Have you ever met someone who is autistic? Perhaps someone in your family – a child or grandchild – suffers from the disorder? If you’ve never been exposed to someone with autism, you may not know a whole lot about it – the effects it has on learning, social capabilities and family life.
But if you do know someone with autism, you know those effects all too well.
Developmental disabilities can be devastating, especially if you don’t know how to treat your child’s condition. And autism is definitely one such disorder.
So what causes this disorder? And can anything be done to ease its effects? Take a look below for more information on autism – including causes and possible treatments.
According to the Autism Society of America, one out of every 150 children born in the United States will be diagnosed, and boys are four times more likely than girls to have autism.
Approximately 1.5 million Americans are currently living with autism, a disability that generally surfaces during the first three years of a person’s life. It is a neurological disorder that affects the areas controlling social development and communication skills.
Symptoms in autistic children and adults include problems and delays with verbal and non-verbal communication and repetitive or aggressive social behavior.
Many theories exist about what causes autism but scans comparing the brains of autistic people with non-autistic people reveal a noticeable difference in structure and shape. Genetics and heredity could play a role. Viral infections or exposure to toxins and metals may cause immune dysfunction among those who may be genetically vulnerable. Metabolic imbalances are another possible cause. Recently, thousands of families filed suit against the manufacturers of vaccines and a mercury-based preservative, thimerosal, which they blame for the development of autism in their children.
As more and more people are diagnosed with autism (at a rate of 10 to 17 percent more cases annually), the lack of effective treatments provided by the medical establishment has led to an increased interest in alternative treatments.
Vitamin B6: Several studies indicate that, when taken with magnesium, B6 improved the symptoms of 50 percent of children and adults who took it daily. Results were noted in as little as a few days.
Sulphur: Sulfates help the body turn waste into water-soluble byproducts that can then be excreted, thereby cleansing and detoxifying the system. This detoxification process is believed to rid the body of toxins that may cause autism.
Dimethylglycine (DMG): This nutrient strengthens the immune system, which may be weakened in autistic individuals. In one study, participants experienced a significant decrease in behavioral problems.
Vitamin C: Linus Pauling, the Nobel Prize-winner and noted Vitamin C expert, is an advocate of high doses of this antioxidant, which has been shown to improve symptoms.
Autism is definitely a difficult disorder to deal with. And as it becomes more prevalent with each passing year, it’s important to become more aware of autism – both from a parenting perspective as well as a societal outlook.