Just about every scientific and governmental organization is now in agreement that there really is an Autism Epidemic in the USA. As pointed out elsewhere, if it were merely the case that the diagnosis is just more noticeable, then where are the 1/100 (now 1/68) autistic adults that should be walking around who went unnoticed?
Any experienced teacher will agree that the explosion of children who exhibit speech and language delay, social difficulties and repetitive or compulsive behaviors is a new phenomenon. I am a physician who has been following up on the medical outcomes of children who were at high risk from prematurity, severe illness, drug and alcohol abuse, complicated births and HIV exposure. It was at Early Steps in Broward County, FL, that I got to experience, first hand, this new disorder that we call Autism Spectrum.
By definition, epidemics in human beings are environmental (the flu, infectious diarrhea, radiation exposure, for example). People are not fruit flies, and our children did not genetically change in this century. In fact, I believe that it is just the opposite; that our fragile fetuses and newborns have the genetic background of 3 billion years during which time there haven’t been 85,000 man-made chemicals in the air, food and water. Simply put, our bodies cannot correctly eliminate offending agents and this results in our immune system going into overdrive.
Somehow, this affects susceptible individuals – males (definitely the less resilient sex), those with a family history of allergy or autoimmune disease, premature infants, siblings of children who already are affected. Rather than turning on the genes that create normal development, their bodies spend a great deal of energy on the toxic cleanup instead.
Why do so many conventional medical experts believe that autism cannot be cured? I’m sure that is because we are talking apples and oranges. The autism that was first described in the late 1930’s (as a psychiatric, not medical, condition) is simply NOT the same disorder that CAN be treated in today’s version. Today’s affected children do not ALL show total isolation, severe disruptive behaviors, lack of eye contact or an inability to develop.
More importantly, there are many who have the diagnosis of ASD today who suffer a multitude of gastro-intestinal symptoms which ARE amenable to effective, inexpensive and safe nutritional supplements such as probiotics and extra vitamins. Although improvement from special foods is a controversial issue, young children who demonstrate food sensitivities DO improve when offending agents are withheld from their diet. Many disruptive behaviors such as oppositional behavior and tantrums can be ameliorated by diagnosing and treating gut health in these individuals.
Additionally, when these simple interventions are combined with traditional therapies such as Speech & Language, Applied Behavioral Analysis, Occupational or Physical Therapy, the patient’s progress can become remarkable.
Regardless of what we call it, every child deserves early detection for this modern disorder so that early, safe, inexpensive and effective interventions are instituted in order to maximize an affected individual’s potential development.
And most probably back in the 1930s, there weren’t as many kids falling into the “regressive autism” category as there are today.
To anyone who will listen… Please help.
My name is Eriq Benel. I have a four year old son, Immanuel (Manny) who was diagnosed with autism at about two years old. Soon after, we discovered and learned at lot of things about autism and its cause. Manny was never immunized so we were able to rule that one out. We changed his diet. He has not had gluten or dairy or soy in the past year and a half. We have had him on numerous supplements, some were recommended to us by a consultant, and some by a nutrition DOCTOR who works with autistic children. It is breaking my heart to tell you that Manny is WORSE than he was two years ago. Here is why I say that. First, two years ago he some words and could repeat what I say. Now he has NO words at all. He is manifesting essentially the same behavior at four years old, as he did at two years old, which to me, means that he is WORSE doing the SAME thing at FOUR as he did at TWO. Manny is constantly sick. Cold and flu symptoms mainly. He doesn’t sleep well at night. He still has some stemming behavior, but will make good eye contact at times. We did some lab work, which revealed some intolerance he was having to certain foods (i guess) so we changed the food we were giving. The frustrating part is, this is the SECOND time we have done those labs and NOW he is having a reaction the foods that were okay before, and the foods he reacted to before are now okay. This is frustrating not really knowing how to feed him. Another lab indicated he had some sort of common parasite and he was given some supplements to address that issue. But there were never any follow up labs to see if the issue had improved or not. I suspect not because nothing has changed. NOTHING.
Our Doctor, who is a sincere and sweet man, has had some success with other children, but my son seems to not be a typical or easy case. I am POSITIVE he can be helped. And I KNOW there is a reason and caused to be found and treated, but the Doctor we work with now is either unwilling, incapable or lacks the knowledge to pursue the real problem. We have spent the last six months just “chasing symptoms”…. and even then, non of the symptoms really improve.
My desperate desire is to find some help. I feel so alone and helpless to save my son from this evil and horrible illness. Is there somebody who can help me? Please! I have limited resources but I will do anything.. devote all of my time… give all of my money… do whatever it takes until my last breath. Can somebody help me. Please.
Anytime day or night.
This is your reply? The link leads to nowhere. Please help me.
This is the clinician directory for ‘DAN’ doctors, under the new Medical Academy of Pediatric Special Needs organization.
You may need to click on Clinician Directory in the top right corner.