The Institute for Vibrant Living natural health research dept. has prepared a report on the mysterious neurological condition known as autism. Here is their report:
Baffling. Exasperating. Overwhelming. Heartbreaking. Exhausting.
All of those adjectives have been used to describe autism, a developmental disorder that affects as many as one out of every 150 children in the US.
So what exactly is autism?
Autism is a lifelong disorder that causes abnormal neurological development and typically manifests itself by the age of 3.
According to the Autism Society of America, autism is a complex developmental disorder that affects social interaction and communication. As early as infancy, a child with autism may be unresponsive to people and focus intently on one item to the exclusion of others for long periods of time.
Many children with autism engage in repetitive movements such as rocking and twirling or in self-abusive behavior such as biting or head banging. For reasons that are still not understood, about 20 to 30 percent of children with autism develop epilepsy by the time they reach adulthood.
Children with autism also have a tremendous amount of social anxiety, which can make attending school very difficult.
Although the symptoms will differ from child to child, the following are some of the most common traits of autism:
Does not socially interact well with others, including parents
Shows a lack of interest in, or rejection of physical contact
Avoids making eye contact with others, including parents
Fails to develop friends or interact with other children
Is delayed or does not develop language
Once language is developed, does not use language to communicate with others
Repeats same words or phrases over and over
Has repetitive motor movements, such as rocking and hand or finger flapping
Does not like noises
What causes autism?
Although experts disagree on the exact cause of the disorder, many researchers believe that it is somehow related to the measles, mumps, rubella vaccine (MMR). That is because many parents report that their children were developing normally until they received the vaccine.
A related theory suggests that the cause is mercury contamination of the vaccines, since many of these vaccines contain trace amounts of the dangerous heavy metal.
Still others suggest the cause is a deficiency in Magnesium, a critical facilitator of brain protection from toxic chemicals.
Because traditional medicine provides only limited treatment for autism, many parents turn to natural or alternative treatments.
What natural treatments exist for autism?
Although the average pediatrician may not be familiar with alternative treatments such as facilitated communication, secretin therapy, auditory integration training or nutritional supplements, they can usually provide you with the name of a doctor who is versed in these methods.
Aromatherapy is something any adult can administer. It is said to help awaken the senses and also relax autistic children.
Some holistic practitioners recommend giving the child a bath with invigorating oils in the morning (eucalyptus, bergamot, lemon, peppermint or rosemary). In the evening, oils such as chamomile, juniper, lavender, marjoram and sandalwood may help the child relax so that they can get a good night’s sleep.
Massage is another alternative therapy that may be helpful for autistic children.
Although many people with autism find light touching uncomfortable, they may enjoy the deep pressure of massage. Massage has been shown to decrease self-injury and other challenging behaviors in people with autism.
There are several supplements that holistic practitioners sometimes recommend for autistic children such as:
DMG (dimethylglycine, vitamin B-15)
Omega-3 fatty acids
Studies have shown that autistic children can benefit from a diet that is free from gluten and casein. In other words, autistic children should not eat wheat gluten or dairy products.
You might also experiment with removing corn and avoid food coloring additives as much as possible.
Are there health risks for autism caregivers?
It is common for parents with autistic children to become despondent. Parents and/or caregivers cannot give in to despair. They must try as hard as they can to be loving, accepting and sometimes even have the patience of Job!
Treating a child with autism is a group effort involving many professionals and non-professionals alike, as well as family and friends.
The world of autism is dynamic, so it is critical that parents and caregivers continue to educate themselves for the latest developments in autistic care.
And finally, by monitoring, maintaining and directing the goals of the “team” for the benefit of the autistic victim, they can receive the gift of understanding and caring that the autistic person so desperately needs.
David Flores is a natural health researcher for Institute for Vibrant Living, a top retailer specializing in all-natural supplements, vitamins, and minerals for many health and nutrition challenges. To learn more about the products offered by the Institute for Vibrant Living visit http://www.ivlproducts.com
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