Autism - Questions & Answers


Published on

  • Be the first to comment

  • Be the first to like this

No Downloads
Total views
On SlideShare
From Embeds
Number of Embeds
Embeds 0
No embeds

No notes for slide

Autism - Questions & Answers

  1. 1. Home About Us *WISH LIST* Mission & History Mailing List Contact Us Autism: Questions & Answers Search Successes Posted on March 3, 2011 by skhov Video Recent Posts Therapies There are many baffling expressions used to describe Autism: Questions & Answers No Child Left Behind: At Shema Sponsor a Child the numerous psychological conditions and behaviors Kolainu we live by this philosophy. Forum which are officially diagnosed as Autism Spectrum Visitors around the year at Shema Donate Kolainu Disorder (ASD). Autism is a Pervasive Development The Graduation Struggles in Disorder (PDD) that begins at birth or within the first Autism Education Autism WorkshopsCenter-based Programs two-and-a-half years of life. Most children with autism,Home-based Programs usually, are perfectly normal in their physical Recent Comments Training appearance. However, they spend their free time Workshops Archives occupying themselves with confusing behaviors which March 2011 are noticeably different from those of typical children Categories Applied Behavior their age, and cane be very upsetting to those around Uncategorized Analysis them. Many of these behaviors include repetitive What is Autism? actions such as hand-flapping, head banging and Meta Autism in the News Log in SKHOV News other potentially injurious behaviors. Entries RSS Press Comments RSS Kolainu Magazine What is Autism? Our understanding of the Autism Spectrum Disorder Books and Articles Links (ASD) has advanced rapidly in recent years. ASD’s Schools are a family of neurodevelopmental conditions Conferences characterized by unusual patterns in social interaction, Social Media communication, and range of interests and activities. While this profile is generally applicable for the entire Send Us Feedback ASD population, much variation actually exists. No two individuals exhibit the exact same symptoms and as such ASD is a heterogeneous disorder. Autism is called an invisible disability because you can not tell if a person has autism simply by looking at him. Instead, you have to examine the person’s behaviors. If you think that you or someone you love may be autistic, you’ll probably have noticed certain symptoms. Perhaps you’ve observed a lack of eye contact, difficulty with social relationships, speech delays, or odd physical behaviors such as rocking, finger flicking or toe walking. These are the “red flags” that suggest something might be wrong — and that something might be autism. Autism cannot be diagnosed with a medical test, screening. Diagnosis involves interviews, observation and evaluations. A precise diagnosis must be based
  2. 2. on observation of the individual’s communication,behavior, and developmental levels. However,because many of the behaviors associated withautism are common with other disorders, a variety ofmedical tests may be planned to rule out or identifyother possible causes of the symptoms beingexhibited as well parental interview.Autism diagnosis is based on clinical observation andtesting by a professional using one or morestandardized tests. Professionals most likely todiagnose autism are psychologists, psychiatrists,developmental pediatricians, and schoolpsychologists. Some of the screenings and tests whichmay be used in the diagnostic process are: CARS(Childhood Autism Rating Scale), Autism DiagnosticChecklist Form E-2, CHAT (Checklist for Autism inToddlers), M-CHAT (Modified Checklist for Autism inToddlers), Pervasive Developmental DisordersScreening Test -2, ADOS (Autism DiagnosticObservation Scale), and ADI-R (Autism DiagnosticInterview – Revised).There are five disorders under the PDD umbrellawhich include Autism, Aspergers, Rhett’s Syndrome,Childhood Disintegrative Disorder, and PDD-NOS (nototherwise specified).What Causes Autism?While there is no known distinctive cause of autism,there is increasing evidence that autism most likelyhas a number of causes or etiological factions thatcontribute to its manifestations. There is someindication of a genetic influence in autism. There is agreater likelihood that identical twins will have autismthan fraternal twins. In the case of identical twins,there is a 100% overlap in genes; whereas in fraternaltwins, there is a 50% overlap in genes, the sameoverlap as in non-twin siblings.Currently, a great deal of research has focused onlocating the ‘autism gene; however, many researchersspeculate that in the end, a hundred or more geneswill likely be associated with the heterogeneity ofautism. There is also evidence that the genetic link toautism may be a weakened or compromised immunesystem. Other research has shown that depressionand/or dyslexia are quite common in one or both sidesof the family when autism is present.
