what a friend or sibling might be feeling and why.

What’s next? Have your child try to predict what will happen next in a story. Help him locate the clues. Or work backward. Once an event happens, go back and figure out the clues leading up to the event. Take, for example, a picture of spilled milk and food on the floor; ask what might have happened.

Get in to pop culture. Yes, we are suggesting tv time. By exposing your child to popular, developmentally appropriate shows and public figures, they can join related conversations with friends and classmates.

New Focus Academy can help

New Focus Academy is a residential treatment program for boys ages 12 to 18 who struggle with neurodevelopmental disorders. This program focuses on developing self-reliance and relationship-building skills in students. Practical life skills such as coping with emotions, managing relationships, preparing meals, and applying for a job are all taught using a therapeutic approach. New Focus Academy gives young men the skills and confidence they need to lead a happy and healthy life. We can help your family today!

Contact us at (844) 313-6749

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