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Overcoming Autism in an Extraordinary Child
Homeopathy is one of the most effective and safe medicines for kids with autism. Besides strengthening her immune system and preventing her ear infections, it will also improve her speech and will make her feel more confident and less stressed in situations of interpersonal communication. Dealing with stress in a better way helps to improve her nervous system and will reduce both the frequency and intensity of her meltdowns.
History of Autism
The term autism came about decades before the disorder was recognized. It was coined by Swiss psychiatrist Eugen Bleuler in 1910. The word autism was derived from the Greek word Autós meaning self. It means a child may become self-centered in situations of strong external stress.
Autism Simply Explained
Autism is a complex neurological disbalance. It is usually identified during early childhood (aged 2-6 years). Children with autism have difficulty communicating and forming relationships.
The structure of the human brain and it's physiology are very complicated. The brain contains more than 100 billion neurons (nerve cells). Each neuron releases special chemicals called neurotransmitters. Neurotransmitters are vitally important to maintain proper relay of connections between various neurons. That's how we experience emotions, feel, remember and communicate with others. Since children with autism often have abnormalities in their neurotransmitter systems, it is hard for them to talk, feel, understand, listen, play, and communicate.
Causes of Autism
Scientists and researchers haven’t found the actual cause of autism. They think that genetics might play a big role in triggering autism. However, many kids are affected by autism even if it does not run in their family.
According to Natasha Campbell-McBride, MD, one of the triggers of autism could be maternal dysbiosis. During childbirth, beneficial bacteria is passed from mother to child. This bacteria serves as the building blocks of both the digestive and the immune system. A link has been observed between an imbalance in gut flora in mothers and the presence of autism in children.
Is it Pandemic?
When I finished medical school in 1985 cases of autism were much less prevalent. Lately, I have noticed in my practice that a constantly growing number of children are being diagnosed with autism. Autism rates have been rising in Canada. An estimated 190,000 Canadian children have the disorder. The rate of autism has increased from 40 cases per 10,000 to 60 cases.
I think it is a combination of many different factors with the main one being stress. Therefore, it is crucial for a mother not only to maintain physical well being but emotional health as well, during the pregnancy and post pregnancy.
Although many children are being diagnosed with autism, a significant number of children who in fact are suffering from this disorder are not diagnosed or are not diagnosed early enough. The longer the diagnosis of an autistic child is postponed, the more difficult the treatment process becomes.
Tips for parents
The best thing you can do is to start treatment right away! Ask for help as soon as you feel something is wrong. Do not wait to see if your child will catch up later with his speech or motor skills or outgrow the problem. Early intervention is the most effective way to speed up your child's development and reduce the symptoms of autism. Remember, you are not alone! There are many places that you can turn to for advice, a helping hand, advocacy, and support such as the Autism Family Support Group.
How to Recognize Autism
Early detection is very important for a successful treatment process. In most cases symptoms begin to develop slowly making it difficult to recognize primary signs before the age of two. In other cases, a child may be developing accordingly but may all of sudden regress and forget skills they once knew, for example, talking and communicating with others. Early signs in children include difficulty keeping eye contact. In many cases kids might look at their parents or siblings for a second and then quickly turn away, or not look at all. However, this is often easily misinterpreted as shyness. Another sign is the constant repetition of one act. A little girl from my practice had the ritual of lining up all her bath toys before going to sleep. The disruption of this line by her mom or another family member will cause her to destroy the whole line and organize the toys in linear formation all over again. Other signs are repetitive body motions or preforming unusual actions, like spinning in circles or not talking. Some children with autism also like to play and spend time alone. These children are not interested in making friends or interacting with peers. Uncontrollable laughter or tantrum without apparent reason are other signs.
The signs in infants are more subtle. Aversion to being held in one`s arms or having close physical contact may be an early indicator. Another sign is a repetitive way of moving arms, hands or feet. Oversensitivity to smells, textures, touch or to loud sounds, such as sirens are other signs.
In many cases children with autism can be more sensitive to certain foods. In my practice I have noticed many children feel much worse after eating foods that contain gluten and casein. Kids might feel more spaced out and/or experience stomachaches. Gluten containing foods are wheat, rye, and barley. Casein containing foods are milk, cheese, and other dairy products.
From my experience working with many kids with autism, I have learned that both a strong digestive system and a balanced diet plan play a very important role in treatment. When our bodies produce enough beneficial bacteria (flora), it helps children not only fight colds and the flu easier but also improves their brain function.
Reduce Tantrums in Children With Autism
Some children with autism have uncontrollable tantrums. This happens for many reasons. From my experience the most common reasons are when a child feels misunderstood and when changes in activities and surrounding environments happen suddenly. It is crucial for parents of autistic children to be understanding of their child's behaviour and the reason for their tantrums. The ability to understand and communicate with your child in ways which are comfortable for them will make it that much easier to avoid temper tantrums all together. Also, the emotional state of the parents directly affects the child hence, I have noticed when parents are less stressed the child too feels more at ease. Homeopathic remedies can also help redirect a mom’s or dad’s negative energy, creating a more positive and stress free environment for the child.
Gut and Psychology Syndrome by Dr Natasha Campbell-McBride is about natural treatment for autism and other disorders. Impossible Cure: The Promise of Homeopathy by Amy Lansky is about the incredible story of how she used homeopathy to cure her son of autism. Ritalin Free Kids by Robert Ullman, ND, DHANP and Judyth Reichenberg-Ullman is about safe, effective, and natural treatment for children with autism.
There are several ways to manage and treat kids with autism. From many of my patients` experiences, therapies such as speech therapy, behaviour therapy, yoga, massage, physiotherapy, feldenkrais therapy, touch therapy and music therapy all help to strengthen social communication and motor skills. But, the most important way to manage autism is a well balanced diet and homeopathic medicine.
Homeopathic medicine has a holistic and very individual approach making every patient`s case unique. It addresses a person in totality of his mental, emotional, spiritual and physical spheres, as well as genetic weaknesses. That is why it can truly restore a person's complete being and improve his or her life. I strongly believe that a warm and loving relationship amongst all family members in combination with homeopathic medicine and other therapies will help in the blossoming of your child's personality and his or her undiscovered talents.
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