Don’t Be Fooled by 8 Common Assumptions About Autism

An autism diagnosis triggers tough questions and difficult emotions for parents. As the number of children diagnosed with autism has risen, so has the amount of misinformation about autism spectrum disorders (ASD). An autism expert helps you separate fact from fiction.

Awareness Is Key as Autism Rates Climb (Infographic)

More American children than ever have an autism spectrum disorder (ASD) diagnosis: one out of every 68 children, according to the most recent data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The new report does not identify why cases are on the rise. But beyond environmental factors, experts think more autism awareness and … Read More

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Video Games and Autism: Watch for Overuse

Contributor: Thomas Frazier, II, PhD  With their rapid-fire action and constant reinforcement — through points and level progress, for example — video games can be more engaging and engrossing than everyday activities. A  study from the University of Missouri finds this is especially true for boys diagnosed with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) or attention deficit-hyperactivity … Read More

Mapping the Autistic Brain

Bruce Trapp, PhD, is shining new light on the autistic brain. Literally. Years ago, Dr. Trapp, Chairman of Neurosciences at Cleveland Clinic’s Lerner Research Institute, found a way to make astrocyte cells — the star-shaped cells that help synapses in the brain connect — glow fluorescently. This has allowed him to study how the brains … Read More

Future Mothers: What the Valproate-Autism Link Means

Expectant mothers who take the drug valproate to control seizures may face an unexpected side effect: an increased risk of autism for their babies. A new study shows that the risk of autism increased threefold for children whose mothers took valproate, an anticonvulsant and mood-stabilizing drug, during pregnancy. If you are taking valproate and thinking … Read More

Autism and Genetics: A Q&A About What We Know

There’s good news coming from autism researchers at a rapid pace. Almost monthly, we hear about new genes tied to autism spectrum disorders. Still, our understanding of the genetics of autism is years behind our understanding of how genetics affects cancer, for example. With that in mind, I sat down with my colleague and autism … Read More

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7 Surprises About People With Autism

Contributor: Thomas Frazier, II, PhD  If your assumptions about autism come from popular culture, you may not have the full picture. Stereotypes don’t fit people with autism any better than they fit the rest of us. When we talk about autism spectrum disorders (ASD), spectrum is an important word. ASD covers a wide range of … Read More

Spotting Autism Early in Children

About 1 in 88 children have been diagnosed with some form of autism spectrum disorder, according to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). This group of disorders includes all developmental disabilities that can cause behavioral, social and communication challenges. If your child shows signs that he or she is not developing normally, it’s critical to … Read More