Athena Care
Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) Therapy in Nashville, TN

Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) Therapy in Nashville, TN

Jump to Section

What is ABA Therapy?

Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) is an evidence based treatment, which means effective treatment that has been thoroughly researched and studied and is based on scientific evidence.1,2 It’s typically used for treating autism spectrum disorders (ASD).

According to the principles of respondent and operant conditioning, ABA employs research-based strategies to alter significant behavior, such as social skills, communication, reading, academic performance, fine motor skills, sanitation, grooming, and job readiness.3

Applied Behavior Analysis services in Nashville, Tennessee are not “one size fits all.” Each program is created to cater to the specific learning demands of each learner. Any ABA program’s objective is to assist each participant in developing living skills that will increase their independence and success both now and in the future.

Programs for ABA therapy in Nashville can assist with the following:4

  • Boosting language and communication abilities
  • Enhancing academic performance, social skills, memory, and focus
  • Reducing problematic behaviors

A certified and trained behavior analyst (BCBA) creates and personally manages the program. ABA therapy is tailored to each learner’s abilities, requirements, interests, preferences, and family circumstances.

ABA therapists will begin by thoroughly evaluating each person’s abilities and preferences. This will be used to write detailed treatment objectives. The goals and priorities of the family may also be included. Skills are broken down into manageable, tangible steps in the lesson plan. The therapist demonstrates each stage one at a time, working up from the simplest to the most difficult.

Development is tracked by compiling information during each therapy session. Data enables them to assess the person’s progress toward their objectives continuously. The behavior analyst regularly meets with the program staff, family members, and participants to discuss the data. After that, they can prepare and modify their lesson plans and objectives accordingly.

Signs You Need ABA Therapy

In addition to autism spectrum disorder (ASD), ABA therapy in Nashville can also treat obsessive-compulsive disorder, panic disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, and/or other intellectual limitations.

The following symptoms may be signs that you or someone you love needs ABA therapy. However, it’s important to remember that people may not exhibit all or any of the signs below:

  • Avoids or breaks eye contact
  • Doesn’t respond to name by nine months
  • Doesn’t display joyful, sad, angry, or astonished facial expressions by nine months
  • Doesn’t engage in simple interactive games like pat-a-cake by 12 months
  • Makes few or no gestures (i.e., does not wave goodbye) at 12 months
  • By 15 months, does not share interests with others (i.e., shows you an object that they like)
  • By 18 months, does not point to show you something intriguing
  • At 24 months, does not recognize when others are harmed or unhappy
  • By 36 months, does not observe or engage in play with other children
  • By four years old, does not pretend to be someone else during play, such as a teacher or a superhero
  • Does not perform for you in song, dance, or acting by five years old
  • Sets toys or other items in a line and becomes irate if the order is changed
  • Repeatedly uses the same words or phrases (called echolalia)
  • Uses the same playstyle with toys every time
  • Is concentrated on object components (for example, wheels)
  • Upset by the slightest changes
  • Possesses obsessive interests
  • Must adhere to specified procedures
  • Flapping hands, rocking the body, or circling oneself
  • Demonstrates unique reactions to sounds, smells, tastes, sights, or feelings
  • Delayed language and motor skills
  • Delayed abilities in learning or thinking
  • Inattentive, impulsive, or hyperactive behavior
  • Seizure or epilepsy disorder
  • Unusual sleeping/eating patterns
  • Digestive disorders
  • Unusual emotions or mood swings
  • Anxiety, tension, excessive worry or the absence of fear, or unexpectedly high levels of fear

How to Choose the Best ABA Therapy Services in Nashville, TN

When deciding on ABA therapy services in Nashville, Tennessee, it’s crucial to remember that a therapist will potentially be entering your home and assimilating into your family’s daily routine for a prolonged period. Therefore, be sure to verify information and ask plenty of questions, including the following:

  • Credentials: education, training, license, and years of experience
    • Ideally, a therapist should be a Registered Behavior Technician (RBT). In addition to completing numerous hours of ABA training, Board Certified Behavior Analysts (BCBAs) monitor and supervise RBTs.5
    • If the patient is your child: Do you have experience working with children similar in age and behavior? If so, in what capacity?
  • Specialties and services offered
    • How is it decided when services are no longer necessary?
  • Treatment techniques and philosophies
    • Do you use only ABA techniques, or do you inject other forms of therapy into a session?
    • What does parent involvement look like in your treatment sessions?
  • What insurance companies do you work with?
  • What are your hours?
  • Pricing?
  • How long does a typical ABA therapy session run?

