Autism

Autism and Cannabis Oil Treatment

Autism spectrum disorder is a very serious neurodevelopmental disorder that damages a child’s ability to interact and communicate with others. It also includes limited repetitive behaviours, activities, and interests. These issues cause momentous impairment in social, occupational and further areas of functioning.

Autism spectrum disorder is defined as a single disorder that comprises disorders that were previously considered detached — autism, Asperger’s syndrome, pervasive developmental disorder and childhood disintegrative disorder not otherwise specified.

Causes

Autism spectrum disorder has no individual known cause. Given the complexity of ASD, and the fact that symptoms and severity differ, there are probably multiple causes. Both genetics and environment can play a role.

  • Genetic problems. Many different genes seem to be involved in ASD. For some children, ASD can be associated with a genetic disorder, such as fragile X syndrome or Rett syndrome. For others, genetic changes can make a child more susceptible to ASD or create environmental risk factors. Still other genes can possibly affect brain development or the way that the brain cells communicate, or they may regulate the severity of symptoms. Some genetic problems appear to be inherited, while others happen impulsively.
  • Environmental factors. Currently researchers are exploring whether factors like viral infections, air pollutants, or complications during pregnancy play a role in activating ASD.

No link between vaccines and ASD

One of the greatest debates in ASD is cantered on whether there is a link between ASD and some childhood vaccines, particularly the measles-mumps-rubella vaccine. Despite extensive research, there have not been any reliable studies that has shown a link between the MMR vaccine and ASD.

Avoiding childhood vaccinations can put your child in danger of catching and as a result, spreading serious diseases, including whooping cough, mumps or measles.

Symptoms

Each child with Autism spectrum disorder is likely to have a unique pattern of behaviour and level of intensity — from low functioning to high functioning. Intensity is based on the restrictive and repetitive nature of behaviours and social communication impairments, along with how these affect the ability to function.

Because of the unique combination of symptoms shown in each child, intensity level can often be difficult to determine. However, within the range of symptoms, below are some of the common ASD behaviours and actions.

Social communication and interaction

  • Does not appear to understand simple questions or directions
  • Cannot start a conversation or keep one going, or may only start a conversation to make requests or label items
  • Fails to respond to his or her name or appears not to hear you at times
  • Does not express emotions or feelings and appears unaware of others’ feelings
  • Does not speak or has delayed speech, or may lose previous ability to say words or sentences
  • Inappropriately approaches a social interaction by being passive, aggressive or disruptive
  • Does not point at or bring objects to share interest
  • Has poor eye contact and lacks facial expression
  • May repeat words or phrases verbatim, but does not know how to use them
  • Resists holding and cuddling and seems to prefer playing by self — retreats into his or her own world
  • Speaks with an abnormal tone or rhythm — may use a singsong voice or robot-like speech

Patterns of behaviour

  • Does not engage in imitative or make-believe play
  • Has problems with coordination or has strange movement patterns, such as walking on toes or clumsiness, and has strange, stiff or exaggerated body language
  • Develops specific routines or rituals and becomes disturbed at the slightest change
  • May be fascinated by details of an object, like the spinning wheels of a toy car, but does not
  • understand the “big picture” of the subject
  • May be uncooperative or resistant to change
  • May be unusually sensitive to sound, light, and touch, and yet oblivious to pain
  • May have odd food preferences, such as eating only a few foods, or eating only foods with a certain texture
  • Moves constantly
  • Performs repetitive movements, such as spinning, rocking, or hand-flapping, or may perform activities that could cause them harm, such as head-banging
  • May become fixated on an activity or object with abnormal intensity or focus.