  3. 3. There is also evidence that a virus can cause autism.There is an increased risk in having an autistic childafter exposure to rubella during the first trimester ofthe pregnancy. In addition, there is also a mountingfear by parents that viruses linked to vaccinations,such as the measles component of the MMR vaccineand the pertussis component of the DPT shot maycause autism. However, there is no known researchthat supports this assumption and recently the MMRvaccine theory has come under extreme criticism.There is increasing alarm that toxins and pollution inthe environment can also lead to autism. There is ahigh prevalence of autism in some parts of California,various areas in Queens and Staten Island, as well ascertain parts of New Jersey. Several agencies arenow attempting to uncover the reasons for the highpercentage of autism in this community, which may berelated to environmental conditions.Canadian researchers have become the first to identifyspecific behavioral signs in infants as young as 12months that can predict, with incredible accuracy,whether a child will develop autism.The preliminary findings, published recently in theInternational Journal of Developmental Neuroscience,were taken from an ongoing study of 200 Canadianinfants, the largest study of its kind in the world. Theinfants, many of whom have been followed from birthto 24 months, are younger siblings of children whohave been diagnosed with autism.Studies show that families with one autistic child havea roughly five to10 percent chance of a second childbeing diagnosed with autism, a rate of recurrenceabout 50 times higher than the general population.Chaired by Dr. Lonnie Zwaigenbaum, a developmentalpediatrician with the Offord Centre and McMasterChildren’s Hospital and a lead investigator for theCanadian study, the Canada – U.S. Baby SibsResearch Consortium is supported by the NationalAlliance for Autism Research (NAAR) and the NationalInstitute of Child Health and Human Development(NICHD) in the U.S. It is widely regarded as one themost exciting developments in autism research today.Dr. Zwaigenbaum was also a noted speaker at theIcare4autism Conference in Jerusalem this past Julyco-sponsored by Shema Kolainu-Hear Our Voices.
  4. 4. “This is a groundbreaking work that is pushing thefrontier of what we know about the biological nature ofautism, and why it emerges so early in life,” says Dr.Zwaigenbaum. “Our hope is that it will lead to thedevelopment of new and earlier treatments that couldmake a huge difference for these children.”While autism is difficult enough to detect in youngchildren, it can be even more complex to diagnose inolder children especially when the child appears veryintelligent and can speak.According to Lorna Wing, an internationally recognizedresearcher, children on the spectrum: “share a triad ofimpaired social interaction, communication, andimagination, associated with a rigid, repetitive patternof behavior …The triad can be recognized at all levelsof intelligence and can occur alone or together withany otherphysical or psychological disorder.” Wing,L.(1996) Autistic Spectrum Disorder. British MedicalJournal,312There is also the challenging distinctiveness of ‘high-functioning autism’ or Asperger’s Syndrome, whichincludes:• Social Deficits: Even though they may be veryintellectual, they are socially immature and have greatproblems and usually little interest in making friends.This presents particular problems for school agechildren who are often the victims of bullying.• Perseverating: many children become expert incertain topics in which they accumulatecomprehensive information that they repeatexcessively. They do not fully comprehend the notionof taking turns and are insensitive to the needs ofother people they are in conversation with.Is There A Cure For Autism?There is no known cure for autism. However, autismcan be treated and those with autism can learn tocommunicate and to share in family life. Most parentstry a variety of interventions to find what is effectivewith their child. Research has shown that AppliedBehavioral Analysis (ABA) can be very successful withpeople with ASD, ideally at as early an age aspossible.Some people who appear classically autistic as young
  5. 5. children are able to overcome their symptoms and become high functioning, usually as a result of their needs being met through an effective early intervention program. Research has shown that the functional ability of most people tends to improve with age. However, if they are not taught communication skills, frustration can lead to severe behavior problems. Will People with ASD ever be Able to Live Independently? • Many people with autism do flourish and go on to hold responsible jobs and live independently. Others have the intellectual abilities to be employed but are held back by their inability to adapt socially to the stresses of everyday life. • The focus of every intervention program for the person with autism should be to work on helping them adapt to living in society. Their quality of life and ability to function is far more important than how they do on an I.Q. test. Autism doesn’t have to be a life sentence; it is an illness that can be treated and offers much hope for parents and caretakers if they take the necessary steps early on to combat it. By becoming more aware of the options open to you one can do much in alleviating many of the problems children with autism will face later in life. We can establish a mutual connection and relationship with each child, which is the stage for all education and growth.This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged autism donation, autismschools brooklyn, autism workshops, donations for autism, early intervention,early intervention for autism, home based programs for autism, resources forautism, schools for autism in new york, schools for autism ny. Bookmark the permalink.