"Autism as a Neurological Disorder" is a worthy example of a paper on neurology. Autism is a multifaceted developmental incapacity that establishes itself in the first three years of a human being (Benaron, 2009). The main body organ that is affected by this developmental disability is the brain. This disorder is primarily the result of neurological disorder and affects normal brain function. The brain functions such as non-verbal communication are affected among others. Kids suffering from autism tend to have issues with non-verbal communication with the rest of their peers. The condition has a broad spectrum often referred to wide-spectrum disorder.
It implies that people who suffer from this condition do not exhibit similar symptoms. Instead, there are variations in terms of symptoms based on brain capabilities and other past medical conditions that are still under scrutiny by medical researchers. Affected Body Parts Autism is extensively attributed to damage or associated abnormalities in the structure or functioning of the brain. The changes in the normal functioning of the brain are triggered by the disruption that occurs in the nervous system of the body. The brain abnormalities consequently cause random seizures that are not predictable, behavioural complications, movement disorders, and problems in the sensory systems and learning difficulties.
The other body systems affected by autism include the endocrine, immune and gastrointestinal system. Causes of Autism No single cause can be medically associated with causing autism, but there’ s a host of theories under the consideration of medical research (Yapko, 2003). Medical researchers are investing genetic and hereditary linkages to autism. There has been evidence that supports the genetic relation argument. This is because researchers have identified related disabilities and a pattern of autism in many families.
Children with autism could have inherited a genetic code associated with autism, but this is what researchers are trying to identify. As it is the case with research evidence, some children have higher levels of susceptibility to autism than others that further suggest that a genetic relation remains a possibility. The presence of other medical conditions is greatly linked to the development of autism. Persons with certain medical conditions show higher levels of developing autism. These medical conditions include tuber sclerosis, untreated phenylketonuria, fragile X syndrome and congenital rubella syndrome (Benaron, 2009).
Medical evidence also suggests that the ingestion of certain harmful substances by pregnant women increase the risk of autism in children to be born. This demonstrates the genetic vulnerability of certain individuals towards autism. However, genetic projections are not in a position to solely explain why the rates of autism prevalence have increased. Another cause points to the environment as having a relation to the risk of autism. Medical research results show that environmental factors pose equal or more risk of autism as the case with genetic components.
For instance, a toxin in environments such as mercury or lead (heavy metals) increases the risk of autism. Current times have seen an increase in the presence of these toxins in the environment causing the frequency of autism to increase. Research has established that the disruption is the normal growth of children has the chance of starting in the mother’ s womb. This implies that the intake of these environmental toxins by the mother could end up transferring the effects to the unborn child. Other theories suggest that autism develops when the body produces antibodies inappropriately.
These antibodies end up attacking the brains of the young ones leading to autism. The validity of this theory is not widely considered. Abnormalities in the structure of the brain are also suggested causes of autism. Signs and Symptoms of Autism When a child fails to babble or demonstrates by gestures at 12 months of age, it could be a sign that the child has autism. Failure to speak by 16 months, maintain eye contact, make facials or react to anyone’ s facial expressions also signifies the onset of autism.
The loss of social skills or language is a prompt sign of autism in children. If a child does not voice a single word at the reach of 16 months and also fails to say phrases containing two words by the time 24 months pass, these are indicators of autism (Dodd, 2005). When a child is less than 3 years, symptoms of autism should have already set in. These symptoms tend to remain throughout the life of the affected. These symptoms include difficulties in verbal expressions and comprehension of verbal communication.
Additionally, persons with autism exhibit inability to engage in a conversation, difficulties making nonverbal expressions, playing with a toy in a manner that is not common, maintaining repetitive habits such as head banging and failure to adjust to new settings and social surrounding. A special case of autism known as autistic savantism has individuals excelling exceptionally in certain areas such as numbers, art or music. They perform the skills in which they excel without practice. Disease Process and Diagnosis The autistic condition is centrally from the abnormalities in the brain.
Available medical evidence suggests that the brain grows big, and the acceleration affects cognitive and language skills. Since the brain affects coordination too, voluntary movement is interfered with and so is the reaction. The numerous small brain cells contained in minicolumns of the brain of persons with autism causes a different reaction and perception in those persons. The same affect sensation. Proper autism diagnosis entails differential diagnosis, checking for related conditions, school evaluation and medical diagnosis. Treatment Though there is no cure for autism as of now, there are various steps that can be taken to take care of an individual with autism.
One of the most important steps is to engage individuals with autism in exercises. The activities not only improve body condition, they help them build their self-esteem and confidence while also creating a common activity for all to participate. Other treatment alternatives are nutritional therapy, occupational therapy, cognitive behaviour therapy, joint attention therapy and behavioural management therapy. Parents or guardians with autistic children need to keep in touch with medical experts so that they can have updated knowledge on how to deal with those children (McCarthy, 2007).
Caring for children or grownups with autism requires a team approach that is well coordinated to achieve results. Autism prognosis A level of independence is not out of sight for persons with autism. With appropriate treatment and early intervention, persons with autism can life expectancies that are normal. This is so because symptoms of autism are effectively managed or reduced. However, there are individuals with autism that require attention throughout their lives. A better prognosis can be predicted for an IQ that is above 50, the presence of a useful skill and speaking before six years.
In comparison to earlier times, people with autism can exist better in modern days. Conclusion Autism needs to be determined early. When a determination is done, the appropriate medical reaction can be taken to manage the condition. Autism does not necessarily spell dull times throughout the life of the affected persons.
Benaron, L. D. (2009). Autism. Westport, Conn.: Greenwood Press.
Dodd, S. (2005). Understanding autism. Marrickville, N.S.W.: Elsevier.
McCarthy, J. (2007). Louder than words: a mother's journey in healing autism. New York: Dutton.
Yapko, D. E. (2003). Understanding autism spectrum disorders frequently asked questions. London: Jessica Kingsley.