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  Autism Awareness
Bhavana NairBhavana Nair
 

Introduction

Types of Autism

Causes of Autism

Symptoms of Autism

Getting an Evaluation

Any cure for Autism ?

Autism education - Importance

Professionals who can help

Centers for Autism training

Autism Spectrum Disorder Schools

Autism Internet Groups - India




Introduction

Autism is a brain disorder that often results in a lifetime of impaired thinking, feeling, and social functioning -the most unique of our human attributes. It typically affects a person's ability to communicate, form relationships with others and respond appropriately to the external world. The disorder becomes apparent in children generally between the ages of 2 and 3 years.

Types of Autism

Autism (sometimes called "classical autism") is the most common condition in a group of developmental disorders known as the autism spectrum disorders

Other autism spectrum disorders include:

• Asperger syndrome
• Rett syndrome
• Childhood disintegrative disorder
• Pervasive developmental disorder not otherwise specified (usually referred to as PDD-NOS).
Autism statistics suggest that two to six children out of every 1,000 will have autism. According to autism statistics, males are four times more likely to have autism than females. Girls with autism tend to have more severe symptoms and greater cognitive impairment.

Causes of Autism

Scientists aren't certain of the cause of autism, but it's likely that both genetic and environment play a role. Recent studies strongly suggest that some people have a genetic predisposition to autism. In families with one child with autism, the risk of having a second child with the disorder is approximately 5 percent or one in 20. This is greater than the risk for the general population. Researchers are looking for clues about which genes contribute to increased susceptibility. In some cases, parents and other relatives of a child with autism show mild impairments in social and communicative skills or engage in repetitive behaviors. Evidence also suggests that some emotional disorders, such as manic depression, occur more frequently than average in the families of people with autism. The theory that parental practices are responsible for autism has been disproved completely. Some studies suggest that people with autism have abnormal levels of serotonin or other neurotransmitters in the brain. These abnormalities suggest that autism could result from the disruption of normal brain development early in fetal development caused by defects in genes that control brain growth and that regulate how neurons communicate with each other. While these findings are intriguing, they are preliminary and require further study.

Symptoms of Autism

You can tell that a child has Autism because he/she :

• will have an extremely difficult time communicating
• will repeat words and phrases over and over again
• will lack eye contact
• may fixate on inanimate objects
• may exhibit some repetitive type of behaviour (flapping, rocking, twirling etc)
• may walk on their toes
• may resist changes in their daily routines
• have unmotivated tantrums
• have insensitivity to pain
• have an inability to verbally express their needs and wants correctly (for example, a child with autism might say 'you want a water glass' when he/she is thirsty and wants a drink instead of saying ‘I’)
• may also have a sensory impairment (sensitivity to sight, hearing, touch, smell, and taste).

• These are some of the more common symptoms seen in children with autism. They usually start to appear between the ages of about twenty four to thirty months though now some practitioners are able to diagnose even earlier, sometimes as early as 6 months.

Getting an Evaluation

One of the frustrating things that occurs when parents think something is wrong with their child's development is that they may be told 'not to worry' or that they 'should just wait.' Experts think that it is better for parents to trust their instincts and get their child evaluated if they think that they aren't developing normally. Doctors rely on a core group of behaviors when diagnosing autism.

These behaviors include:

• Impaired ability to make friends with peers
• Impaired ability to initiate or sustain a conversation with others
• Absence or impairment of imaginative and social play
• Stereotyped, repetitive, or unusual use of language
• Restricted patterns of interest that are abnormal in intensity or focus
• Preoccupation with certain objects or subjects
• Inflexible adherence to specific routines or rituals.



Doctors will often use a questionnaire or other screening instrument to gather information about a child's development and behavior. Some screening instruments rely solely on parent observations; others rely on a combination of parent and doctor observations. If screening instruments indicate the possibility of Autism, doctors will ask for a more comprehensive evaluation.
Among the early signs and symptoms that parents and Pediatricians look for to alert them that a child needs further evaluation for autism include:

• not smiling by six months of age
• not babbling, pointing or using other gestures by 12 months
• not using single words by age 16 months
• not using two word phrases by 24 months
• having a regression in development, with any loss of language or social skills
Infants with autism might also avoid eye contact and as they get older, act as if they are unaware of when people come and go around them.

Is there any cure for Autism ?

