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Category Archives: Autism

Kentucky Autism Services and Supports

Find providers in your area The demands of caring for an individual with autism are great, and families frequently experience high levels of stress. Often, the lack of appropriate services adds to the frustration of families. To increase the awareness of currently available resources, the Kentucky Autism Training Center is gathering information about services to create an Kentucky Autism Supports and Services Directory. The goal of the Kentucky Autism Services and Supports Directory is to include all providers who serve individuals with disabilities in Kentucky. To be added to the Kentucky Autism Services and Supports Directory submit your organization application online. If you have any questions you can contact us at [email protected] or (502) 852-4631. Please be aware that there is no implied endorsement of the listed programs in the Kentucky Autism Supports and Services Directory by the KATC. The purpose of the Kentucky Autism Services and Supports Directory is to help parents and professionals share information. It is recommended that parents speak to a representative of the program before enrolling their children, to ensure that the interests, skills, talents and needs of each child can be met in the program. Continue reading



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Kentucky Autism Services and Supports

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Autism-Topic Overview – WebMD

What is autism? Autism is a brain disorder that often makes it hard to communicate with and relate to others. With autism, the different areas of the brain fail to work together. Most people with autism will always have some trouble relating to others. But early diagnosis and treatment have helped more and more people who have autism to reach their full potential. Autism tends to run in families, so experts think it may be something that you inherit. Scientists are trying to find out exactly which genes may be responsible for passing down autism in families. Other studies are looking at whether autism can be caused by other medical problems or by something in your child’s surroundings. False claims in the news have made some parents concerned about a link between autism and vaccines. But studies have found no link between vaccines and autism. It’s important to make sure that your child gets all childhood vaccines. They help keep your child from getting serious diseases that can cause harm or even death. Symptoms almost always start before a child is 3 years old. Usually, parents first notice that their toddler has not started talking yet and is not acting like other children the same age. But it is not unusual for a child with autism to start to talk at the same time as other children the same age, then lose his or her language skills. Symptoms of autism include: There is no “typical” person with autism. People can have many different kinds of behaviors, from mild to severe. Parents often say that their child with autism prefers to play alone and does not make eye contact with other people. Autism may also include other problems: There are guidelines your doctor will use to see if your child has symptoms of autism. The guidelines put symptoms into categories such as: Your child may also have a hearing test and some other tests to make sure that problems are not caused by some other condition. Treatment for autism involves special behavioral training. Behavioral training rewards appropriate behavior (positive reinforcement) to teach children social skills and to teach them how to communicate and how to help themselves as they grow older. With early treatment, most children with autism learn to relate better to others. They learn to communicate and to help themselves as they grow older. Depending on the child, treatment may also include such things as speech therapy or physical therapy. Medicine is sometimes used to treat problems such as depression or obsessive-compulsive behaviors. Exactly what type of treatment your child needs depends on the symptoms, which are different for each child and may change over time. Because people with autism are so different, something that helps one person may not help another. So be sure to work with everyone involved in your child’s education and care to find the best way to manage symptoms. An important part of your child’s treatment plan is making sure that other family members get training about autism and how to manage symptoms. Training can reduce family stress and help your child function better. Some families need more help than others. Take advantage of every kind of help you can find. Talk to your doctor about what help is available where you live. Family, friends, public agencies, and autism organizations are all possible resources. Remember these tips: Raising a child with autism is hard work. But with support and training, your family can learn how to cope. WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise Continue reading



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Autism-Topic Overview - WebMD

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Signs of Autism – National Autism Association

Autism is a neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by: Because Autism is a spectrum disorder, it can range from very mild to very severe and occur in all ethnic, socioeconomic and age groups. Males are four times more likely to have autism than females. Some children with autism appear normal before age 1 or 2 and then suddenly regress and lose language or social skills they had previously gained. This is called the regressive type of autism. Early Signs: A person with ASD might: People with autism may also: Other Symptoms: M-CHAT-RTM General Information The Modified Checklist for Autism in Toddlers, Revised with Follow-Up (M-CHAT-R/F; Robins, Fein, & Barton, 2009) is a 2-stage parent-report screening tool to assess risk for Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). The M-CHAT-R/F is an autism screening tool designed to identify children 16 to 30 months of age who should receive a more thorough assessment for possible early signs of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) or developmental delay. The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends that all children receive autism-specific screening at 18 and 24 months of age, in addition to broad developmental screening at 9, 18, and 24 months. The M-CHAT-R/F, one of the AAP recommended tools, can be administered at these well-child visits. If you and your physician agree that further screening is needed, you can request a free developmental assessment through your State Department of Health. For more information on M-CHAT-R, visit http://m-chat.org. Source: http://m-chat.org. Developmental Screening Developmental screening is a short test to tell if children are learning basic skills when they should, or if they might have delays. During developmental screening the doctor might ask the parent some questions or talk and play with the child during an exam to see how she learns, speaks, behaves, and moves. A delay in any of these areas could be a sign of a problem. All children should be screened for developmental delays and disabilities during regular well-child doctor visits at: Additional screening might be needed if a child is at high risk for developmental problems due to preterm birth, low birth weight or other reasons. In addition, all children should be screened specifically for ASDs during regular well-child doctor visits at: Additional screening might be needed if a child is at high risk for ASDs (e.g., having a sister, brother or other family member with an ASD) or if behaviors sometimes associated with ASDs are present. It is important for doctors to screen all children for developmental delays, but especially to monitor those who are at a higher risk for developmental problems due to preterm birth, low birth weight, or having a brother or sister with an ASD. If your childs doctor does not routinely check your child with this type of developmental screening test, ask that it be done. If the doctor sees any signs of a problem, a comprehensive diagnostic evaluation is needed. Comprehensive Diagnostic Evaluation The second step of diagnosis is a comprehensive evaluation. This thorough review may include looking at the childs behavior and development and interviewing the parents. It may also include a hearing and vision screening, genetic testing, neurological testing, and other medical testing. In some cases, the primary care doctor might choose to refer the child and family to a specialist for further assessment and diagnosis. Specialists who can do this type of evaluation include: Source: http://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/autism/screening.html If your child is young and you suspect there might be something wrong, immediately seek early intervention services for your child. Click here for more information on Early Intervention. Continue reading



