Navigating Autism in Toronto: A Guide to Finding the Right Therapist

Takeaway: Navigating life with autism can be challenging, and seeking the support of a qualified psychologist is a crucial step. A psychologist specializing in Autism can provide valuable insights, strategies, and coping mechanisms tailored to your unique needs. Whether you’re seeking guidance for yourself or a caregiver looking for support, a therapist can enhance your overall quality of life.

Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is a neurodevelopmental condition that affects individuals in various ways. It is characterized by challenges in social interaction, communication, and repetitive behaviours. People with autism may also exhibit unique strengths and differences in perception and learning. Living with autism can impact daily life, relationships, and overall well-being.

3 Autism Therapists in Toronto Ready to Support You

1. Dr. Nadine Mourad

Dr. Nadine Mourad

  • Clinical, Educational and Counselling Psychologist – Assessments Only
  • Nadine Mourad is a registered Clinical Psychologist with experience in educational and clinical psychology. She has worked in private and school settings, evaluating and treating children and adolescents with Autism Spectrum Disorder, ADHD, sleep disorders, perfectionism, learning disabilities, anxiety and depression. She has a particular interest in the evaluation and counselling of children, adolescents and young adults with Autism Spectrum Disorder. Dr. Mourad also has experience working with immigrant populations as well as indigenous groups in urban settings.

2. Dr. Hemal Shroff, C.Psych.

Dr. Hemal Shroff, Clinical and School Psychologist in Toronto & Virtually at The Therapy Centre

  • Clinical & School Psychologist
  • Hemal Shroff is a Clinical and School psychologist registered with the College of Psychologists of Ontario. She completed her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from the University of South Florida. Dr. Shroff uses evidence-based cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) and dialectical behaviour therapy (DBT) approaches in her treatment. Dr. Hemal Shroff has extensive experience in working with individuals who present with difficulties with anxiety, depression, adjustment, relationship issues, stress, immigrant distress, behaviour management, self-esteem, ADHD, Autism, acculturation, and/or body image.

3. Dr. Julia Kim

Dr. Julia Kim Clinical School Psychologist in Toronto and virtually at The Therapy Centre

  • Clinical & School Psychologist
  • Julia Kim is a registered Clinical and School Psychologist who received her Doctorate (Psy.D.) from Fuller Seminary – School of Psychology (accredited by the American Psychological Association). Dr. Kim has a breadth of experience providing clinical, diagnostic, and psychoeducational assessments, as well as treatment for children, adolescents, and adults. She uses psychodynamic, Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT) and Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT) for anxiety, mood disorders, trauma, obsessive-compulsive disorder, Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), Learning Disabilities, executive dysfunction, emotional/behavioural dysregulation, and issues associated with Autism Spectrum Disorder.

Why choose The Therapy Centre for support with Autism Spectrum Disorder

There are several advantages to working with The Therapy Centre for autism-related services and support. Here are just a few:

  • Comprehensive Diagnostic Services: We offer comprehensive diagnostic evaluations for autism spectrum disorder. This includes thorough assessments conducted by qualified professionals to accurately identify and diagnose autism.
  • Family-Centered Approach: We recognize the importance of involving families and caregivers in the therapeutic process. We offer family-centered support, providing guidance, education, and resources to empower families in understanding and supporting their loved ones with autism effectively.
  • Accessible and Supportive Environment: We prioritize creating a welcoming, inclusive, and supportive environment for clients with autism and their families. This includes sensory-friendly spaces, accommodations for diverse needs, and a compassionate approach that respects clients’ unique perspectives and experiences.
  • Client-Centered Approach: Above all, we prioritize the well-being and empowerment of our clients. We prioritize active listening, empathy, and collaboration, ensuring that clients feel heard, valued, and supported throughout their therapeutic journey.

FAQs about getting an autism diagnosis in Toronto

What are some symptoms of Autism?