The more we understand autism, the more progress we can make when trying to cure it. In the medical sense, there is no cure for autism. Sometimes, the disease lessens as the child ages. The most successful intervention is ABA or Applied Behavior Analysis. Another approach is the ever popular TEACCH. (Treatment and Education of Autistic and Communication Handicapped Children) These programmes use a variety of strategies to enforce proper behavior in children with autism. Vitamin B6, taken with magnesium has also been found to be helpful. This vitamin has improved the overall condition of about 45% of all children who take it. There is news of another vitamin Di-methylglycine, that improves communication skills. These are all observations during our teaching sessions and also from feedback from parents.

There is no single best treatment for autism. One point that most professionals agree on is that early treatment is important; another is that most individuals with autism respond well to highly structured, specialized programs.

Before you make decisions on your child's autism treatment, you will want to gather information about the various treatments that are available. Learn as much as you can, look at all the options and make your decision on your child's treatment based on your child's needs.

The importance of early Autism education

If your child is under three years of age, he or she should be eligible for an early intervention programmes. These services are provided by workers qualified to care of toddlers with disabilities and are usually in the child's home or a place familiar to the child.

Early and intensive autism education can help children grow and learn new skills. Child development research has established that the rate of human learning and development is most rapid in the pre-school years. Timing of intervention becomes particularly important when a child runs the risk of missing an opportunity to learn during a state of maximum readiness. If the most teachable moments or stages of greater readiness are not taken advantage of, a child may have difficulty learning a particular skill at a later time.

By law, the schools must prepare and carry out a set of instruction goals or specific skills for every child in a special education program. The list of skills is known as the child's Individualized Education Program (IEP). The IEP is an agreement between the school and the family on the child's goals. When your child's IEP is developed, you will be asked to attend the meeting. Parents play an important part in creating the program, as they know their child best. Once your child's IEP is developed, a meeting is scheduled once or twice a year to review your child's progress and to make any alterations to reflect his or her changing needs.

Professionals who can help achieve this are :

• Special educators
• Speech therapists
• Occupational therapists
• School psychologists
• Social workers
• School nurses

Some of the centers/schools offering Autism training in India are :

Action For Autism (AFA)

The National Centre for Autism
Pocket 7 & 8
Jasola Vihar
New Delhi-110025
Tel: 91-11-65347422
Tel: 91-11-40540991, 40540992
Email: actionforautism@gmail.com
Web: http://www.autism-india.org

Assam Autism Foundation
5 Dinesh Ojha Path, Rajgarh
Guwahati 781 005
Assam
Tel: 00911-9864027292/14608
Email: autismassam@sify.com
Web: http://www.aaf.org.in/

Autism Society West Bengal
22 Anjuman Ara Begum Row
Kolkata 700 033
Tel: 033 64571576
Tel: 033 24730706
Email: autismsocietywb@gmail.com

Autism Society of Hyderabad (ASH)
1-2-593/26A Near Bala Saibaba Temple
Gagan Mahal
Hyderabad 500 029
Tel: 91 9848513192

Forum For Autism
2nd floor, Block A, Jeshtaram Baug
Dr.Ambedkar Rd, Dadar,
Mumbai 400 014
Email: forumforautism@hotmail.com
Web: http://www.geocities.com/Autismawareness/

Institute for Remedial Intervention Services
8-2-/B/2/D
Road No:11
Banjara Hills
Hyderabad 500034
Web: http://www.autismindia.com

India Autism Forum
S-123, Kirloskar Colony,
III Stage IV Block, Basveswarnagar,
Bangalore 560 079
Tel: 080 3225279
Tel: 080 3230357
Email: Info@ashaforautism.com
Web: http://www.ashaforautism.com

Khushi
A/1,Raj Mahal Apartments,
Service Road, Jogeshwari (East)
Next to BMC garden
Mumbai 400 060
Tel: 98195 61468
Tel: 98205 92543
Email: reena.singh@khushi.net.in
Web: http://www.khushi.net.in

Movement for Autism
House No 216
Ramachandrapuram
Jalahalli Post
Bangalore 560013
Tel: 080-28391050
Email: swapnatn@vsnl.com

Parents Network for Autism
C-213 Patel Park
Nirala Nagar,
Lucknow U. P
Tel: 0522-2786508

Sambhav
B-4/24, Chitrakoot
Ajmer Road
Jaipur
Tel: 09214350987

SOPAN
A-4 Silver Arch, Ramnagar
Borivali (W)
Mumbai 400 092
Tel: 022-28064443
Tel: 022-28864183
Email: sopantrust@rediffmail.com
Web: http://www.sopan.org

