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Petersen1

EmmaPetersen
Mr.Doucette
BiologyH/Period6
7March2015

Autism
Introduction:
Autismisaseriousdevelopmentaldisorderthatispresentfromearly
childhood,characterizedbydifficultyincommunicatingandformingrelationshipswithother
peopleandinusinglanguageandabstractconcepts.Thisdisorderaffectsonein68children.
AutismisthefastestgrowingseriousdevelopmentaldisabilityintheU.Sandcostsafamily
$60,000ayearonaverage.Autismiscausedbymutationsonchromosome16whichisaglitchis
inaDNAregionthatcontainsgeneswhichhavechangedveryrapidlyashumansevolved.In
otherwords,thesamemethodthathelpedevolvehumanintelligencemaycontributetoAutism.

Causes:
Autismcauseshavebeenreportedafterimmunization,noimmunization,afteran
illness,useofantibiotics,orarandomchemicalexposuresuchashouseholdcleaners.Thereis
alsogeneticcausesanddatafromwholegenomescreensinmultiplexfamiliessuggest
interactionsofatleast10genesinthecausationofautism.ThoughresearcherssayfindingDNA
deletionsandduplicationsonaspecificchromosomethattheysayexplainsonetotwopercentof
the1.5millioncasesofautismintheUnitedStatestoday.Howeverthereisworkthatidentifieda
regiononchromosome16whereasectionofDNAwaseitherdeletedorduplicated.Theregion
onchromosome16wherethedeletionsandduplicationsappearholds25genes,someofwhose
functionsarerelatedtothebrain,theotherregionsfunctionsareunknown.Thoughthereare

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environmentalandgeneticcausesthereisnoonecausetoautism.Therapidriseinautisminthe
past20yearsisnotsolelyduetogeneticsitself.

DiagnosisandEffect(Symptoms):
Imagineyouareatthemoviesandyouhavesomeone
talkingbehindyou,someone'smobilephoneringinginfrontofyou,someonechewingpopcorn
nexttoyou,someonewithreallysmellyshoes,andsomeonewithabrighthatoninthefront
rowitwouldbehardtoconcentrateonwhat'sgoingoninthemovie,wouldn'tit?That'show
peoplewithautismfeelalotofthetime.Peoplewithautisminterpretfigurativelanguage
literally.Forexample,whenyousayItspouringcatsanddogs,theyseepetscomingoutofa
pitcher.Instead,tellthemItsraininghard.Theycouldhaveproblemsincommunicatingbut
cantestaverageoraboveaveragewhendrawing,creatingmusic,solvingmathproblems,or
memorizingfacts.Studiesshowtheydobetteronnonverbalintelligencetests.Theyareusually
underoroversensitivetolight,noise,heat,touch,tasteorsmell.Peoplewithautismdislike
change.Noteveryoneappreciateschange,butwecanunderstandandcopewithit.Withautism,
theyfeelsecurewiththesameorsimilarroutineeveryday.Moreoftheunusualeffectsarethat
theytendtogetobsessionswithaparticularobjectorsubject/topic.Signsstarttoshowinthe
first3yearsoflifesuchasoddbehaviorsinludingflickingtheirfingers,flappingtheirarmsor
hands,spinningandjumping.Thoughallofthesesymptomscancauseonetothinkthatthey
needtobeconstantlywatched,therearetherapiestheycangothroughtohelppeoplewithautism
learntobemoreindependent.Manyofthechildrenthatareinorhavegonethroughthistherapy
havelearnedtocook,dress,shop,andwork.Oncetheyareadultstheycangothroughother
programstoteachthemtodomeaningfulworkintheircommunity.

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TreatmentorCures:
Autismhasnocure.Therearetreatmentoptionswhichincludes,
multiplebehavioraltherapies,physicaltherapy,medicationtreatments,nutritionaltreatments,
andmultipleeducationaltherapies.Theearlierthetreatmentstartsthemoreeffectiveitwillbeto
yourchild.Medicationsareonlyusedtotreataggression,selfinjuriousbehavior,andsevere
tantrums.ManymedicationsareprescribedandnotapprovedbytheFDA,whicharemany
offlabelantidepressants.In2006,theFDAapprovedRisperdone(AKARisperdal)for
treatmentofirritabilityinonesages516.Olanzapine(Zyprexa)andotherantipsychotic
medicationsareusedforaggressioninchildren.Tomakeiteasierontheparents,theyuse
prescribedmedications,therapy,andmaybeputinasupportgroup.Thoughthereisnocure,
newtoolsareenablinginvestigatorstotrackactivityofautismlinkedgenes.Researchersare
lookingforgenesthatcouldincreasetheriskofautismandpossiblebiologicmarkerspresentat
birth.

Prevention:
Thereisnomedicalorgenetictesttocheckforautismbutyoucanhelppreventit
inmanyways.Onewayisgoodprenatalcareandgoodweightgainbythemother.
Thingstodo
before
pregnancy
:
Youshouldavoidchemicalpreservativesandprocessedfoodsdueto
gastrointestinalproblemsinchildrenwithautism.
Thewomanshouldreduceoreliminatealcoholandcaffeine,andeliminate
tobaccouse.
Alwaysavoidchemicalsincleanersorpersonalcareproducts.

