Introducing a most common (child) mental disorder- “AUTISM”: Everybody must know
As we know! we can’t say simply looking at somebody what they’re dealing with inside. A simple example of this would be a Mental illness. Mental illness does not come in one single package. It leaves a huge legacy, not only for the person suffering it but also for those around them.
The illness includes many important health issues like personality disorder, depression, trauma, schizophrenia, eating disorders and addictive behaviors, etc. Autism spectrum disorder is the most crucial and severe disorder one of them.
Autism Spectrum Disorder Definition and Types:
The term “spectrum” in autism spectrum disorder specifies to a group of symptoms and severity whereas autism defines a brain biological disorder.
To sum up, Autism or Autism spectrum disorder is a serious mental condition, present during early infancy or the early stage of development or growth. It relates to the development of the brain or central nervous system that affects emotions, memory, learning ability and self-control. It may be symbolized, in a huge variant, such as difficulties in social interaction, some level of disability and repetitive or restricted patterns of behavior.
Unfortunately, ASD has no cure but speech and language therapy, educational support, or some other interventions are available to help children and parents.
Autism spectrum disorder causes:
In most cases, the exact cause of ASD is still unclear. From the analysis, a faulty or imperfect gene might cause to have autism. While some other unknown factors are also obtainable. For example, a chemical imbalance, a lack of oxygen at delivery, autistic behavior in the pregnant mother, babies born before 26 weeks, Genetics and some environmental factors.
Genetics- Most researchers believe that several different genes appear to be more accessible to developing ASD. For some children, ASD can be acquired from their parents or younger siblings. And for others, it may be an existing infrequent genetic syndrome, including Fragile X syndrome and Williams syndrome. Some genetic mutations seem to be transmissible, while others happen spontaneously.
Environmental factors– Similarly, studies support the concept that a few environmental factors such as viral infections, medications or complications during pregnancy, alcohol, or air pollutants may play a role in the initiation of autism spectrum disorder.
Meanwhile, all the evidence suggest that any of these like a vaccine preservative thimerosal, MMR vaccine(childhood vaccination), diet e.g. dairy products or gluten are not responsible for ASD.
Early signs of autism spectrum disorder:
Firstly, the basic symptoms of autism may widely vary in severity. Those form relatively mild challenges for someone on the body functioning when for others, symptoms may be more severe. Below are some signs showed by autism spectrum disorder patients.
Difficulties in Social interaction-
- Lack of expressions, emotions and eye contact
- Suddenly fails to respond or not to hear people
- Unable to recognize others expression, voice and body postures
- Frequently losses ability to speak continued words and sentence in everyday interaction
- Delays in language development or large vocabularies
- Doesn’t seem to understand simple directions or conversations
- Sometimes being immature, aggressive, or troubled for others
Repetitive behaviors or activities-
- Performs a restricted range of activities like rocking, jumping, hand-flapping, wiggling fingers in front of the eyes, arranging and rearranging objects.
- Self-harm activities such as head banging or biting.
- A tendency to eat some specific food or items called Pica.
- Demand extreme consistency in their surroundings hence, slight changes can be extremely irritating to them and head to outburst.
- Unusually annoyed by light, sound or touch, yet may be unconcerned with pain or temperature.
Physical and Medical Issues-
- Seizure disorder refers to uncontrolled electrical activity. These are hereditary.
- Sleep dysfunction changes the way of sleep. Common for children.
- Down’s syndrome, a genetic condition for learning and physical disabilities.
- Neurofibromatosis, a generic term that can reason tumors to grow along the nerves.
- Other mental health disorder like problems with a changeover to adulthood.
Autism spectrum disorder for the child:
Usually, ASD shows some signs of delayed development before age of 3 years. It is advisable to recommend your doctor if your child following symptoms associated with:
- By 6 months, Doesn’t react with a smile or happy expression
- Not mimicking sounds or facial expressions by 9 months
- By 14 months, doesn’t point or wave towards anything
- Can’t even say a single word by 16 months and two-word phrases by 24 months.
- Problems with successful learning in school while a child may have tremendous skills in art, music, numbers, symbols, or science topics.
Autism spectrum disorder therapy techniques: Basically, there is no cure available for autism. Although an early diagnosis and some therapies can maximize your child behavior or language development. For instance, medical consultation with a child psychiatrist or psychologist, pediatric neurologist, or developmental pediatrician would be beneficial. Some treatment options are also helpful. They are:
Behavior and communication therapies: Focus on teaching the human activity in social situations or communicate better with others. Applied behavior analysis (ABA) can also help.
Educational therapies: Team of specialists can help to improve social, communication and behavioral skill easily.
Family therapies: Parents and other members can learn the procedure of interaction with their children to manage problem behaviors.
Other therapies: Like speech therapy to improve communication skill. Occupational therapy to teach human activities and physical therapy to amend movement and balancing.
Medications: A psychologist can recommend ways to address difficulties in behavior. Certain medications may be prescribed to control severe behavioral problems when hyperactive.
In conclusion, an intensive and early treatment enhance the lives of many affected children. Though children with autism spectrum disorder typically continue to learn throughout the life to raise the functioning level. Even as most of them will continue to depend on some level of support. The early invention is probably helpful for all ages. At the same time, some medications and supplements can create dangerous side effects. An experienced health care professional can make this process smoother.