by Marshaneil Soumi D’ Rozario | 14 APR 2018
The World Autism Awareness Day, witnessed on 2nd April tries to uplift the predicaments associated with people suffering from autism in their daily life. The issue on ‘autism’ is globally recognized and an active initiatives are taken to improve its understanding amongst people. An early detection is necessary to meet with their regular demands. It enables the parents to equip themselves with necessary tools to accept them with a lot of warmth and love. Ms. Nethra Balasubramaniam, Counselling Psychologist - Fortis Malar Hospital, Chennai shares her views regarding World Autism Awareness Day .
What is Autism?
Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is a group of developmental condition that specifies impairment in social communication and interaction could be manifested as deficits in social reciprocity, deficits in using non verbal communication for social interaction and Deficits in developing, maintaining, and understanding relationships. (Eg: failure to have normal back and forth conversation, abnormality in eye contact and body language, difficulties in adjusting behaviour to suit different social context ), Restricted and repetitive patterns of behaviour, interests, or activities (eg: following greeting rituals, strong attachment to or preoccupation with unusual objects, Repeating words or phrases that they hear).
Symptoms of ASD could be evident from 18 months. ASD could vary in its severity [from level 1 (Requiring support), Level 2 (Requiring substantial support) and level 3 (Requiring very substantial support)] based on social communication impairments and restricted repetitive patterns of behaviour.
What are various conditions leading to Autism?
ASD results from genetic, neurobiological and environmental factors that is observable through behavioural factors. There are some environmental factors like pre- and post-natal environmental factors (e.g., dietary factors, exposure to drugs and environmental toxicants)that might interact with genetic susceptibility to ASD.
Can you prevent Autism?
There is no conclusive evidence that autism can be prevented. But few articles advocated limited exposure to environmental factors that might interact with genetic susceptibility to ASD during pregnancy.
What are recent researches made on Autism?
The results of the research were used to build a sequential intervention model to most likely to reduce vocal stereotypy while producing desired collateral outcomes.
Editor's info: Effects of multiple interventions for reducing vocal stereotypy: Developing a sequential intervention model
Marc J. Lanovaz | John T. Rapp | Isabella Maciw | Émilie Prégent-Pelletier | Catherine Dorion | Stéphanie Ferguson | Sabine Saade
Study investigated the effects of embedded, computer-assisted explicit instruction to teach science terms and application of those terms to three middle school students with autism and intellectual disability.
Editor's info: Using embedded computer-assisted explicit instruction to teach science to students with autism spectrum disorder
Volume 7, Issue 3, January 2013, Pages 433-443
Bethany R. Smith | Fred Spooner | Charles L. Wood
This paper provides a systematic review of 24 studies that addressed the characteristics of friendship in school-age children with a diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder (ASD). The results of this review indicate important differences in the manifestation of friendships in individuals with ASD as compared to typical children.
Editor's info: The nature of friendship in children with autism spectrum disorders: A systematic review
Volume 8, Issue 2, February 2014, Pages 111-126
Neysa Petrina | Mark Carter | Jennifer Stephenson
The study was designed to examine the effectiveness of CBT interventions for adults with ASD and psychiatric co-morbidity. the data suggested that CBT interventions - including behavioural, cognitive, and mindfulness-based techniques - were moderately effective treatments for co-morbid anxiety and depression symptoms.
Editor's info: Cognitive behaviour therapy for adults with autism spectrum disorders and psychiatric co-morbidity: A review
Volume 9, Issue , January 2015, Pages 151-162
Debbie Spain | Jacqueline Sin | Trudie Chalder | Declan Murphy | Francesca Happé
Can you give general statistics of people suffering from autism in India?
Data released from the CDC in April 2014 placed the prevalence of autism in the U.S. at approximately 1 in 68 children. No data are available from India to provide an India-specific estimate of the prevalence, and it is unknown whether there are variations in this rate worldwide. Of note, however, is a study conducted in South Korea that found a prevalence rate of 1 in 38. While the disorder is not rare, a multitude of people with autism in India have not been diagnosed and -- more critically -- do not receive the services they need. This problem occurs in many countries, but is especially true in India where there is a tremendous lack of awareness and misunderstanding about autism among the medical professionals, who may either misdiagnose or under diagnose the condition.
Advice on autism day?
Spreading awareness on autism is essential, as it would help the caregivers to detect early signs and symptoms. Early detection would help in ensuring development of better management plan for ASD. In my opinion, there should be more widespread Awareness campaign on this mental health issue, to reduce the stigma attached to the people dealing with ASD. If the caregivers notice any developmental delays it is always good to get it checked from the physician rather than postponing it thinking that it would eventually happen. The mental health of caregivers of children/adults with ASD are often ignored. So i would like to bring it to notice that there are support groups available for caregivers of ASD which would help them cope better with the situation. Though ASD is a non preventable mental health issue, it is important to know that through therapies like art therapy, ABA therapy, Play therapy, behavioural improvements/management is possible.
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