Fatma Al Rahma           H00159050                 Autism in Children                            by                   Fatm...
Fatma Al Rahma                                    H00159050                                            Table of contentAbs...
Fatma Al Rahma                        H00159050                                      Abstract  We all know the Term “Autis...
Fatma Al Rahma                        H00159050members when it comes to their autistic children, how they go through diffe...
Fatma Al Rahma                       H00159050Asperger Syndrome lacks behind to meet the requisite. Coming back to AutismS...
Fatma Al Rahma                        H00159050SymptomsThe signs or symptoms are noticeable by parents between the age of ...
Fatma Al Rahma                        H00159050  “An evaluation of autism will often include a complete physical and nervo...
Fatma Al Rahma                         H00159050      •   difficulty in making new friends      •   being cranky and unsta...
Fatma Al Rahma                       H00159050Autistic children show different characteristics. It varies from one child t...
Fatma Al Rahma                        H00159050Children with autism experience various forms of Sensory sensitivity which ...
Fatma Al Rahma                         H00159050the disorder is not well explained, children having it is not only faces e...
Fatma Al Rahma                        H00159050       distant relationship between couple which result in childs mental di...
Fatma Al Rahma                        H00159050ConclusionRecently there has been a debate on the causes of Autism. Some of...
Fatma Al Rahma                           H00159050Mitchell, Kevin ( February 4, 2012). Autism Spectrum — Tony Humphreys,Cl...
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  1. 1. Fatma Al Rahma H00159050 Autism in Children by Fatma Ahmad Al Rahma March 19, 2012 (H00159050) 1
  2. 2. Fatma Al Rahma H00159050 Table of contentAbstract......................................................................................2Introduction................................................................................3About Autism.............................................................................4Literature Review........................................................................5Symptoms...................................................................................6Diagnosis....................................................................................7Social Impacts.............................................................................8Autism and its Characteristics.....................................................9Role of Media..............................................................................10Solution........................................................................................11Conclusion....................................................................................12References....................................................................................13 2
  3. 3. Fatma Al Rahma H00159050 Abstract We all know the Term “Autism” but I am sure not many of us are aware of its actual meaning and its deep impact on society. My intention is to highlight onthis subject to create an awareness among people and the media and what partthey can play in order to improve the lives of families dealing with Autism. Like any other normal child, autistic children need attention or shall I say extra attention and efforts by their family and surroundings. In this report, I will be discussing their daily issues and problems, their thought process along with their feelings in different scenarios. I will also explain some noteworthy suggestions for how media can support this cause and lastly, a piece of advice for mothers with significant guidelines on diagnosing their childs nurturing and how she can rescue her child from being neglected and providing a better lifestyle.IntroductionFor years, Autism has been nothing but merely a name. We all are aware of it and wedo know that it is a disease but nothing more than that. Autism as a meaning issomething different from our perspective. All being said, it happens to someunfortunate people and we are not supposed to mingle around them. To have abroader view, I have presented this report in a manner just to have a transparentclarification of Autism. What it exactly is and how it can effect us. People aroundthem are used to their way of dealing with children with autism but for strangers it isquite confusing to realize what exactly the autistic child is trying to convey. Childrenwith autistic disorder usually are unable to interpret with the outer world.Children suffering from Autism have a very complex developing disorder mainlyfocusing on their issues while interacting socially, their communicational mode.Some are observed to have an impaired verbal communication and some deal withnon verbal communication issues. Their growth is very gradual and is in a repetitivemanner. They do not wish to have a change in their rules or schedules. They feel it asa threat to themselves when observe a change in their lifestyle. Further in this reportexplains about the consequences faced by the children and their families. They havelimited restriction to their interests and how they love to be involved in their ownimaginary world.As we go further, the report describes the problems faced by parents and family 3
