What is Autism ?
Autism, is a Neurodevelopment Disorder, Characterised by challenges with social communication, and by restricted and repetitive behaviours. Autism affects information processing (which delays language processing in most cases) in the brain which causes many autistic children with learning and reading difficulties.
AUTISM Facts and Figures Based on WHO Report, It is estimated that worldwide about one in 100 children has autism which translated to a number higher than 79 Million. This estimate represents an average figure while Some well-controlled studies have, however, reported figures that are substantially higher. In the 2000s, the number of autistic people worldwide was estimated at 1–2 per 1,000 people. It is diagnosed four to five times more often in males than females. The number of people diagnosed has increased considerably since the 1990s, which may be partly due to increased recognition of the condition
Autism spectrum disorders (ASD), are a diverse group of conditions. They are characterised by some degree of difficulty with social interaction and communication. Other characteristics are atypical patterns of activities and behaviours, such as difficulty with transition from one activity to another, a focus on details and unusual reactions to sensations.
The abilities and needs of autistic people vary and can evolve over time. While some people with autism can live independently, others have severe disabilities and require life-long care and support. Autism often has an impact on education and employment opportunities. In addition, the demands on families providing care and support can be significant. Societal attitudes and the level of support provided by local and national authorities are important factor.
Understanding the Autism Spectrum with Dr. Shirin Alonzo | San Diego Health. Dr. Shirin discusses the following on Autism
- What is autism?
- Autism Spectrum Disorder
- What are the symptoms of Autism Spectrum Disorder?
- At what age is the onset of autism?
- How is autism diagnosed?
- Can autism symptoms change over time?
- Outgrowing autism
- How does autism affect you as an adult?
- Autism Causes
- Some common misconceptions about autism
- Can diet affect symptoms of autism?
- If you suspect your child has autism, who should you go see?
- Is autism a mental illness?
- Treatment for autism
- If you have autism, how can you be your own advocate?
- If your child has autism, how can you be their advocate? How vocal should you be with your employer, teachers and more?
- Do children with autism need a special education program?
- At what age can you get an individual education plan (IEP)?
Highest AUTISM Spectrum Disorder Rate in 2022 – Top 22 Countries
Top 5 Counties with highest AUTISM Spectrum Disorder Rate (Per 10K Population) are Qatar, UAE, Oman, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait. India Stands at Number 22 in the list. Conclusion: Middle Easter Nations have the highest Autism Prevalence Rate (Per 10K)
Least AUTISM Spectrum Disorder Rate in 2022 – Top 15 Countries
Top 5 Counties with Lowest AUTISM Spectrum Disorder Rate (Per 10K Population) are France, Portugal, Iceland, Norway and Italy. It seems European Nations have lower Autism Rates as compared to Asian or North America. Conclusion: European Nations have the lowest Autism Prevalence Rate (Per 10K)
Autism: A view from neuroscience – A CCN public lecture
AUTISM Early Signs
As the research, experiences and studies indicate Autism impacts an individual throughout the lifespan. As per Autism Society USA, here are some common signs to look for:
- Speaks later than typical or not at all (nonverbal).
- Repetition in language or movement, such as repeating the same word or sounds, hand flapping, or any repeated movement.
- Atypical nonverbal communication, including avoiding eye contact, giving few facial expressions, or having a monotone.
- Prefers solitary or parallel play rather than engaging in associative or cooperative play with other children.
- Extremely distressed by changes, including new foods or changes in schedule.
- Preference for predictable, structured play over spontaneous or make-believe play.
- Strong, persistent interest on specific topic, part of a toy, or item.
According to WebMD, About 40% of kids with autism spectrum disorders don’t talk at all, and between 25% and 30% develop some language skills during infancy but then lose them later. Some children with ASD start talking later in life.Most have some problems with communication, including:
- Delayed speech and language skills
- Flat, robotic speaking voice, or singsong voice
- Echolalia (repeating the same phrase over and over)
- Problems with pronouns (saying “you” instead of “I,” for example)
- Not using or rarely using common gestures (pointing or waving), and not responding to them
- Inability to stay on topic when talking or answering questions
- Not recognising sarcasm or joking
- Trouble expressing needs and emotions
- Not getting signals from body language, tone of voice, and expressions
Some Videos on Early Signs and Possible Symptoms of AUTISM
Nutrition and Autism
“Children with autism are often very sensitive to tastes and textures, and thus have limited diets.It may be the case that they are lacking specific nutrients important to learning and social/intellectual growth. While improved nutrition may be a helpful therapy, it seems unlikely that malnutrition can cause autism” – Verywellhealth.com
Do vaccines cause autism?