Recognizing the symptoms of autism is crucial in determining whether someone should seek a diagnosis. While symptoms can vary widely among individuals and may change over time, here are some common signs and behaviours associated with Autism Spectrum Disorder:

Social Challenges: Difficulty with social interaction is a hallmark symptom of autism. This may include:

– Difficulty understanding social cues, such as facial expressions, tone of voice, and body language.

– Challenges in initiating or maintaining conversations.

– Limited interest in or understanding of others’ emotions or perspectives.

– Difficulty making and maintaining friendships.

Communication Difficulties: Many individuals with autism struggle with communication. Symptoms may include:

– Delayed speech development or lack of speech altogether (nonverbal).

– Repetitive or echolalic speech (repeating words or phrases without context).

– Difficulty understanding language nuances, humour, or abstract concepts.

– Limited use of gestures or nonverbal communication (e.g., eye contact, facial expressions).

Repetitive Behaviors and Restricted Interests: Individuals with autism often engage in repetitive behaviours or have highly focused interests. These may include:

– Repetitive movements, such as hand-flapping, rocking, or spinning objects.

– Insistence on sameness or rigid adherence to routines.

– Intense preoccupation with specific topics, objects, or activities.

– Unusual sensory sensitivities or seeking sensory stimulation (e.g., sensitivity to certain sounds, textures, or lights).

Sensory Sensitivities: Many individuals with autism experience sensory sensitivities or differences, including:

– Hypersensitivity or hyposensitivity to sensory stimuli (e.g., touch, taste, smell, sound, sight).

– Overwhelm or discomfort in environments with bright lights, loud noises, or strong smells.

– Seeking or avoiding certain sensory experiences (e.g., seeking deep pressure or avoiding certain textures).

Difficulty with Changes and Transitions: Individuals with autism may struggle with changes in routine or transitions. Symptoms may include:

– Distress or agitation in response to unexpected changes.

– Difficulty transitioning from one activity or environment to another.

– Rigid adherence to rituals or routines, becoming upset if disrupted.


If you or someone you know exhibits several of these symptoms, it’s advisable to seek a professional evaluation from a specialist experienced in diagnosing autism.

Can a therapist help identify autism?

Absolutely. A skilled psychologist can play a pivotal role in identifying and diagnosing autism. Through comprehensive assessments, observations, and discussions, a therapist can evaluate behavioural patterns and communication styles. This process is essential for obtaining an accurate diagnosis, leading to a better understanding of the individual’s strengths and challenges.

How can a therapist help someone with autism?

A therapist specializing in Autism Spectrum Disorder brings expertise in developing personalized strategies to address challenges associated with the condition. Here are some ways in which a therapist can be beneficial:

Behavioural Interventions: Therapists can design and implement interventions to address specific challenges, promoting positive behaviours and reducing difficulties.

Social Skills Training: Individuals with autism often face difficulties in social interaction. Therapists can provide structured social skills training to improve communication, understanding social cues, and building meaningful connections.

Emotional Regulation: Many individuals with autism struggle with emotional regulation. Therapists can offer tools and techniques to manage emotions effectively, fostering a sense of well-being.

Family Support: Autism doesn’t just affect the individual but has an impact on the entire family. Therapists can provide guidance and support to families, helping them navigate the unique challenges associated with autism.

Counselling and Communication Strategies: For those with autism, expressing thoughts and feelings can be challenging. Therapists can teach effective communication strategies and provide a safe space for expression.

Are you ready to find support for Autism Spectrum Disorder?

Finding the right therapist can make a significant difference for those living with Autism Spectrum Disorder. By seeking support, you are taking a proactive step towards understanding, acceptance, and improved quality of life. Remember, you don’t have to navigate this journey alone – The Therapy Centre has skilled Psychologists, Social Workers and Psychotherapists who can assess and help support individuals and families affected by Autism Spectrum Disorder.

Our offices are located across the Greater Toronto and Hamilton area, at 2525 Old Bronte Road in Oakville, 849 Upper Wentworth Street in Hamilton, and in Toronto at 1849 Yonge St (Yonge and Davisville). We offer both in-person and Virtual Telehealth services, including secure phone sessions and videoconferencing.

Contact our team today at (289) 291-0205 or