  4. 4. Fatma Al Rahma H00159050members when it comes to their autistic children, how they go through differentphases and from childhood to puberty and beyond, parents worry for them as they aregrowing old. Advice to media on how they can cover the topic like parents sufferingand their guilt, their daily problem with their normal children, their marriage being onstake and other problems related to their lives, How media can focus on this area andbring about a change in peoples thing and judgements through ways like campaigns,advertisements, shows and other channels. Lastly, giving out tips to all the mothershaving autistic children, how they can observe the symptoms at the very early ageand believe in their instincts. This report is giving out a detailed explanation about theAutism along with children suffering from it and how we can be of a help to thisgenre.About AutismAutism is mainly related to the neural disorder, which is known as disorder of neuraldevelopment. In this, the persons mental growth is very slow and restricted whichmakes him or her grasp only limited habits and environment leading them to becomevery less social. Their behavior will be repetitive due to which the surroundingaround them be it human or things cannot be changed often. If done so, leads to theirmental disturbance causing irritation and eventually illness. Usually the exact age fordetection of Autism in a child is not as such prescribed but on common basis, Autismcan be noticeable in a child between the age of 2-3 years. But like it is mentioned thatthere is no age limit, some children show the characteristics much later. In Autism,the nerve cells are altered along with their synapses which results affecting brainsinformation processing but how this process takes place is not yet well understood bythe doctors.Autism is a disability related to development. The developmental pattern of Autisticperson will be very slow or even remains the same for the rest of the life. It is adevelopmental disability noticed through the Autistic persons communication, howhe is relating with people around them and most importantly how they take on theworld or sense people and everything surrounding them. It is a never endingdisability in simple words which cant be diagnosed permanently but can ease up onthem through different modes and medical medications.Autism Spectrum which is also known as (ASDs) is one the most identifiable out ofother two autism disorders which are Asperger syndrome, it is concerned withAutistic person who lacks behind in Cognitive and language development and theother Disorder is Pervasive Developmental Disorder-Not otherwise Specified (PDD-NOS) which is determined under a condition when complete autistic criteria or 4
  5. 5. Fatma Al Rahma H00159050Asperger Syndrome lacks behind to meet the requisite. Coming back to AutismSpectrum disorder or simply ASD, “ spectrum” is a term which is used in this casebecause even when all autistic people contribute difficulty in the same three commonareas but their situations will vary from one another that Every individual with autismwill show different symptoms. For some will live everyday lives reasonably but somewill have to get used to specialist support for rest of their lives.Literature Review“The article by Tony Humphreys claiming that autism is caused by "cold" oremotionally distant parents, displays such willful ignorance, lack ofunderstanding and density of inaccurate and offensive statements that it isshocking that the Irish Examiner would publish it.”Kevin Mitchell said in hisletter to the Examiner“In February 2007, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)announced that the previous rate of children diagnosed with autism before theage of eight, 1 in 166, increased to 1 child in every 150. This sudden changespawned conversation and controversy. Some factions such as parent advocacygroups welcomed this announcement, but others completely dismissed them.those in the who disagree that the rate of autism in children is rising state thewidening of the definition of autism over the years and more thoroughdiagnosis are the reasons behind the increase. In an interview with 60 Minutesaired February 18, 2007, Dr. Stephen Goodman, an epidemiologist at JohnsHopkins University, stated, "The explosive increase that has been claimed isalmost certainly not true. The numbers, if theyre rising, are not rising veryquickly, if its going up at all." Yet later in the same story, it states, “There’s noquestion more children are being diagnosed with autism than ever before,” andthere is extensive evidence, such as the new report published by the CDC, thatthis statement is true.”posted by Terica E. Adams“Autism is a relatively newly identified disability, it was recognized as adistinct syndrome by an American psychologist, Leo Kanner in 1943. Initiallythere was only academic interest in the condition, however, service provisiondevelopment began during the late 1950s in Europe and the U.S.A. WithinVictoria no services were provided specifically for children with Autism until1968.”An Affiliate of Autism Victoria 5
