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Archive for April, 2008

Autism Spectrum Disorder Explained

Autism spectrum disorder is a diverse developmental disorder that can be found in about 1 in 150 of our children. People that are suffering from this disorder have problems with social interaction and communicating verbally as well as non verbally. Although this is not always the case, you will generally know if your child has this disorder before they reach their third birthday. The only developmental disability that is more common is mental retardation. More children suffer from ASD than cystic fibrosis, multiple sclerosis, and cancer combined. As far as we know family income, race, education levels, and ethnicity are not a factor in whether or not your child will develop this disorder.

ASD is Described as a spectrum disorder due to the fact that the symptoms show up in many different combinations and can be either mildly or severely disabling. While we do not know what causes ASD, we do know that males are 4 to 5 times more likely to be afflicted with the disorder. Unfortunately, children that suffer from autism have a very difficult time making and sustaining friendships and spend a majority of their time isolated from others. Routines become very important to these children and if the pattern that has been set for them is interrupted you may have to deal with a severe outburst. And while these are some of the main characteristics of this disorder, not all children with autism will react to the same situation in the same way.

There are certain drugs, special diets, and various other treatments that researchers have discovered that can be a tremendous help to those that suffer from autism spectrum disorder. Parents of children that suffer from this disorder may become very frustrated while trying to find the proper treatment for their child. The symptoms of ASD are very diverse and usually not very well defined. All of this combined usually sends parents to seek out many different specialists in different fields. A short checklist for parents may include a delay in language skills development, unusually repetitive behavior, and a lack of social interaction. Of course, the best thing that you can do is to present your concerns to your doctor as soon as you possibly can.

For the most up to date information on managing and treating autism please see:

The Essential Guide To Autism

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Managing Your Child’s Autism Symptoms With Supplement Treatments

Supplements have gained in popularity in our society and have become a staple of the health and wellness industry. It has become very simple for us as individuals to give our bodies the proper nutrition needed, due to the vast variety of products that are available. Managing your child’s autism with supplement treatments is very important because autistic individuals face many difficulties getting the proper nutrition. Taking the proper supplements will help to keep your child nutritionally balanced.

The first thing to do when addressing autism symptoms and supplements is to being using a casein and gluten (GFCF) free diet. These two proteins can be very damaging to autism patients. It has been discovered that foods containing these proteins can produce natural opiates in some children with autism, making them crave those foods even more than they normally would. It is also very important to keep your child on a balanced, nutritional, and healthy diet. Because routines can become so important to autistic children, if you begin a healthy diet early and stick to it, your child will be more likely to accept it.

Have your doctor test your child to make sure they are getting the right amount of nutrients. Your child’s nutrient level can be discovered by performing a relatively simple blood test and any deficiencies in their diet can be addressed and adjusted. Medical practitioners who are associated with Defeat Autism Now! (DAN!) are an excellent place to begin due to the fact that they are specially trained to deal with the challenges that children with autism face.

There are several supplements that children suffering from autism are routinely lacking at the proper levels. They include calcium, zinc, vitamins C and E, cod liver oil, varied amino acids, selenium, magnesium, taurine, and essential fatty acids. When you begin to give your child supplements it is better to slowly work them in at a steady pace. It is also very important to pay attention to the effects the supplements are having on your child and document any behavior changes that you notice. This is information that you will want to provide to your doctor.

It will be hard to miss the changes that a dietary change and the implementation of supplements will bring about in your child. Potentially, the severity of your child’s behaviors can be reduced, and they may also improve in the area of social interaction. You will also want to keep track of any negative changes your child may go through. If they are having negative experiences, you will want to stop or reduce the amount of that particular supplement. Do yourself a favor and buy supplements in small amounts at first. It doesn’t make sense to buy in bulk and then be stuck with supplements that your child can’t use. Unfortunately, you will go through a lot of trial and error before finding the right combination of proper diet and supplements for your autistic child. There just aren’t any shortcuts.

If you decide that your child’s diet needs additional supplements, you will need to add them in a slow and controlled way. Your doctor will be able to help you put together a plan that will ultimately help your child become more successful, which will include frequent testing. Choosing to manage your child’s autism symptoms with supplement treatments is a process that shouldn’t be rushed. It will take time, but more often than not the results will be worth it.

