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The Very Misunderstood Disorder Essay

2024 words - 9 pages

Every parent hopes for a healthy, happy child. Children with developmental disabilities are not always those children. Autism is one of the most misunderstood developmental disorders to date. In the past twenty years, Autism has become more predominant in this world than almost any other disorder, an epidemic.

Autism is a very misunderstood disorder. Most children with autism look physically “normal.” Yet socially, behaviorally, and often developmentally, these individuals are lacking. There are many myths about autism. Not all these children are geniuses, they are not all mentally retarded, and they do have emotions (Kira, 3).
Because so many famous people, such as Beethoven and ...view middle of the document...

There are many theories about the causes of Autism. One is the “Refrigerator Mother” theory. This theory came about in the 1940’s by a Hungarian psychotherapist named Bruno Bettelheim (Kira, 8) Bettelheim’s theory basically stated that autism was the result of cold parents. The parents eventually pushed their children into mental isolation. Because of Bettelheim, Autism (for many years) was treated as a mental illness instead of a developmental disability (Kira,8). This theory was still accepted up until the early ‘90’s. It has since been proved wrong.
The main reason that Bettelheims theory is no longer accepted, is a man named Bernard Rimland (Kira, 9). Rimland was not only a psychologist, but the father of an autistic child himself. Rimland was one of the firsts to state that autism was a biological disorder (kira, 9). He founded the Autism Society of America, which is still around today. The ASA was the first parent driven autism support group.
The causes for Autism are still very much u in the air. Most scientists think that there are different causes for autism. There are a few things, however; that are known.
“There is some type of genetic predisposition to autism,” states Kira. The most important chromosome has been found to be 7q and may be passed along the mother’s side. The probability of autism affecting boys to girls is 3:1(Kira, 35).
Many children with autism have immune deficiencies. They are also finding that autistic patients have high levels of lead, antimony and aluminum in blood and hair samples (Kira, 36). This suggests that autistic children have trouble flushing toxins out of their bodies.
Another largely tested theory is the vaccination theory. Because the required amount of vaccinations has risen, and so has the number of cases of autism, it is only natural to look for a link between the two. Vaccines do not cause autism, or every child in the United States would be autistic (Kira, 37). However, the vaccines may be a trigger for children who are predisposed to Autism (Kira, 37). The main vaccine that is in question is the measles vaccine. Many children after getting the vaccine begin showing sings of late onset autism. California has reported a 273% rise in their autism cases in 10 years (Autism Research Institute). Many researchers, however; believe that the drastic increase is due to the environment (ARI). Because many of the vaccines that autistic children are given contain huge amounts of mercury(and as stated earlier, autistic children may very well have a difficult time detoxifying their bodies) it is recommended, now, that no child get a vaccine that contains mercury-just in case!
Children with autism act in very peculiar ways. Their behaviors are a form of communication. Their brain structure is not like ours in any way. They cannot usually help what they are doing. This is a big problem for parents of autistic children, since their children usually do not have any physical...

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