Ummeed Child Development Center
Ground Floor, Mantri Pride
1-B, 1/62, N.M. Joshi Marg
Subhash Nagar
Near Chinchpokli Station
Lower Parel
Mumbai 400011
Tel: 65528310, 65564054, 23002006, 23001144
Email: ummeed@vsnl.net
Web: http://www.ummeed.org

We Can Trust
Resource Centre:
4/ 370, South First Main Road,
Kapaleeswarar Nagar,
Neelangarai,
Chennai 600 041
Ph: 55461010

No 4/2 Parsn Riviera
4th Main Road Extn
Kotturpuram, Chennai - 600085
Tel: 044 24464655
Tel: 044 24473136
Tel: 044 4464077
Email: wecantrust@rediffmail.com


Schools for Autism Spectrum Disorder (in alphabetical order)

Academy for Severe Handicaps and Autism (ASHA)
3rd Stage 4th Block
Basveswarnagar
Bangalore- 560 079
Tel: 080-23225279
Fax: 080-22258103
Email : info@ashaforautism.com
Web: http://www.ashaforautism.com/

Adhaar Workskills Training for Adolescents and Adults
The National Centre for Autism
Pkt 7 & 8 Jasola Vihar
New Delhi 110025
Tel: 91-11-65347422, 40540991/2
Fax: 91-11-40540993
Email: actionforautism@gmail.com

Ashiana
Nityanand Municipal School
Sahar Road, Andheri East
Mumbai
Tel: 022-26845062, 26125742

Asha Ka Jharna
Harlalka Kothi
Nawalgarh 333042
Rajasthan
Tel: 01594-222930/223094
Email: sudeepgo@rediffmail.com

The Ashish Centre
F-3, First Floor
(Opp. Ramila Maidan)
Vikaspuri
New Delhi 110048
Email: mail@ashishindia.org
Web: http://www.ashishindia.org/

Autism Centre
c/o Prasanna Hospital
Deccan Gymkhana,
Pune 411004
Tel: 91-020-25652246
Email: info@prasannaautism.org
Web: http://www.prasannaautism.org

Centre for Autism Therapy, Counselling and Help (CATCH)
26, Madhusudan Nagar
Unit 4
Bhubanswar 751001
Orissa
Tel: 9937004040
Email: jenareeta@hotmail.com
Web: http://www.catchindia.org

Child Development Center (CDC) at the Hinduja Hospital
Rm no-2310, 2nd floor, OPD bldg
P.D. Hinduja Hospital,
Mahim Mumbai-400016
Tel: 24451515 ext- 8258/ 8259, 2447258/59
Fax: 24445907
Email: vrajeshudani@yahoo.co.in
(updated 8/08)

Communication DEALL
47 Hutchins Road II Cross
Sarvajna Nagara (Cooke's Town)
Bangalore 560 084
Tel: 91 080 2580 0826
Email: info@communicationdeall.org
Web: http://www.communicationdeall.org

Creating Connections
10/4 Block B
6 Sunny Park
Kolkata 700019
Tel: + 91 98309 41233 + 91 98102 25923
Email: shaneelm@gmail.com

Dakshinya Special Education Centre & School for Autism
A 32/250, Old Siddharth Nagar
Road no. 10, Behind Aadarsha Vidyalaya
Goregaon (W)
Mumbai-400062
Tel : 9819023790

Darpan
3759/2 Kundan Nagar
Near Gurudwara Model Town Extn.
Model Town
Ludhiana Punjab
Tel: 09417160463

Disha Charitable Trust
319-320, Race Course Towers, Gotri Road,
Vadodara-390 007
Gujarat
Tel: 91-265-2325250
Fax: 91-265-2300059
Email: dishatrust@iqara.net
Web: http://www.disha.org/


Dikshan
22 Anjuman Ara Begum Row
Kolkata 700033
Tel: 033 - 24730706, 24170860
Email: indrani_basu55@yahoo.co.in

DEC
C/o Spastics Society of Karnataka
31, 5th Cross, Off 5th Main
Indira Nagar
1st Stage
Bangalore 560038

Diuli Daycare Centre cum Preschool
841/1, Alto Porvorim,
Goa 403 521
Tel: 0832 - 2414916

Jyot Special School
Kutarkar Residency
Near multipurpose school,
Borda, Margao, Goa
Tel: 0832 2765097