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Signs of Autism - National Autism Association

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Autism-Symptoms – WebMD

Core symptoms The severity of symptoms varies greatly, but all people with autism have some core symptoms in the areas of: Symptoms of autism are usually noticed first by parents and other caregivers sometime during the child’s first 3 years. Although autism is present at birth (congenital), signs of the disorder can be difficult to identify or diagnose during infancy. Parents often become concerned when their toddler does not like to be held; does not seem interested in playing certain games, such as peekaboo; and does not begin to talk. Sometimes, a child with autism will start to talk at the same time as other children the same age, then lose his or her language skills. Parents also may be confused about their child’s hearing abilities. It often seems that a child with autism does not hear, yet at other times, he or she may appear to hear a distant background noise, such as the whistle of a train. With early and intensive treatment, most children improve their ability to relate to others, communicate, and help themselves as they grow older. Contrary to popular myths about children with autism, very few are completely socially isolated or “live in a world of their own.” Continue reading



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Autism-Symptoms - WebMD

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Autism Spectrum: Get Facts on the Disorders

Autism Autism Overview Autism is a complex developmental disorder that has the following three defining core features: A number of other associated symptoms frequently coexist with autism. Most people with autism have problems using language, forming relationships, and appropriately interpreting and responding to the external world around them. Autism is a behaviorally defined developmental disorder that begins in early childhood. Although the diagnosis of autism may not be made until a child reaches preschool or school age, the signs and symptoms of autism may be apparent by the time the child is aged 12-18 months, and the behavioral characteristics of autism are almost always evident by the time the child is aged 3 years. Language delay in the preschool years (younger than 5 years) is typically the presenting problem for more severely affected children with autism. Higher functioning children with autism are generally identified with behavioral problems when they are aged approximately 4-5 years or with social problems later in childhood. Autism disorder persists throughout the person’s lifetime, although many people are able to learn to control and modify their behavior to some extent. As of May 2013, autism, along with what were formally described as Asperger’s syndrome and pervasive developmental disorders were classified by the American Psychiatric Association as autism spectrum disorders (ASDs). All of these disorders are characterized by varying degrees of problems with communication, social interaction, and atypical, repetitive behaviors. There is a wide range of symptoms, severity, and other manifestations of these disorders. The expression of autism spectrum disorders varies widely among affected individuals. A child with significant impairment in all three of the core functioning areas (socialization, communication, and atypical, repetitive behaviors) may have a lower level-functioning autism spectrum disorder, while a child with similar problems but without delays in language development may have a higher level-functioning autism spectrum disorder. Some people are affected with fairly mild symptoms and signs of autism. Many of these individuals learn to live independent lives. Others are more severely affected and require lifelong care and supervision. As the following statistics indicate, autism is a common developmental disorder. There is no cure for autism; however, there is good news. Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 7/18/2014 Continue reading



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Autism Spectrum: Get Facts on the Disorders

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Autism Spectrum Disorder: Get Facts on Tests and Treatment

Autism Symptoms and Screening Medical Author: David Perlstein, MD FAAP Medical Editor: William C. Shiel, Jr., MD, FACP, FACR It is commonplace to have a family member or close friend with a child diagnosed with one of the autism spectrum disorders (ASDs, including autistic disorder, Asperger disorder, pervasive developmental disorder). These are a set of neurodevelopmental disabilities affecting young children and adults, which are currently not considered “curable”. The goals of management include minimizing the symptoms and maximizing both independent function and quality of life. These are not uncommon disorders. Their prevalence has been estimated as approximately 6.5 per 1000 children, or 1 in every 150 children. Many believe that there is an “Autism Epidemic.” However, as with many diseases and disorders, there are many reasons for this high prevalence. Fortunately, significant media coverage and increased research have resulted in a better educated public and more vigilant healthcare practitioners. It is clear that early diagnosis and intervention are associated with better outcomes. The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) published an updated guide for the “Management of Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders.” In this publication, both background information and management choices are reviewed. In addition the AAP’s approved “Surveillance and Screening Algorithm: Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASDs)” is introduced. Currently this translates into the following: All children should be screened for autism at 18 months and again at 2 years of age, and at any time a parent raises a concern about autism spectrum disorders (even if they have no signs of developmental delay). Although many health care practitioners were already screening, the process has been formalized and I expect that even more children will be referred, resulting in earlier diagnosis and intervention. Continue reading



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Autism Spectrum Disorder: Get Facts on Tests and Treatment

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