Autism Causes



Published theories on autism causes are fraught with controversy. Many seem based on relevant facts, some are hard to sort through, some border on ridiculous, and others are ridiculous.

In my opinion, if you are in the midst of caring for and parenting someone with autism, the cause is fairly irrelevant. Treatment and training should be the focus on how to assist the autistic person in being all that they can be. For those who want to explore the cause of autism, the most popular theories are summarized below. Pick the one you like best and then get busy concentrating on alternative training plans to assist them in finding their learning style and niche in life.

Parenting Aspergers

Autism and Vaccinations
There are two popular theories linking autism and vaccines. One theory suggests the MMR (Mumps-Measles-Rubella) vaccine causes intestinal problems which lead to the development of autism. The second theory suggests that thimerosal, a mercury-based preservative used in some vaccines, could be a contributor of the development of autism. Ryan messin' around
There are two popular theories linking autism and vaccines. One theory suggests the MMR (Mumps-Measles-Rubella) vaccine causes intestinal problems which lead to the development of autism. The second theory suggests that thimerosal, a mercury-based preservative used in some vaccines, could be a contributor of the development of autism.

In my son’s case this was the theory I chased for awhile. After his MMR shot, he developed chronic swollen tonsils. As a result of his swollen tonsils, his health and weight deteriorated. After having his tonsils removed, he was a different child. However, in retrospect, he had symptoms characteristic of Asperger's as an infant.

The CDC (Center for Disease Control) conducted studies which they claimed proved there was no connection between the vaccines and autism. Critics of the CDC findings were less inclined to accept the results when hearings surrounding the thimerosal issue were held in secret -- and individual researchers continued to raise concerns about the preservative's impact. In addition, a book by David Kirby called "Evidence of Harm" laid out a theory that implies a conspiracy within the federal health system.

The most recent research does not suggest a specific link between autism and vaccinations. See the CDC fact sheets on the MRR vaccine

and Thimerosal. As a parent, you will have many demands on you with an autistic child, chasing these theories will drain your energy and keep your thoughts along a negative vein instead of positive.

Genetics
A genetic predisposition to autism with environmental triggers is my personal favorite theory if we must dwell on causes. Maybe I like it because it takes all blame away from everyone. This puts autism in God’s hands so therefore, it must be a plan for some people to have these personality traits.

It is likely that autism has a genetic basis of some sort. Many studies have shown that parents from families with autistic members are more likely to have autistic children. It is also true that families with one autistic child are at increased risk of having more than one autistic child.

Immune Deficiency, Food Allergies, Poor Nutrition and more
A dysfunctional immune system has also been associated with autism causes. It is thought that a viral infection or an environmental toxin may be responsible for damaging the immune system. Researchers have found that many autistic individuals have a decreased number of helper t-cells which help the immune system fight infection.

There is a theory that allergies to certain foods contribute to autistic symptoms. Most people who hold to this theory feel that gluten (a wheat product) and cassein (a dairy product) are the most significant culprits. Explore the Autism Institute's website for more on this theory.

It seems unlikely that malnutrition or poor nutrition, is one of the autism causes. But megavitamin therapies have been used for many years to treat autistic symptoms. Dr. Bernard Rimland, of the Autism Institute, has been a leader in this area.

Atypical Brain Development
Some researchers have found physical differences between the autistic brain and the typical brain. Autistic individuals seem to have larger brains. Some studies have concluded the brain develops too quickly in autistic people beginning at about 12 months. By age ten, their brains are at a normal size, but "wired" atypically.

The theory is that with autism there's accelerated growth at a different time than when this development occurs in a majority of the people. The consequences, in terms of early development, include differences within the cortex. The cortex is the part of the brain which is responsible for higher brain functions, including sensation, voluntary muscle movement, thought, reasoning, and memory. The result may be that autistic people perceive things differently and may have less ability to block sensory input. So this doesn’t necessarily mean bad things, just different.

Bad Parenting
Being the mother of a child with high-functioning autism, the most irritating theory is that autism is caused by bad parenting. Sigmund Freud, the father of modern psychology, believed that almost all psychological issues stemmed from early childhood trauma. Autism was believed to be a form of mental illness, and so it was logical to assume that it was caused by early trauma. This theory has been proven wrong in many cases but continues to lurk in some areas.

So What are autism causes?

No one really knows for sure. There is another great site with more detailed explanations for
Being the mother of a child with high-functioning autism, the most irritating theory is that autism is caused by bad parenting. Sigmund Freud, the father of modern psychology, believed that almost all psychological issues stemmed from early childhood trauma. Autism was believed to be a form of mental illness, and so it was logical to assume that it was caused by early trauma. This theory has been proven wrong in many cases but continues to lurk in some areas.

So What are autism causes?

No one really knows for sure. The first thing most parents want to know is what are autism causes and how do we make it go away. Most experts will say that autism causes are a combination of genetic and environmental factors. This uncertainty is frustrating for parents and caregivers of autistic children. The good news is, there is increased interest in finding methods to help people with autism. Many autistic children can become self-sufficient, socially functioning adults with the proper treatment and training.

The sooner you realize you can’t ‘make it go away’ the sooner you can move on with acceptance and helping them find their niche. So lets stop spending any more time right now on autism causes and get on with the real focus,

autism treatments and training.

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