What Is Autism all about?

Source: Verdict

The world Autism Awareness Day is on 2 April which is today, and this date was first recognized by the United Nations in 2008 by Sheikha Mozah Bint Nasser Al-Missned.

WHAT IS AUTISM?

A social communication disorder which impacts the nervous system and refers to a range of condition characterized by challenges with social skills, repetitive behaviors, speech and nonverbal communication, difficulty with social interactions is known as Autism and is essentially recognized in an autistic person. It is said that they lack Theory of Mind which means realizing that people think differently and will also be very sensory.

CAUSES

Experts haven’t yet discovered one single cause of autism. Environmental and genetic factors make it more likely for an individual to be diagnosed with autism.

In some cases, the autistic behavior is caused by:

·         Rubella (German measles) in mother during pregnancy

·         Tuberous sclerosis (a rare genetic disorder that causes benign tumors to grow in the brain and in other vital organs)

·         Fragile X syndrome ( it’s the most common inherited form of civilized disability)

·         Encephalitis (brain inflammation)

·         Untreated phenylketonuria (PKU) – for normal metabolism the body lacks the required enzyme

 Symptoms

·         Social challenges

·         Communication Difficulties

·         Repetitive Behaviours

·         Associated Medical Condition

·         Genetic Disorders

·         Gastrointestinal (GI) Disorders

·         Seizure Disorders

·         Sleep Dysfunction

·         Sensory Processing Problems

·         Pica- A tendency to eat things that are not food.

 

TREATMENT

  • Behavioral training and management- Behavioral treatments have been developed like Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA), Treatment and Education of Autistic and Related Communication Handicapped Children (TEACCH), and sensory integration. These treatment uses positive reinforcement, self-help, and social skills to improve behavior and communication.
  • Specialised therapies- This treatment includes speech, occupational, and physical health. Speech therapy helps an autistic child to improve language and social skills so that they can communicate more effectively. Occupational and physical therapy helps to improve any deficiencies in coordination and motor skills. 
  • Medicines-Medicines are a way for treatment of behavioral problems like depression, anxiety, hyperactivity, and obsessive-compulsive behaviors.
  • Community support and parent training- Talk to your doctor about support and training. It is treated by staying on a routine, including a set bedtime and time to wake up. A Doctor may try medicines as a last resort

 

Why is autism awareness important?

The World Health Organisation’s research shows that autism may limit an individual’s ability to participate in society. Hence raising an awareness can help and educate people on how to better integrate autistic people into our society.

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