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Whenanticipatingpregnancy,avoidtheflushotoranyothervaccinesforone
yearpriortoconception.
Thingstodo
during
pregnancy
:
Alwaysget80gramsofproteinperday.
Avoidunnecessaryultrasoundsduetoradiationrisks.
Researchshowstheresahigherriskofautismifyouhaveacesareandelivered
babyoranylaborinducingdrugs.

Stories:
Storyabouttheparent
:TonyWestonisadadoftwosons,agedthreeandfive.Bothwere
diagnosedwithautism.HegotlotsofsupportfromtheNationalAutisticSocietys(NAS)
EarlyBirdcourse.HewantedtogivebacktotheNAS,sotofundraisefortheorganization,he
chosetotakeonthe
InauguralPrudentialRideLondonSurrey100
.Iitsa100milecycling
challengethatheusedtoraisemoney.TonyispartofthereasontheNASisabletokeepthe
EarlyBirdprogramgoingtocontinuetohelpandsupportfamilieswithautisticchildren.

Storyaboutagirlwithautism
:Elliewasdiagnosedwithautismatagenine.Sherememberbeing
diagnosedandfeelingleftoutaschildinschool.Shealwaysfeltstressedinprimaryschooland
couldntdealwithbeinginaclasswithotherstudents.Shewouldgetsostressedshewouldleave
classandrunaround.TohelpElliegotafulltimehelper,Ms.N,whokeptherfromrunningout
ofschool.Shestruggledfindingasecondaryschoolbutfinallysettledinasmall,allgirlsschool
andeventuallymovedout.Forherthehardestthingforlivingonherownwasfillingoutforms,

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makingphonecallsandalwayseyecontact.Shescomfortablearoundherfriendsandclass.She
isveryconfidentwithherselfanddoesntwantanytreatmentorcure.

Storyfromasibling
:Bridgetis13andrecentlyfoundoutherlittlesisterhadautism.Shenoticed
shewasdifferentbutdidntunderstandit.Bridgetfeltbadthatshearguedwithhersisterbefore
sherealizedwhatautismwas.Shehaslearnedandisalotmorepatientwithheryoungersister.
TheyarebestfriendsnowandBridgetprotectshersisterandtriestomakeherlittlesisterslife
easier.

SupportGroups:
AmericanAdvocacyGroup
thisorganizationhelpsfamiliesandindividualswith
receivingbenefitsandassistancetheyareentitledto.Theyhelpyourfamilygetbenefits
fromthegovernmentandschooldistrictstoensuretheygetthefinancialsupportand
educationthatthefamilyneeds.
website:
americanadvocacygroup.com
ParentsHelpingParents
thissupportgroupisforthefamiliesthatdecidedto
homeschoolchildrenwithAutism.Ithelpswithlearninghowtocontroltheir
socialbehaviorsandimprovetheirlearningability.Thegroupmeettogetherevery
monthonthethirdSaturdayfrom10am.to12pm.
website:
php.com

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F.A.C.T
Theyintroduceyoutootherfamiliesgoingthroughthesamesituation
financiallyandemotionally.Yourentirefamilywillmakenewfriendsandhave360
degreesoffullsupport.WhichisimportanttomakeyourAutisticchildfeelmore
comfortableandsecure.
website:
www.factfamily.org

Conclusion:
AutismhasalwaysinterestedmebecauseIhavegonetoschoolwithpeoplewho
havenotonlyautismbutalsoothermental/geneticdisorders.WhiledoingthisreportIlearned
thatautismmainlyaffectsthewayonethinksandinteractswiththepeoplearoundthem.Autistic
peoplearenotstupidoruneducatedinmanywaystheycanactuallybereallysmartandeven
scoreaboveaverageinnonverbaltests.Thehardestpartaboutthisprojectwasfindingthe
geneticsandspecificchromosomethatcausesautismbecause,thelevelofthearticlesIhadto
readwereveryadvancedanddifficulttounderstand.Theeasiestpartwasfindingtheeffectsit
hadontheonediagnosedwithautism.Autismisaseriousdevelopmentaldisorderthatispresent
fromearlychildhood,characterizedbydifficultyincommunicatingandformingrelationships
withotherpeopleandinusinglanguageandabstractconcepts.

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References
http://www.autism.org.uk/Livingwithautism/Parentsrelativesandcarers/Siblings/Myspecialb
rotherben/Whatotherdifficultiesdopeoplewithautismhave.aspx

http://www.webmd.com/brain/autism/understandingautismbasics

http://www.yourguidetoautism.com/canapersonwithautismleadanormallife/

http://www.healthcommunities.com/autism/children/treatmentforautism.shtml

https://www.autismspeaks.org/science/sciencenews/scientistsusenewtooltrackactivityautis
mlinkedgenes

https://www.zocdoc.com/answers/10247/isthereanywaytopreventautismduringapregnancy

https://www.autismspeaks.org/aboutus/pressreleases/autismspeakstop10autismresearchach
ievements2012

http://psychcentral.com/lib/medicationsforautism/0005716

http://www.autism.com/prevention

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Chromosomal
abnormalitylinkedtoautism

http://nationalautismassociation.org/aboutautism/causesofautism/