A recent news report on CNN news channel grabbed my attention and shocked me at the way autistic children were treated. In the news report, a special education teacher of a school in Kentucky punished her autistic student by putting him in a net ball bag for being unruly in the class. Just imagine the condition of the mother who comes to the school and sees her son struggling inside the bag and feeling scared. This is a nightmare for all parents especially for parents of autistic children. Why are people so inconsiderate to autistic people? In this case a special school teacher who is supposed to teach and care for such kind of children did such a dreadful act. Either the teacher did not have the necessary training or she was not aware that autism is a kind of neural disorder. Autism is a developmental disorder that appears in the first three years of a child. This neural development disorder affects the brain’s normal development of social and communication skills. An autistic child will have difficulty in playing, interacting with others and having verbal and nonverbal communication. Generally, autistic children will be normal up to two years and after that they will regress back to the toddler (baby) stage where they lose their basic language and social interaction skills. In December 2009, the US Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued a report stating that the prevalence of autism has risen to one in every 110 births in the US alone. Most researchers and scientists have not found out the cause of autism and many of them believe that it could be due to the genetic disorder, diet, mercury poisoning, inability of the body to use vitamins and minerals properly and vaccine sensitivity. A lot of research is being held, but the precise reason for the cause of autism is still not yet found.
Some of the symptoms of people suffering from autism are being overly sensitive in hearing, touching, smelling, seeing and sometimes tasting. For example, most of the autistic people may find some clothes itchy to wear and would refuse to wear them. They would sometimes become angry and distressed when forced to wear them. If someone tries to change the daily routine of an autistic person, it will lead to making the autistic person irritated and furious. Some autistic children have shown to constantly repeat certain body movements and to have unusual attachments to particular objects. Most of us may think that autistic people are shy, but that is not true. Autistic people lose their ability to communicate in a proper manner and find it difficult to start or maintain a social conversation. They may sometimes communicate with gestures instead of words and develop language slowly or not at all. Because of not being able to communicate in an appropriate manner, autistic people do not make friends and cannot play interactive games. They prefer to play alone and may sometimes get lost in their own world. Autism cannot be cured but people who have autism can lead a better life through the intensive and the appropriate training program. Most of the programs are designed based on the interest of the person in a highly structured schedule of constructive activities. Through this program, the autistic person is taught through his interest or hobbies. For example, if an autistic person is interested in drawing, a program will be developed where through drawing the autistic person will learn how to communicate, identify objects and perform the basic activities in life. Sometimes even visual aids can be used to help autistic persons to lead a better life. If you have any doubts on autism or feel that your child may be having one, do not think twice to call your family doctor or take your child to the nearby health care provider. You could also watch documentaries telecast in various channels on your TV connected to Dish TV in your house to know more about autism.