Medical

Medical

Everything from how to deal with wrap around services for your child with autism, to how exercise and yoga benefits those with ASD. This section contains all the blog posts and articles pertaining to medical health, treatments and services for those with autism.

Receiving an Autism Diagnosis in the Teen Years

Many autistic children are diagnosed in early childhood, but for others their signs and symptoms do not become apparent until adolescence. If a teenager is capable and academically able, they may not receive a diagnosis as a young child. This can sometimes occur more often in girls than in boys because girls are generally more adept at copying neuro-typical behaviors,…

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Mealtimes, Eating Difficulties and the Autism Spectrum

Parents of autistic children often finding eating, feeding and mealtimes a struggle. If parents reach out for professional help, they may not be able to find it because of the limited number of specialists dealing with eating and feeding disorders; finding a specialist who understands and has experience with autism spectrum disorders can be even more difficult. Picky eating, food…

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Sweet Dreams – Autism and Sleep

Autistic individuals often have difficulty falling or staying asleep.  It is estimated that 40 to 83% of autistic individuals have some form of sleep disturbance. Autistic children are twice as likely to have sleep issues as typical children or children with other developmental conditions. Disordered sleep is also one of the first concerns reported by parents. As diverse as autism…

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What is monotropism?

Monotropism is a theory of autism which was first developed by autistics Dinah Murray and Wenn Lawson. Dinah and Wenn independently formulated the key ideas of monotropism, then later worked together for years developing, explaining and applying the theory. Their work has helped people to make sense of autism and how it manifests in themselves and others. There is an…

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How can we recognize depression in autistic individuals and find the support they need?

While depression is a mental health condition that can affect anyone, autistic individuals are 4 times more likely than the general population to experience depression. Research suggests that up to half of all autistic people will be depressed at some point in their lives. Depression should not be ignored and is treatable with the right support. If you or someone…

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Autism, Atypical Eating Behaviors and Eating Disorders

Atypical eating behaviors are common in autistic people. According to a study by Mayes & Zickgraf, 2019, 70.4% of autistic children have atypical eating behaviors as compared to 13.1% for other disorders and 4.8% for typical children. They found that only autistic children had pica or pocketed food. For 92% of autistic children, the most common preferred foods were grains…

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The Increase of Child and Youth Mental Health Issues Due to COVID-19

COVID-19 has touched every aspect of our lives – the workplace, home, leisure activities, health, social life, and the family unit. For children and youth, their childhood experience has been anything but typical with online schooling, lockdowns, school closures, loss of extracurricular activities and separation from friends and extended family members. School opportunities disappeared that can really make a difference…

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What is Trauma? A Simple Guide

This article was written by Aylish McFarlane, Studio 3 Assistant Psychologist. It was reprinted with permission from Studio 3 UK. ‘Trauma-informed practice’ is a phrase we hear more and more in our work, but what really is trauma, and how can we learn to recognize it? This simple guide illustrates how trauma can affect the body, and how to support…

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Caregivers and Increased Demands During the Pandemic

The pandemic has changed many aspects of our lives. Caregivers have had increasing demands and responsibilities placed on them because of lockdowns, program cancellations, difficulty retaining staff, illness and quarantines, new protocols and school closures. Community organizations have closed their doors to in-person meetings and have switched to online and phone support for their clients and members. Increased isolation has…

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How the Pandemic is Affecting Sleep

I am seeing a spike in questions in around sleep difficulties since the pandemic started. Some of these problems are new or some are a return to past sleeping difficulties. Rebecca Robillard, director of clinical sleep research at the Royal Ottawa Institute of Mental Health Research, published a new study on sleep changes during the COVID-19 pandemic. Dr. Robillard collected…

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What is anger rumination and how does it affect individuals with ASD?

Have you ever experienced challenging behavior like a meltdown, hostility, anger, or aggression when supporting a person with autism spectrum disorder (ASD)? Did the incident seem to come out of the blue? More than likely, there was a trigger that you didn’t notice or something that was building for a period of time. That “something” could be anger rumination. What…

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Constipation, Witholding and Overflow – A Deeper Dive into Bowel Problems for Autistic Individuals

The article that I wrote June 2019 on fecal smearing has generated a lot of mail and comments over the past year. When it comes to toileting difficulties, many challenges center around bowel movements and these 3 occurrences – constipation, withholding of the stool, and overflow. All three of these problems can be a cause of fecal smearing. Let’s have…

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The New “Normal”- ASD in the Post COVID-19 World

We are seeing out first glimmer of hope after weeks of bad and frightening news -the COVID-19 curve is flattening.  Our communities are going to reopen, albeit in stages and at different times and rates depending on regional data. It is exciting to be able to move about again, to have some shops open, and resume enjoyable activities. There are…

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