7 thoughts on “5 Reasons Autism Rates Are on the Rise

  • March 21, 2019 at 4:09 am

    Besides better diagnosis I think environmental factors play a role in autism prevelance but not environmental poisoning one thinks of when thinking of environmental factors but society becoming more austism unfriendly.

    More ways for sensory bombardment.

    More group work and networking skills required now. In the past being an “eccentric loner” was expected for certain jobs. The computing field once considered a home for people with autistic traits is all about SOCIAL media.

    Multitasking on steroids expected not good for people with executive dysfunction issues a common comorbid of autism.

    Helicopter and snowplow parenting. Related to above they plan every minute of the their kids day. In the free range parenting era I grew up in we had to figure out who we were, what worked and what did not work for us.

    Technology creates less opportunity for Autistic and NT alike to learn social skills.

    The above does not mean that there were less autistic people in days gone by. I believe it means that many autistic people who struggled but got by in 1969, do not or would not have the skills to function in society, today. They are “impaired” enough to be diagnosed.

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    • March 21, 2019 at 11:42 am

      I don’t disagree with you. The high sensory input, high-intensity, task-switching world in which we live does make it harder to be autistic. It also makes it easier to isolate, to become sedentary, and to accept a lifestyle that isn’t self-satisfying or self-sufficient.

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  • March 21, 2019 at 11:28 am

    Like it or not, you don’t get to decide whether or not there should be a cure. That decision needs to be up to every individual whom to decide if they want to be autistic or not. I’m autistic and i’m one of those folks who wants a cure.

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    • March 21, 2019 at 11:40 am

      This is why I said, “My hope” and not “The hope of every single autistic.” I’m not sure why you thought I saw myself as the spokesperson for all autistics; however, the vast majority of autistic adults do not want to be “cured.” I hate that you feel that way, but I understand. Autism is not something that can be cured, though therapies could make the negative symptoms easier to manage. A “cure” would mean to rewire the brain, to develop certain parts more thoroughly and to reduce development of other parts, to increase neural connectivity to some cortices and reduce it to others.

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      • March 27, 2019 at 2:47 pm

        I understand that you are not talking for all autistic people but the comment about “vast majority of autistic adults do not want to be cured” I am assuming means majority of autistic adults that can communicate and function in the world. I don’t necessarily want my 5 year old non verbal not potty trained not communicating child to be cured, but I would love to know that he can take care of himself in some way when he is an adult. I truly wonder how many parents really mean it when they say ” I wouldn’t change my child for the world”.

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      • March 29, 2019 at 3:01 pm

        I was not able to control my bladder at five. My husband, a genius, is often non-verbal. I have friends who are scientists and high-power professionals who have to wear adult diapers. Not being able to control or coordinate our internal functions on the same developmental timeline (and sometimes, ever) is not a sign that someone isn’t capable. By adulthood, most of us are able to read and type, even if we can’t coordinate the muscle and nerve movements to move our mouths. I don’t mean to downplay your fears, nor to say that you’re wrong in having those concerns. There are a lot of “level 3” or those people qualify as “severe” adults who blog about how, yes, the autistic adults who are better capable to communicate verbally and in text do represent their wants and needs.

        We definitely want therapies, interventions, medications, and treatments which help to alleviate the undesirable symptoms and co-morbid conditions which cause so much difficulties for individuals. We don’t want an autism cure, though. Some of us do, but fewer than 10%.

        If you’d like to email me, I can plug you into a lot of resources and places where you can talk to autistic adults. This article, written by an adult who grew up as a child who was thought to be intellectually impaired, is quite a good read if you’re interested.

        https://theaspergian.com/2018/12/02/growing-up-with-selective-mutism/

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    • March 21, 2019 at 1:49 pm

      I think the “cure” if it happens would come from either ABA or gene editing technology.

      ABA is designed to rewire the brain to get the desired behaviors. A person’s wiring based on genetic predisposition happens most rapidly in the first few years of life. Theoretically, if one could intercept or deflect the brain from wiring itself autistic in the early stages of life one could prevent a person from becoming autistic. IMHO that it the reason for the massive push for early diagnosis and interventions.

      A lot of research has gone towards figuring out the genetics of autism presumably with the idea that if you knew your kid was going to become autistic you could abort. This has not worked out, there are too many genes interacting in too many ways. CRISPR-CAS 9 technology has the ability to edit multiple genes at once thus could theoretically cure autism.

      It might be illegal to force a cure but in reality, I think it would truly not be voluntary. For example, if you do not take the cure we triple your insurance rates or do not insure you at all. Same thing for employment. Benefits would be cut off, after all, why should hardworking taxpayers pay people who want to be that way? Peer pressure on parents who refuse to cure their kids would be immense. Refusing a cure could be seen as a sign of a mental disorder. As the autistic population shrinks the neurodiversity/Autistic Rights cause will become more and more marginalized. Autistics won’t disappear there will always be contrarians but they will be a morbid curiosity like the Amish in Pennsylvania.

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