Autism Archives - Page 5 of 5 - Autism Awareness
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Autism

It’s true that almost every blog post could fit into this category, but we try to keep it mostly to those blog posts and articles that specifically reference autism itself. News, research, any articles that talk specifically about autism, rather than a related disorder, or behaviour.

A Review of Autism Treatments

Last week in the Globe and Mail, there was an article about the effectiveness of autism treatments over the past decade. Two of the findings published in the journal Pediatrics that stood out to me were:

  1. Intensive behavioural and developmental therapy results in improved cognitive performance, language skills and behaviour in some young children, but few studies in this area were rated of good enough quality to single out specific approaches.
  2. There is little evidence of benefit for most medications used to treat ASD.

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Nova Scotia’s Autism Through the Lifespan Report

The Nova Scotia Government formed an advisory committee to help it improve services to those affected by Autism Spectrum Disorder. The Autism Management Advisory Team (AMAT) included representatives from local autism organizations such as the Provincial Autism Centre, Autism Society Nova Scotia, Autism Society of Cape Breton, AnnapolisValley Autism Support Team, and three government departments: Education, Community Services and Health.

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The Death of A Myth: Dr. Wakefield and the MMR-Autism Link

On Thursday, January 6th, the Globe and Mail ran an article about one of the great research frauds in recent history – Dr. Andrew Wakefield’s study that developed a probable link between the MMR vaccine as a cause of autism. Dr. Wakefield first published his findings in The Lancet on Feb. 28, 1998. He wanted the MMR vaccine replaced by three separate shots, then strangely enough he patented his own measles vaccine to replace the MMR one.

In 2004 a British journalist from The Sunday Times, Brian Deer, published evidence of Dr. Wakfield’s ties to the MMR lawsuit launched by a group against the vaccine. He was on their payroll and his research was going to be the centerpiece of the group’s claim. The children in the lawsuit were recruited unethically and there were other flaws in Wakefield’s study. For years, scientists have been trying to reproduce his findings but none have ever found a link between autism and the MMR vaccine.

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Quest for Autism Services

Parents are in a constant quest for services, no matter what the age of their child with ASD. The need for services changes with both age and circumstances. What services for people on the autism spectrum are out there and how are they accessed?

Recently Diagnosed

If you are a parent who has recently received a diagnosis, finding services can seem like a maze. A good place to start is to visit your provincial government website and look under Child and Family Services. This will be called different things in different provinces, but most governments use a similar title. The government will list how to obtain funding, what programs are offered or subsidized, and what government policy is on assisting families with a disability.

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Autism and Vulnerability

We just returned from our annual conference in Birmingham, UK. This year’s topic of autism and vulnerability was one not tackled in our previous conferences. The speaker, Marc Serruys, gave an excellent and informative talk on the subject and what it is that makes this population so vulnerable.

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An Autism Epidemic: What a Wonderful Thing

“Worldwide Autism Epidemic!” screams the headline. I wish it were true. If we were in the midst of an epidemic of autism, then something, or someone, would be to blame, and with a bit of sleuthing we could eliminate the problem, and prevent even more children from suffering. And, if the epidemic were man-made, we could punish the guilty. Alas, there is precious little scientific evidence to support the notion of an autism epidemic.

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The Death of James Delorey, Child with Autism

Our autism community was in the headlines again last week over the tragic death of James Delorey in Cape Breton, Nova Scotia. James, a non-verbal 7 year old with autism, ran from his house into the woods to chase the family dog. He was miraculously found alive 2 days later but had severe hypothermia from being out in the winter weather with no proper winter clothing on. He died the following day.

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Introducing Autism to Elementary Students

I went to my daughter Julia’s grade 4 class last week to give a presentation about autism. My main goal was to give the students a basic understanding of what autism is, what the strengths and difficulties are, and how they can be a friend to Julia.

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“Autistic Diet” getting a closer look

Wheat-, dairy-free plan proving successful for some
When he was 3 years old, Matthew Sebastian was diagnosed with autism. Four years later, he began having seizures, which are much more common in autistic children than in the broader population.

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In Autism, Hope at Any Age

What does last month’s news from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention — that autism incidence is now 1 in 150– mean to me, a mother of a 17-year-old severely autistic boy?

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