  6. 6. Fatma Al Rahma H00159050SymptomsThe signs or symptoms are noticeable by parents between the age of 1 to 2. thesymptoms are very gradual, like any other normal children an autistic child grownormally at the earlier age but later shows regressive growth. Behavioral andcognitive intervention at their earlier age can help the Autistic child in many positiveways, a child benefits out socially and other useful communicational modes. There isno such accurate cure for this kind of disorder, there have been scenarios in whichtotal recovery have been seen. Some children having Autistic disabilities grow out tobe independent whereas some still rely on their family members even reaching theadulthood.For parents it is quite hard to accept their precious angel is suffering from the neverending disorder but the sooner they accept the reality and proceed with diagnoses thebetter, finding solution at the earliest is for the betterment of the autistic child. Theimpact is greater if diagnosed in the very beginning along with dealing otherdevelopments helps a lot. The most essential part is to observe the warning symptomssince the very early age like in babies and toddlers. If the the disorder is detectedwithin eighteen months, many of its side effects can be stopped or minimized. Even ifthe detection is done later, still one should never let go of hope because treatmentsupports in a childs growth mentally and physically as well. Some common signs areseen very visibly like if a autistic child suffers in cognitive and motor along withsensory mode.Diagnosis“There is no lab test or X-ray that can confirm the diagnosis of autism. The diagnosisof autism is based on clinical judgment regarding observations of the individualsbehavior. Information from family members and other observers is of primaryimportance in making the diagnosis; however, the pediatrician may order tests torule out other conditions that might be confused with autism, such as mentalretardation, metabolic or genetic diseases, or deafness”explained Roxanne DrydenThere have been checklist created by the medical centers and doctors concerning thesymptoms of Autism in a child. The checklist varies from age to age like in toddlers,the checklist is different from the one for babies. There have been seminars advisingparents to observe their childrens growth in a very beginning stage so as to avoid anyobstacles. Parents should trust their own instincts in order to save their child healthboth mentally and physically. If there is some unusual changes observed, immediateaction should be taken by the parents. Taking them to doctors and taking certainnecessary actions to further evaluate the childs developmental status. 6
  7. 7. Fatma Al Rahma H00159050 “An evaluation of autism will often include a complete physical and nervous system (neurologic) examination. It may also include a specific screening tool, such as: • Autism Diagnostic Interview - Revised (ADI-R) • Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule (ADOS) • Childhood Autism rating Scale (CARS) • Gilliam Autism Rating Scale • Pervasive Developmental Disorders Screening Test - Stage 3” mentioned in a Health Guide in the NewYorkTimes Social Impacts Children who are involved in high-functioning autism usually undergo a more intensive and reoccurring loneliness compare to that of non-autistic children. It is commonly believed that autistic children prefer being alone but the fact is creating and sustaining relationship or specifically friendship is not an easy task for them, they face a lot of mental difficulties. They prefer quality on quantity which results their rare friends and on this note prediction of their loneliness is done. Occasional or functional friendships which are made during events like birthday parties or any other festive impact on their quality of life. For autistic children, world consisting of people, events and places are very hard to sense causing anxiety within them. It is rather a challenge for them to participate in events and being surrounded with unknown faces. Socializing with new people or children is a dispute within themselves. For normal kids, making friends on birthday parties is not an issue for them but for autistic children, it is not only difficult but they end up pondering the visible difference between themselves and normal children. “Triad of impairments “or the major three difficulty areas faced by the autistic people are listed below: 1. difficulty with social communication 2. difficulty with social interaction 3. difficulty with social imagination.1.Difficulty with social communication • fail to have an eye contact with new kids or objects around • weak playing skills • over focused on objects attracting them 7
  8. 8. Fatma Al Rahma H00159050 • difficulty in making new friends • being cranky and unstable unreasonably on occasion to have their mothers attention • feeling nervous when touched 2.Difficulty with social interactionAutistic children always face difficulty realizing other children or their closed ones emotions and at the same time they are inarticulate in expressing their own feelings and thought process to their family and friends. Below are some listed situations that obstructs them to be socially fit: • Unable to get the unsaid rules for socializing, sometime talking to other children or elders about inconvenient topics • Unable to realize someone elses emotions and turns to be ignorant • prefer playing alone rather having company • unable to seek comfort from unknown friends • express their anger or irritating nature especially to their mothers irrelevant of people around 3.Difficulties with social imagination • unable to interpret other children or elders thought process • being highly predictive of future incidents or events • realize well the Danger concept, being already alert in case feel any threat approaching towards them • love to be in their own imaginary world • always ready for a change • coping up in unknown scenarios Autism and its Characteristics in Children 8