For the most up to date information on managing and treating autism please see:

The Essential Guide To Autism

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Visual Perception Treatments For Autism

All Children are affected differently by autism, which doesn’t make it any easier to find the proper treatments necessary for your child to be able to deal with his or her specific symptoms. Visual perception is one of the issues that some children that are suffering with autism have trouble with. There are standardized methods that you can use to help your child improve their visual perception. This can be one of the more effective treatments for autism, which can make their learning and comprehension better in addition to possibly lessening problematic behavior.

Sensory overload and distortion is an issue for many children with autism. Many people that do not have this disorder also suffer with these same problems and there are a multitude of treatment options that are available. Autistic patients often have difficulty handling the sensory overload that can com from different colors, shapes, patterns, light, and contrasts. In some cases, the problem is genetic and the autism simply enhances the condition. If the parents have reading issues or other difficulties related to visual perspective problems, the child will probably need help too.

One of the more effective systems being used to deal with visual perception disorders is known as The Irene Method. Color is used in this system to produce a more harmonized world. One use of this method you may have actually experienced is to use a colored filter over a page while reading to enhance your comprehension and speed level. This has proven to be effective, not only for autistic children, but also for those that don’t have the disorder. Children with autism will probably benefit from the use of colored filters, not only while reading, but all day long. Special glasses with colored lenses have been developed to help with this issue. Not all children with autism will have the same response to each color, so you will have to use a little bit of trial and error to discover which color is blocking out the harmful light. Colored light bulbs can also be used in the home to help those with autism deal with their problems regarding visual perception.

Visual perception treatments for autism can help children with four different areas: social interaction, physical well being, depth perception, and learning. These colors can help a child determine the distance between themselves and an object, which helps with depth perception and makes the world a little more three dimensional for them. This will also help with their social interaction because they will feel calmer and will be able to see and interpret someone’s facial expressions a little more clearly. These colors can also make it easier to learn while reading, and can also reduce your child’s dizziness and headaches. In using these techniques, your autistic child has a better chance to be able to deal with their world by being able to overcome their problems with visual perception.

For the most up to date information on managing and treating autism please see:

The Essential Guide To Autism

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Autism Treatment And The Power Of Music

A relatively new method for treating individuals that are suffering from autism is musical therapy. When discussing treatment options, serious consideration should be given to incorporating this method. Musical therapy often helps patients improve their temperament as well as their learning skills. By connecting to the non-verbal sections of our minds, music proves to be an excellent form of therapy for those suffering from disorders that limit their communication skills. If you haven’t had much success with other forms of autism treatment, you may be pleasantly surprised by how much this method may help.

The reason that musical therapy can be so effective is because you can use it in addition to other treatments for learning social skills. By its very nature, music therapy is non-threatening to patients allowing behavior and social skills to be improved by the many games that can be played using this method. Autistic patients can break through social barriers through the encouragement of eye contact during singing or the use of an instrument, such as a harmonica, that needs to be in close proximity to your face.

The most important way that music therapy helps autistic patients is by helping to develop their use of speech. Music helps us connect to the verbal and the non-verbal functions of our minds. Many people that suffer from autism have varying degrees of difficulty with speech. Some patients can only make humming or grunting sounds, while others have developed the ability to put together words and sentences that will at least allow them to communicate. Regardless of how much skill the patient has with speech, there is something to be gained by participating in musical therapy.

It is not unusual for autistic patients to be particularly good with music. Some have excellent pitch; others can learn to play instruments with a minimum of instruction. Even if the person doesn’t show amazing musical abilities, some difficult to handle autistic patients have musical abilities that greatly exceed their other abilities. Musical therapists will use music to link this type of learning to other types of learning, including speech, social and behavioral development. This can also be used as a means of communicating emotions and to develop the memory.

Music therapy can be very beneficial to autistic patients on its own and when combined with other treatment techniques. A trained music therapist can teach a patient how to communicate using nonverbal methods, which makes it easier for autistic individuals to learn. It may be in your best interest to spend some time researching musical therapy to see if this form of treatment may be a good choice for you and your loved ones.

For the most up to date information on managing and treating autism please see:

The Essential Guide To Autism

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What You Should Know Regarding Autism And Diet

Most people don’t know that autism is a physical condition as well as a mental one. For this reason alone, controlling your child’s autism and diet go hand in hand. Studies have shown that over half of autistic children suffer from gastrointestinal issues including chrons disease and colitis. Some scientists believe that this disorder begins in the stomach. Their theory is that the gastrointestinal walls have been damaged, which allows toxins to seep into the bloodstream and affect the brain’s activity.

