AUTISM: Out of the Darkness Other Avenues #2
Many people are unaware of what autism is, however it is becoming more recognized since the disorder is on the rise. The movie "Rainman" introduced the public to autism and some of the unique challenges it brings.
KVCR-TV, a PBS affilicate for Southern California, produced this one-hour program highlighting some of the many therapies, interventions and medical options available for those living with this disorder. AUTISM OUT OF THE DARKNESS: OTHER AVENUES, was developed for parents, grandparents, caregivers, teachers, educators, the medical community and other professionals looking for options. The program does not advocate one therapy or intervention over another but merely provides alternatives and creates choices.
When a parent first receives a diagnosis from the medical community, often very little information is provide to the parents to what their next step should be. Many parents will delve into the subject and learn all they possibly can by searching the internet, attending conferences and seminars and grasping for all the information available. Other families, due to financial burden, child care responsibilities or other reasons, are not able to attend conferences and are not always as informed. This documentary is an effort on the part of KVCR-TV to follow its mission of education, making this information available to viewers.
The program was produced by a mother with an 8-year-old autistic son. She knows first hand the challenges, stress, frustrations and joys that come with raising an autistic child.
Autism is a neurological disorder that usually strikes in the first two years of life. It can cause severe impairment in language, cognition and communication. Other behaviors include lack of eye contact, lack of social interaction, repetitive behavior, a rigid need for routine, severe sensory dysregulation, eating disorders, sleeping disorders, and in many cases gastrointestinal symptoms. Half of all autistic children will never learn to speak.
Parents have come a long way and are making great strides with their children through early intervention programs. The key to battling this disorder is early detection. The earlier interventions are initiated the better the autistic child's outcome may be. Autism can be treated and a child with autism can learn.
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