Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is a disability demonstrated by an
individualís social, communication and behavior difficulties. Individuals
within the Autism Spectrum Disorder have varying degrees of unique behaviors
from mild to severe. They might also demonstrate exceptional talents in certain
areas of knowledge such as Math, Music and others. Children with Autism will benefit
from daily behavioral, communication and functional supports. Autism signs vary
from each individual. A certain kind of behavior displayed by one as a reaction
to his/her environment may not draw the same reaction from another when
experiencing the same stimuli.
child does not make eye contact when spoken to
child takes oneís hand to reach for an item he/she wants
child avoids cuddling or physical affection by parents or
to play alone
unresponsive, hard of hearing, ignoring or deaf
not read facial and/or social cues from others
to the faintest sounds or stimulus but appears not to
hear the loudest crushing noise
not play with regular toys typical children play with
previously heard phrases or sentences or perseverates on
not readily accept changes in routine or environment
for awhile and loses speech or words later on
not feel changes in weather temperature; may expose skin to frost without
feeling discomfort or pain
unusual sounds or vocalizations
in self-injurious behaviors
in picking and chewing items from any surface
insists on eating the same food
or hypersensitive to touch, smell, hearing,
taste, sight, proprioception
People with Autism may or may already have many
health issues other than Autism itself. Tuberous sclerosis, diabetes and
complications, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, epilepsy,
pneumonia, muscle weakness, arthritis, eye diseases, cancer, sleep disorder,
anxiety, depression, gum diseases and obesity rate to be the most
prevalent health issues in adults with Autism.
There are no known cause or cure for Autism. Treatments vary according
to the needs of the child, the decisions of parents and the resources available
within the childís family and community. Early childhood intervention support
and services promote positive future outcome for the childís progress.
Children with Autism mature and grow old in a
typical life cycle as many people do. At this time and age of advancement in
science and technology, the life span of people are longer than it used to be.
With proper health management , treatment and healthy life style and when in
the care of compassionate people, a child with Autism reaches old age. But the
road to old age is not easy. There are obstacles to hurdle.
Health, psychological and social isolation are only a few of what we
go through life.
If we focus only on Autism as a communication,
social and behavioral challenge, we might lose sight of the child's health as a
whole. In order to take a balanced approach in our care of our children with
Autism, we must also pay close attention to the child's overall health
conditions. A regular check up by doctor, provision of nutritious,
wholesome meals, exercise and physical activities each week promote a holistic
health intervention. Regular flu shots could mean prevention of major illness.
Regular drinks of water each day promote proper digestion and detoxifying
process of the child's internal organs, hydrates the body, controls
calories and energizes the child in a positive, active way. Regular dental
visit helps prevent tooth decay and diseases arising from it.