Disease Trends in the News

The article that I read was from the Modesto, CA newspaper, The Modesto Bee. Even though the article is over a year old, written in October, 2009, the information it contains is still relevant to today. Carlson (2009) uses statistics from telephone surveys as well as information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to inform the readers of the increase in cases of Autism in southern California.This article shows a table of the varying degrees of Autism – Autistic disorder, Asperger’s syndrome, and Pervasive Developmental Disorder – and some of the characteristics of each “branch.”The link “More about Autism” brings up information about some early warning signs of Autism, various treatment methods, and a few statistics about the prevalence of Autism.

There are pictures of a child with Autism along with his mother, and they are using a therapy ball for deep pressure and the child is using a special chair to help him stay focused and on task. Any therapy that a child with Autism receives is considered beneficial. One-on-one therapies seem to have the most positive outcome.The only claim in regards to treatment for Autism is extensive therapy [physical, occupational, and speech]. Even with said extensive therapy, there is no cure, only the hope for a better quality of life for the individual with Autism. One definite benefit to all of the therapy is being able to help the child cope with their surroundings.

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If a child becomes over stimulated, it could send them into a rage-like tantrum where the child destroys things, throws objects, and can hurt themselves or others around them. . If the caregiver is able to recognize the trigger (usually over stimulation of one of the senses) that sets the autistic person off, they are better able to prevent major tantrums and melt-downs.On the national and global levels, the prevalence of Autism is on the rise. At one point just a few years ago, the rate was 1 in 166.

That was replaced with 1 in 150, and has now been updated to 1 in 100! Autism does not discriminate. There are both males and females of all races and ethnicities on the Spectrum.Currently, various genetic and heredity tests are being conducted to see if there is, indeed a genetic link to Autism. Autism is a part of my everyday life. It is a complex behavioral and social disorder that has robbed my son of his speech and emotional expression. With my son, there could be a genetic link to my father (both of my siblings have a child on the Spectrum, though not as severe as my son). Out of seven children, five boys and two girls, only the boys have shown signs of Autism or Asperger’s.

This information is interesting because it supports the findings of many studies that boys are affected more often than girls with Autism. While there is currently no cure for Autism or any one guaranteed treatment plan, there are numerous therapies and programs that allow those affected by Autism to lead good, fulfilling, quality lives.Some of the most popular therapies include physical, occupational, water (swimming), hippo (horse riding), and sensory integration. The last line in the article is a parent stating that they are hopeful that the cause for Autism will someday be identified. If a cause is found, then the quest for an effective treatment and possible prevention will ensue.Reference:Carlson, K.

(2009, October 16). A worrisome trend: Autism more prevalent than previously thought. The Modesto Bee. Retrieved from http://www.modbee.com/2009/10/16/895507/a-worrisome-trend-autism-more.html