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4 Recent Studies That Have Surfaced In Management of Autism

Autistic Spectrum Disorders or ASD are developmental disorders that start in young children and last a lifetime. These disorders vary from case to case and as of now there is no known cure to completely remove the symptoms that are associated with them. The symptoms can include social anxieties and problems interacting with peers or facing crowds of people or any social situations at all. Some children and adults suffering from ASD may have difficulties with language and forming words, expressing themselves verbally or simply dislike the concept of starting or continuing conversations. If you believe your child may be affected by ASD or know for certain that they have a disorder affiliated with ASD don’t despair.

Many people with autism go on to lead happy healthy lives; they just tend to lead those lives a little bit differently than you. Speaking to your family doctor or a specialist can help you understand more about the needs that your growing child may have in regards to their condition and what you can do to help them evolve as a person despite any obstacles they may face. Over the years there have been many different trials and programs initiated in the hopes of containing a single reason and cure for ASDs, but as mentioned above, the results have been inconclusive and no medications have been found to stifle effects of the disorder. Below are a few different studies that have been compiled in recent times throughout the medical community regarding treatments and management of autism in its different forms.

Behavioral Analysis Applications

Due to the fact that ASDs tend to alter ones behavior in comparison to how somebody without an autistic disorder would react, there has been a lot of work done in the area of behavioral analysis and what can be done to change the way that autistic children react to certain stimuli or situations. One such application uses the method of modifying behavior by praising and rewarding appropriate behavior while discouraging negative behavior. Dr Ananya Mandal, MD of news-medical.net, expresses: “Every task completed is rewarded and reinforced in a positive way and inappropriate behaviour as discouraged and redirected.” Normally this type of application is performed and monitored at home with the help of a few different therapists so that safety is always the number one concern of the patient. This is a form of educational modification and previous trials have gone on for a number of years, running forty or more hours a week. It is generally only performed with very young children between the ages of three and five as they tend to have an easier time learning new behaviors than older children do.

Oxytocin in Nose Spray

As with any medical treatments involved in the handling of ASDs there’s no real proof that any one medicine can help the disorder, and as each disorder differs from person to person it can be difficult to apply the tests necessary to gather this kind of information. However, there are still tests completed by some medical teams, and the search for an overall cure is hopeful. One treatment that has recently made waves in medical news is the reaction of Oxytocin on the brain. Marie Ellis of Medical News Today explained the following in regards to testing led by Ilanit Gordon of Yale University with a placebo-controlled experiment on 17 different children with ASDs: “The team found that, compared with the placebo group, the participants who received a single nasal dose of oxytocin experienced enhanced activity in the brain.” They found that the oxytocin found in these nasal sprays did make a difference in the social region of the brain and how children reacted to each other under its influence. This is a huge leap in the study of ASDs, but it’s important to remember that this kind of testing is done under medical care and you should never try things like this at home with your children or family without strict orders and supervision from an attending physician. Many treatments that involve medicine or dietary changes can be dangerous when not properly monitored or utilized.

Sensory Therapy

This therapy really speaks for itself, but it does seem to make a difference in the lives of those suffering from autism in that they are better equipped to handle every day interactions with their senses. Certain forms of these disorders cause discomfort in bright loud, around loud sounds, or by being touched at all, so it’s a big deal to see changes in children who undergo this type of therapy. Amy Norton of medicinenet.com writes: “The therapy is called sensory integration. It uses play to help these kids feel more at ease with everything from water hitting the skin in the shower to the sounds of household appliances.” Parents involved with this study have said that their children have become more open to self-care and have shown some independence in coping with their conditions.

Tablet Tools

It was previously understood that children affected by autism might never acquire full verbal skills if they hadn’t already begun to develop some by the age of five or six, but recent research has blown these assumptions out of the water by supplying new information regarding the use of tablets for language learning in young children. Information provided by Vanderbilt University to sciencedaily.com states: “New research indicates that children with autism who are minimally verbal can learn to speak later than previously thought, and iPads are playing an increasing role in making that happen, according to Ann Kaiser, a researcher at Vanderbilt Peabody College of education and human development.” This kind of therapy works similarly to other phonetic learning tools in that children can push buttons and listen to sounds, read words, see and hear different spelling of words, and find an overall better understanding of their language. There are different games that can be played and the visual stimulation combined with the hearing and physical touching of the tablet goes a long way to supply children with ASD conditions with the ability to cope with some of their difficulties where language is concerned.

 

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