  9. 9. Fatma Al Rahma H00159050Autistic children show different characteristics. It varies from one child to anotherbelow listed are characteristics Autistic children can have or may show: 1. Love of routines 2. Sensory sensitivity 3. Special interests 4. Learning disabilitiesLove of routinesFor autistic children, world sometimes seems very doubtful and bewildering.Sometimes they even prefer not being involved in any gatherings so as to feel safe,they prefer their closed ones company the most especially their mothers. They opt fora fixed timetable for their days. They feel uncomfortable if changes are made in thedaily routine. They like to be around things and people whom they have always beenused to, same schedules assures them that they are aware of what is going on in theirlives. For example, they will always like to have breakfast at the same time on thesame place with same people, any addition to above might disturb them resulting intheir inappropriate reactions. They sometimes sense threat when a change is made intheir lives especially when their closed ones are not paying enough attention towardsthem, Autistic children usually seek their mothers attention the most.Autistic children love to follow the rules that they have being following for a longtime now. Any alteration or modification disturbs them, Autistic children are nothappy with changes because their grasping power is very less as compare to thenormal kids. They do not wish to add any new rules except if explained to themseveral times and in a very polite way which only mothers can do. Adapting adifferent approach for same thing might disturb them. But if they are thought fromthe very beginning to be prepare for future changes then its not a big issue. Therequisite is to teach the autistic child the ability to mould themselves in newenvironment.Sensory sensitivity 9
  10. 10. Fatma Al Rahma H00159050Children with autism experience various forms of Sensory sensitivity which canoccur in either few or all of the five senses. Some will experience the sensitivity ontouch while some get irritated on high volume music or talks, autistic children areusually very sensitive to smell and touch, some only prefer their mothers cookedfood, on giving different food their taste buds become alert and refuse the unfamiliartaste offered to them. Autistic children can be Hypersensitive or Hypo-sensitive.Their are cases where the autistic child will have sensory sensitivity in all five senseslike sight,smell,touch,sound and taste. In these case, family members have to be verycareful in order to maintain their autistic childs sensitivity balanced.Special interestsChildren often have an intensity towards some special interests in avery young ageitself. They can either change with time or remain same for the whole life. Theinterest varies from music to art drawing or any moving technological objects evenplants. In these cases Autistic child would prefer studying about its interest more oreven work in their field of interest and for some it will just merely be a hobby or aleisure time activity. There are cases where some autistic children will have a verydisturbing or unusual interest which can disturb their family and overcome that wouldbe a challenge for the family members.Learning disabilitiesAutistic children face learning disability on a very common basis which later on hasan impact in their later lives. There are some which can have eating disability, somewill find difficulty in washing themselves and some will find it hard studying atschool. Usually this happens because on initial stage all this was done by theirmothers in most of the cases and to maintain this bonding children refuse toindependent. But on proper motivation, some children bring about a change and somementally unprepared to break this bonding as a result, being dependent trough outtheir lives.Role of MediaMedia has always played a significant role in representing Autism to the world and inchanging point of view towards this subject but it does lack behind focusing onAutism spectrum Disorder.The reason can be many, may be it is not that well know issue yet or may be mediafaces difficulty in portraying this disorder mainly because of its dependence onSpectrum. Due to its inadequate information in public it sometimes leads tointolerable situations and strong and harsh judgements.These not only affects the autistic children but their entire family and gatherings. If 10
  11. 11. Fatma Al Rahma H00159050the disorder is not well explained, children having it is not only faces embarrassmentbut also judged in a very negative way. Mostly ASD individuals are referred assavants through media means. The media has to create a better and accurateinformation on this disorder in order to correct peoples perspective towards autisticchildren and even adults.There are many facts that has been missed by media all these years, besides thisshould have been the center of point so as to improve peoples judgements towardsthis genre. Below are some important points listed for media to display for creating abetter and judgmental free environment. • The treatment for this disorder is rather never ending and unaffordable by some parents, even if the family is well settled it does bring family to losses dealing with their autistic childs medical fees and other expenses. Portraying parent’s issues would be beneficial for them to an extent; they would be understood by others and will gain some sympathy and sometime help in form of money or other needs. • Some families are lucky to be able to overcome expenses but some are in difficult situations not able to provide the right treatment for their autistic child like biomedical and other necessary treatments required to improve their childs mental and physical health. Thus, leading to parent’s guilt of not providing all the requisites. These family members should be targeted in order to get help and reduce down their guilt for their children. • Like any other normal children, autistic children as well go through the