Muskan
Special Education Centre for Autism
M.S. 39, Sec-D (Near Puraniya Chauraha),
Aliganj, Lucknow
Tel: 0522-2334811
Mob: 09794904682

Open Door
Pkt 7 & 8 Jasola Vihar
New Delhi 110025
Tel: 91-11-65347422, 40540991/2
Fax: 91-11-40540993
Email: actionforautism@gmail.com
Web: http://www.autism-india.org/afa_opendoor.html

Pathways
Sunita S. Lele
14, Pooja, Pandurang Colony
Pune 411 038
Maharashtra

Pradip Centre for Autism
Dr. Mallika Banerjee
Flat No: 4, Lakeview Cooperative Housing Society
P-203/B, Block B
Kolkatta - 700089
Tel : 033-25341832/25748503 (office) 25340891 (d)
Email: mallib@hotmail.com

Priyanj Special School
239/1905 Motilal Nagar no 1,
Achyut Behre Marg,
Near Ganesh Mandir, Road no 4,
Goregaon (west),
Mumbai -400104.
Tel: 022-28753880/ 9821098325
Email: priyanj_school@yahoo.co.in

Rajkumari Amrit Kaur Child Study Centre
Department of Child Development
Lady Irwin College
Sikandra Road, New Delhi
Tel: 011 23719859/23318850
Email: rakcsc_lic@yahoo.com
Web: http://www.ladyirwin.edu.in

Rakshna
No 4 Rajaji Street
Gandhi Nagar
Madhurai 625 020
Tamil Nadu

SAI
173, Ramkrishna, 2nd floor
10th Road, Khar West
Mumbai 400 052
Tel: 022-26007267
Email: kamini108@rediffmail.com

SAI-Apoorva Center for Autism
c/o Lions Club of Sarakki
21st mn, 1st Cross, JP Nagar Phase 2
Bangalore, Karnataka 560078
Tel: 080-65710445, 09243195154
Email: apoorva.autism@gmail.com
Web: http://www.saiautismcenter.org

SAIRAM Autism
C/o Jai Vakeel School
Sewri Hills, Sewri Road
Mumbai 400 033
Tel: 022-24701129, 24702285

Samarpan
M.G. Road Municipal School
Opp. Parle Vidya Tilak Mandir
3rd floor, Above Marathi Medium School
Near Kesrekar Garden
Vile Parle (East)
Mumbai 400 057
Tel : 022 - 26336537, 56043998

Sankalp Learning Centre
Q-9, New No. 41, 6th. Avenue.
Chennai 600040
Tamil Nadu
Tel: 044 42113947
Email: sulata.sankalp@airtelbroadband.in

Sawera
Dr BR Ambedkar Centre
Guru Ravidas Mandir Complex
Opp New Railway Station
Sector 2, Naya Nangal, Ropar
Tel: 01887-221574, 94170-43267
Email: sawera_chd@hotmail.com

School of Hope
CPWD Complex
Near Chinmay School
Vasant Vihar
New Delhi 110 057
Tel: 26143853, 26151572
Email: tamana@mantramail.com

Smt. Radhabai Jamnadas Thakkar Autistic Centre
Shree Manav Seva Sangh
255-257, Sion Road, Sion (West)
Mumbai-400022
Tel: 24092266, 24077350, 24015561, 24077327
Email: smss@bom8.vsnl.com
Web: http://www.shreemanavseva.org

St. Mary's School, Aasmaan
Sector-19, Dwarka
New Delhi 110 075
Tel: +91 11 28042487
Email: stmarysschooldwarka@rediff.com

Sunshine Centre For Autism
280, 6th Cross
Domlur Layout
Bangalore-71
Tel : 08065360892
Email: sunshineautism@vsnl.net

Swabhimaan Trust
Plot No: 218 & 301, Palkalai Nagar,
Palavakkam, Chennai-600041
Tel: +91 44 24511670
Email: ism_chhc@hotmail.com
Web: http://www.autismchennai.in

Vatsalya Special School
R-756 Old Rajinder Nagar
New Delhi
Tel: 011 25862824

We Can Trust
No 4/2 Parsn Riviera
4th Main Road Extn
Kotturpuram, Chennai - 600085
Tel: 044 24464655, 24473136
Email: wecantrust@rediffmail.com

Autism Internet Groups Related to India

1. Autism India Network
2. Autism India Group on Yahoo
3. India Developmental Disabilities
4. Autism India
5. help_autism
6. india_autism_forum
7. india_autism_forum2