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What is Autism?
According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Autism affects 1 in every 68 births and about 1 percent of the world population. Autism or Autism Spectrum Disorder is a mental condition that affects how a person interacts with other people and his or her environment. ASD is often characterized by difficulty in:
- Forming social skills
- Repeated behaviors
- Problems in speech and nonverbal communication
The term ‘spectrum’ refers to the different kinds of challenges and strengths that each person with autism may face. There are many types of autism, which caused by various combinations of genetics and environmental factors.
Some of the signs of autism tend to show in children ages between 2 to 3 years old. This means a diagnosis can come as early as 18 months old and possibly earlier for certain developmental delays.
Common Early Signs of Autism:
- Avoiding eye contact and choosing to be alone
- Problems communicating with other people
- Difficulty understanding other people’s feeling
- Has delayed language (verbal) development
- Repeating words or phrases
- Easily distracted by slight changes in their environment or routine
- Has very limited interests
- Doing odd behaviors like rocking, spinning, or flapping
- Reacts unusually to loud sounds or reactions
- Has strong responses to different lights, colors, textures, and tastes
Early Diagnosis is Key in Treating Autism
Early diagnosis is the key to treating autism in young children. Getting the right help as soon as possible can lead the person to living a full life. The main goal of the treatment is to develop the overall function of the person and improve their social skills.
Today, there are several treatments available to help people with autism cope up with their daily lives. These include the following:
- Specialized therapies like speech, occupational, and physical therapy
- Community support and parent training
- Behavioral training and management
Advancements in Medical Science
Today, experts are considering the use of TMS treating people with autism. Even with limited participants, the use of TMS therapy in treating autism already shows great promise. However, using TMS therapy for patients is not likely to treat the overall condition.
Nonetheless, TMS may help improve certain symptoms associated with the disorder. Although it may sound like small progress, it can help in the most important factors when dealing with autism.
These clinical studies discovered TMS therapy can:
- Relieve symptoms of irritability
- lessen repetitive behaviors
- Improve hand-eye coordination
- Enhance social skills
Through these studies, researchers are discovering the effectiveness of TMS therapy in treating autism. TMS as a therapy has fewer risks compared to others and researchers continues to test the method’s boundaries. Today, there are several ongoing studies about the use of TMS therapy and its effect on autism.
Some of the known current studies in TMS therapy are searching for:
- The overall improvement of autism patients
- Considering the possible changes in social skills of people with autism
- Aiming to improve social skills of people with intellectual disability and autism
Several studies show that TMS can lessen some symptoms of autism. However, these studies primarily concentrate on TMS therapy and autism on verbal adults. In theory, the younger brain may benefit more from TMS. Hopefully, further studies can back up this theory.