There is no proven connection or research that shows any correlation between vaccines and autism. Numerous studies have been done comparing autism rates between vaccinated and unvaccinated children. No difference has been found.One study from Japan looked at the MMR vaccine, which was withdrawn from the country due to concerns about aseptic meningitis. In that study, a statistically significant number of children were found to have developed autism even though they had not received the MMR vaccine.
“There is no known single cause for autism spectrum disorder, but it is generally accepted that it is caused by abnormalities in brain structure or function. Brain scans show differences in the shape and structure of the brain in children with autism compared to in neuro-typical children. Researchers do not know the exact cause of autism but are investigating a number of theories, including the links among heredity, genetics and medical problems”
“It also appears that some children are born with a susceptibility to autism, but researchers have not yet identified a single “trigger” that causes autism to develop. Other researchers are investigating the possibility that under certain conditions, a cluster of unstable genes may interfere with brain development, resulting in autism. Still other researchers are investigating problems during pregnancy or delivery as well as environmental factors such as viral infections, metabolic imbalances and exposure to chemicals.” – AUTISM SOCIETY USA”
Free Resources on the WEB and Apps
In this Free Autism Online Course for Audit (by University of Colarado on Coursera), you will about the most common developmental and behavioural disorders affecting children such as ADHD, autism spectrum disorder, learning disorders, and concussions. We will focus on how schools can support children by recognising common symptoms and understanding the diagnosis process.
You’ll be introduced to scenarios that provide firsthand clinician experience working with children with ADHD. You’ll experience an interview and answer dialogue with Dr. Abigail Angulo, a Developmental-Behavioral Pediatrician at the University of Colorado. You will be introduced to the deficits in children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Next, you’ll explore symptoms and diagnosis of ASD. Finally, you’ll review the cause and management of autism.
In this Free Autism Online Course for Audit (by University of Colarado on Coursera), the Course brief mentions that
” You will learn about how social-emotional skills, mental health, and learning are related. The Course will focus on how schools can support social-emotional learning and promote mental health for all students.We will walk through the reasons that schools should promote student mental health”
“Next, we’ll review school wide activities to support skill development and prevent social, emotional, and behavioural challenges. Then, we’ll identify strategies for students at risk of developing problems. Finally, we’ll highlight interventions that can be used for students who have significant mental health needs. We will emphasise the ways that schools think about mental health problems and provide services for students with disabilities, which is different than in medical or mental health settings”University of Colarado on Coursera
A common characteristic of students with autism is trouble communicating or connecting with their classmates. This Article Link discusses Social and Fun Skills Activities, Sensory Activities, Calming Activities to Prevent Autism Meltdowns in Class and Effective Teaching Strategies for Children with Autism.
This Article guide is meant to help autistic people (and their parents, family, friends, and caregivers) learn about online risks and how to mitigate them. But it also highlights the positives to show how autistic people can use and enjoy the internet confidently and safely. Read More Here
- ABA and VBA (Applied Behaviour Analysis and Verbal Behaviour)
- Relationship Development Intervention
- Sensory Integration Therapy
Some Links and Videos for Teaching Methods for Children with Autism
Autism At Home
It is a non-profit initiative by The Hope Project, the non-profit arm of Early Autism Project (EAP) Malaysia. Autism At Home is an online resource platform aimed at providing simplified tips and strategies to help families of children with autism teach and support their children at home.
This platform will provide you with online training videos on effective ABA teaching strategies for autism, featuring role plays, pop quizzes, and home assignments.
Teaching a Child with Autism using ABA (Applied Behaviour Analysis)
APPS on AUTISM
SPEECHBULLS: A speech learning app that helps kids over 12 months, including those with Down syndrome, articulation issues, or kids with Autism Spectrum Disorder.