This is the reason why an autistic child’s parents need to monitor their child’s eating habits as well as their behavior. Foods that contain casein (dairy products) and gluten (rye, wheat, and barley) are foods that someone suffering from autism should not be eating. It appears that their body can’t properly digest them and this undigested protein becomes a poison that leaks into their circulatory system.

A GFCF diet (gluten-free, casein-free) is becoming increasingly popular with the parents of children suffering from autism. Some in the medical community are still skeptical, but other medical professionals and organizations completely support the GFCF diet. Defeat Autism Now (DAN) is one of those organizations. Many parents have found incredible improvements in their children after switching to this diet. They have noticed that their child has a longer attention span, makes better eye contact, and behaves less aggressively in general.

The hardest part for the parent is going to be implementing this diet. A major portion of many peoples diet includes dairy products as well as cereals. People that are allergic to gluten already know how difficult it is to find products that are gluten-free. When you add dairy to the list as well, the job becomes a lot harder. Making the job harder still, many children suffering from autism latch on to certain foods and simply refuse to eat other foods. With so many products containing casein or gluten, there is a pretty good chance that something your child likes will end up being a problem for you. Another thing to be aware of is that foods containing casein and gluten act as opiates, which will make your autistic child crave them even more.

It isn’t going to be easy to wean your child off of these foods. Most parents find that it is easiest to start by eliminating dairy. Because many people are lactose intolerant, dairy makes up a smaller percentage of most individuals’ diets than products containing gluten do. It is much easier to replace products containing casein with other foods. Unfortunately, this is not the case with gluten. Foods that don’t even contain gluten can be contaminated by it, because many different foods can be processed at the same facility. Examine all of a foods ingredients carefully and if you are still in doubt, check directly with the products manufacturer.

Monitoring your child’s autism and diet isn’t going to be easy, because many parents believe their child won’t eat if their favorite foods are taken away. You have to be firm as well as loving, and don’t give in when your child misbehaves because their menu at home has been changed. In a few short weeks, you may very well notice a change in the behavior of your child, and you may also be pleasantly surprised at what they are now willing to eat that they wouldn’t touch previously.

For the most up to date information on managing and treating autism please see:

The Essential Guide To Autism

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Treatments For Autism: Pills And Other Options

There are numerous medical options available these days to be able to deal with many diseases, illnesses, and disorders. You do need to know that there is no medical cure for autism, but some of the effects of autism can be controlled medically. Each drug has advantages as well as disadvantages, and the side effects may not be worth the benefit that they can provide. Your doctor can make a recommendation on which medication you may want to choose to properly treat autism, but this disorder varies in each individual which makes choosing the proper medication more difficult. Each person will react differently depending on which drugs are used.

First and foremost, safety must be your main concern. Some medications can not be used by children and people that are under a certain weight requirement. You will also want to find out how to administer the drug. Some people do better with pills, some with liquids, and some prefer injections. This is also important if you will be the one that will be administering the drug. It is also important to make sure that the dosage is easy to understand. Find out from your doctor how dangerous the medication is if it is taken by the wrong person. You will want that information if you have young children in the home. Learn what you should do if someone takes this medication and shouldn’t, it is better to be safe than sorry.

You will also want to take into consideration any of the possible side effects of the drug that you are considering. They may very well control some of the effects of autism such as hyperactivity, aggressive behavior, and responsiveness, but they may also induce nausea, dizziness, or act as a sedative. Carefully consider all of your options before beginning any medical treatment, because you may find yourself using medications to counteract the side effects of other medications. You will also want to find out what the long term effects of these drugs will be. Do they create dependency? What is their effect on someone physically over a long time period? All of this information can be given to you by your doctor, and should be taken into consideration before any drug treatment therapy is started.

The internet and your local library are very good places for you to begin to research the studies that have been done on many of these drugs. Medical journals and other current publications in the health care field are generally reliable. The information that you get on the internet may not be as reliable as those other sources, so please double check any information you receive with your doctor before taking action on the advice you receive in the internet. A medical professional will also be able to give you literature concerning the medical options that are available for those that suffer with autism. By doing the necessary research on the multiple medical options that are available those who are autistic, you can make better choices for your health and for the health of your loved ones.

For the most up to date information on treating and managing autism please see:

The Essential Guide To Autism.

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