phase of puberty. The family members face extreme difficulty dealing with this issue as the child, boy or a girl won’t be able to adapt this change in their body for long time resulting in their anger and irrigative nature. Media should focus on having programs for such issues so that parents or family can have better ideas to deal with these circumstances. • There are many cases when children are diagnosed very much later in their life. Though an age range has been prescribed by doctors but again there is no such exact age limit to this disorder, media should arrange campaigns every 6 months at the least in order to create awareness among society regarding this issues where doctors can check and give out speeches and some kind of checklist that parents can follow s o as to observe their children activities as per the list. • An autistic child often binds his or her parents together more than a normal child can do but cases where financial problems are involved leads to more 11
  12. 12. Fatma Al Rahma H00159050 distant relationship between couple which result in childs mental disturbance. This is a very important issue and media should create an awareness programs from time to time in order to resolve parents problems and advise tips for their relationships betterment because Autistic child needs a very normal atmosphere in order to adapt a normal lifestyle and parents are the main part of the childs life. Media should suggest couple marriage counseling at the same time which wont cost them much and improve their issues as well. • To give an autistic child a better environment and fulfill all his or her needs can often make parents neglect their other normal children. As a result, siblings who are normal even face psychological issues, feeling of being ignored does an impact on a childs life. Thus, media should target out some TV programs related to this issues which can improve this kind of families living. • Parents always worry about their autistic child, especially when they are growing old and realizing that they wont always be there to help them out. Media should encourage big entities to accommodate such children under their guidance or finance them out. Doing this can resolve elderly parents issues and worries and the child can be taken care of as well. • Unexpectedly, there are autistic adults who can guide autistic child well with their experience in life and their adaptation for a better environment. Media can arrange shows regarding this where all adults suffering from tis disorder can chat and explain the autistic child about life issues and a better way of living. This can in a way ease up parents worry and shed the load off them to an extent.Media is mode of communication which has resolved many problems in the past be itpolitics or any other but this time Media should appear as a helping hand for theseAutistic little angels through organizing programs, show, campaigns so that they canhave a better life. 12
  13. 13. Fatma Al Rahma H00159050ConclusionRecently there has been a debate on the causes of Autism. Some of the recommendedvaccinations (MMR) that is given to children in two intervals might be the cause ofAutism. The vaccinations carry a very high level of Mercury, which can cause aNeuro disorder. This presumption is very much debatable, however, there are manyinstances of this being true. This can go on and on, however, the real cause can onlybe found in the coming years through research and innovation.All the above discussions reveal that there is much more to this than just disorder. Achild having autism is as important as normal child in this society. Media should dotheir part as they have access all over the map which can not only ease parentsproblem but provide improved future to the autistic child. One thing has beenexamined in this whole report that parents play the most important role especiallymothers, They have to be more aware of their childs nurturing. Some very importantpoints have been highlighted in this report chiefly on childs growth. Mothers shouldvery closely observe their kids development, go through online article and doctors toknow a childs step by step growing at that certain age. If in case, the child is lackingbehind, trust you instinct and immediately show a doctor, be medically aware whattests have been done on your child, never wait for the right time to come, if you aredoubtful, do approach a medical center concerning with Autism so as to be assure.Most importantly, be aware of such centers and medical organizations so that you donot face delay. Lastly, a second opinion is always a must. Rest is on God.References 13
  14. 14. Fatma Al Rahma H00159050Mitchell, Kevin ( February 4, 2012). Autism Spectrum — Tony Humphreys,Clinical Psychologist, Blames the Parents. retrieved March 19, 2012, fromBock The Robber Web Site: http://bocktherobber.com/2012/02/autism-spectrum-tony-humphreys-clinical-psychologist-blames-the-parents/Adams, Terica E ( February 4, 2012). Welcome to Autism Exposed! . retrievedMarch 19, 2012, from Welcome to Autism Exposed! Web Site:http://autismexposed.com/aboutus.aspxVictoria, Autism Autistic Citizens Residential & Resources Society of VictoriaInc.. (n.d) retrieved March 19, 2012, from Autistic Citizens Residential &Resources Society of Victoria Inc. Web Site:http://home.vicnet.net.au/~alphatee/autism.htmDryden, Roxanne Autism. (n.d) retrieved March 20, 2012, fromemedicinehealthWeb Site: http://www.emedicinehealth.com/autism/page6_em.htm#Exams%20and%20TestsHealth Guide. (March 20, 2012). retrieved March 20, 2012, from New YorkTimes Web Site: http://health.nytimes.com/health/guides/disease/autism/overview.html 14