Behaviour disorder (Autism)
 


What this section contains?

Behaviour disorder (Autism)

What is Behaviour disorder (Autism)?

Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) refers to a group of complex neurodevelopment disorders characterized by repetitive and characteristic patterns of behavior and difficulties with social communication and interaction. The symptoms are present from early childhood and affect daily functioning.

Autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) are a group of developmental disabilities caused by a problem with the brain. The exact cause is not known. People with ASDs have serious impairments with social, emotional, and communication skills. ASDs can impact a person's functioning at different levels, from very mildly to severely. An ASD child will look like any other child. There is usually nothing about how a person with an ASD looks that sets them apart from other people, but they may communicate, interact, behave, and learn in ways that are different from most people. The thinking and learning abilities of people with ASDs can vary from gifted to severely challenged.

Cause

Maternal nutrition and inflammation during preconception and pregnancy influences fetal neurodevelopment. Intrauterine growth restriction is associated with Autism Spectrum Disorder(ASD), in both term and preterm infants. Maternal inflammatory and autoimmune diseases may damage fetal tissues, aggravating a genetic problem or damaging the nervous system.

Exposure to air pollution during pregnancy, especially heavy metals and particulates, may increase the risk of autism. Environmental factors that have been claimed without evidence to contribute to or exacerbate autism include certain foods, infectious diseases, solvents, PCBs, phthalates and phenols used in plastic products, pesticides, brominated flame retardants, alcohol, smoking, illicit drugs, vaccines, and prenatal stress. Some, such as the MMR vaccine, have been completely disproven.

Parents may first become aware of autistic symptoms in their child around the time of a routine vaccination. This has led to unsupported theories blaming vaccine "overload", a vaccine preservative, or the MMR vaccine for causing autism. The latter theory was supported by a litigation-funded study that has since been shown to have been "an elaborate fraud". Although these theories lack convincing scientific evidence and are biologically implausible, parental concern about a potential vaccine link with autism has led to lower rates of childhood immunizations, outbreaks of previously controlled childhood diseases in some countries, and the preventable deaths of several children.

Diagnosis & Tests

Several diagnostic instruments are available. Two are commonly used in autism research: the Autism Diagnostic Interview-Revised (ADI-R) is a semistructured parent interview, and the Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule (ADOS) uses observation and interaction with the child. The Childhood Autism Rating Scale (CARS) is used widely in clinical environments to assess severity of autism based on observation of children. The Diagnostic interview for social and communication disorders (DISCO) may also be used.

A pediatrician commonly performs a preliminary investigation by taking developmental history and physically examining the child. If warranted, diagnosis and evaluations are conducted with help from ASD specialists, observing and assessing cognitive, communication, family, and other factors using standardized tools, and taking into account any associated medical conditions. A pediatric neuropsychologist is often asked to assess behavior and cognitive skills, both to aid diagnosis and to help recommend educational interventions. A differential diagnosis for ASD at this stage might also consider intellectual disability, hearing impairment, and a specific language impairment such as Landau

Prevention & Risk Factors

Pregnant women should take extra care to prevent Autism in children. These precautions include:

  • Regular visits to doctor and checking on your medication - In order to prevent Autism, it is important to take your medical check ups and medications seriously during the course of your pregnancy. This will help you keep track of all the changes in your body and the baby

Treatments & Therapies

Early behavioral interventions or speech therapy can help children with autism gain self-care, social, and communication skills. Although there is no known cure, there have been cases of children who recovered.[22] Not many children with autism live independently after reaching adulthood, though some are successful. An autistic culture has developed, with some individuals seeking a cure and others believing autism should be accepted as a difference and not treated as a disorder.