What is Pain?

As a member of a family with varying pain responses on the extreme ends (both over and underesponsiveness) I found this interesting

Knowing Neurons

For many, pain is an indescribably awful feeling that causes suffering and emotional distress.  It is a sensation that is so unpleasant – so unbearable – that most people will go to great lengths to avoid it.  For others, enduring pain has become a rite of passage (tattoo, anyone?) that signifies mental strength and discipline.  The ceremony, however, does not diminish the pain itself or one’s primal urge to avoid it.  Regardless, many people live a relatively pain-free life, and those that choose to endure pain do so on their own free will.  For those that suffer from neuropathic pain, however, pain has become an unavoidable specter that haunts every moment of their lives.

Neuropathic pain is a chronic pain syndrome that is often the result of tissue or nerve damage.  A commonly known form of neuropathic pain is “phantom limb syndrome,” in which an amputee continues to feel pain…

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Engage becomes EngageKids

Engage is undergoing a slight restructure. It is becoming clear to me in my work in a primary school, that many of the subjects I am writing about, for example executive function, attention, working memory and emotional regulation, can apply to all children as these skills and abilities develop throughout childhood. So I am broadening the scope of the blog beyond just those with autism and ADHD. I shall still be covering subjects relating to ASD and ADHD, such as social, communication, sensory issues, and alertness in addition to the topics mentioned above, as well as sharing strategies.

This blog is now known as EngageKids: a Learning and Wellbeing blog.


For a dedicated ADHD resource see www.engageadhd.org


Why we should focus on children’s emotional intelligence not IQ


English: freedom of expression, Expression of ...

Having a good set of exam results does open doors for many children but it is not the most important thing. Research shows that people high in emotional intelligence do better in the workplace and are happier in their romantic relationships. Some children are born better able to control their emotions than others but that does not mean that you can’t improve your child’s ability to manage their emotions.

So how can you teach your child emotional intelligence?

You can help your child to understand that the way they think about things can change the way they feel. For example, if your child comes home from school and says that George would not play with them today, you might ask them why they think this was. If they say, that they think it is because George doesn’t like them anymore, you can then ask them to think of other possible…

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When the eldest of my children was diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder and ADHD two years ago, I was overwhelmed by the amount of information and misinformation that was out there on the Internet. Sorting the wheat from the chaff was a mammoth task. I wanted the information quickly, with practical strategies that could help me now. Since then my youngest has also been diagnosed with ASD and in the last two years I have built up a wealth of information and tried and tested strategies. I have sifted through scientific studies, read many books, attended courses and seminars, and looked to my own coping mechanisms, as I feel I echo many of my children’s symptoms and have learned ways to manage them. Continue reading