Athena Care is in-network with most major insurance plans. Find out more about your insurance coverage by calling your insurance company or by contacting us below. One of our care coordinators can help you navigate your insurance coverage to get the care you need.

How Much Does In-Home ABA Therapy Cost in Nashville?

Forbes estimates the annual cost of ABA therapy, excluding insurance, is about $17,000. However, it might range from $45,000 to $100,000 each year for some children with autism.6 In addition, therapy can range from 20 to 40 hours a week.

With all that in mind, an hour of in-home ABA therapy in Nashville, TN, typically costs $120 – $150. A good generalization is that insurance coverage for behavioral health services pays about $30,000 annually for the care of one child with ASD.7

Thankfully, ABA therapy is far less expensive with insurance coverage. Although benefits can vary, coverage for autism therapy is required by law in all 50 states.8 According to Tennessee state law, contracts and plans that offer benefits for neurological illnesses must also provide health insurance benefits for treating autistic children under the age of 12.9

Again, however, the above are average expenses that depend on various factors, including location, provider, and plan.

Athena Care Nashville, TN Autism Therapy Services

Autism testing in Nashville is accessible thanks to Athena Care’s behavioral health center at 220 Athens Way, Suite 104, Nashville, TN 37228. Our team of expert care coordinators is available Monday through Friday, 7:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. at (615) 320-1155. They are ready and willing to help with any queries regarding our various services for autism treatment, including including autism testing and diagnosis in Nashville, TN.

For both you and your child, Athena Care offers comprehensive care, which includes assessment, psychotherapy and medication management.

Athena Care is in-network with most major insurance plans. Find out more about your insurance coverage by calling your insurance company or by contacting us below. One of our care coordinators can help you navigate your insurance coverage to get the care you need.


  1. Selva, Joaquín Bc. S. “What Is Evidence-Based Therapy: 3 EBT Interventions.” PositivePsychology.com, 27 July 2022, positivepsychology.com/evidence-based-therapy.
  2. “Evidence-Based Treatment (EBT).” GoodTherapy.org Therapy Blog, 1 Apr. 2016, www.goodtherapy.org/blog/psychpedia/evidence-based-treatment.
  3. “Applied Behavior Analysis.” Psychology Today, www.psychologytoday.com/us/therapy-types/applied-behavior-analysis. Accessed 10 Oct. 2022.
  4. “Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA).” Autism Speaks, www.autismspeaks.org/applied-behavior-analysis. Accessed 7 Feb. 2023.
  5. Cicolello, Megan M. “How Can I Best Prepare for an ABA Therapist in My Home?” Autism Parenting Magazine, 21 June 2021, www.autismparentingmagazine.com/best-prepare-for-aba-therapist.
  6. Molko, Ronit. “What Is Covered? The Insurance Landscape for Autism Services.” Forbes, 18 Apr. 2019, www.forbes.com/sites/forbesbooksauthors/2019/04/18/what-is-covered-the-insurance-landscape-for-autism-services/?sh=133bbd3325c2.
  7. “ABA Therapy Cost: What to Expect.” Thread Learning, 9 Oct. 2019, www.threadlearning.com/blog/aba-therapy-cost-what-to-expect.
  8. “Autism and Insurance Coverage State Laws.” National Conference of State Legislatures, 24 Aug. 2021, www.ncsl.org/research/health/autism-and-insurance-coverage-state-laws.aspx.
  9. “Autism and Insurance Coverage State Laws.” National Conference of State Legislatures, 24 Aug. 2021, www.ncsl.org/research/health/autism-and-insurance-coverage-state-laws.aspx.

If you or someone you love would benefit from talking to a mental health provider in Tennessee, contact Athena Care.

One of our Care Coordinators will help you get the care you need.