Table Of Index
What is autism?
Autism spectrum disorder or ASD is a developmental disability due to differences in the brain. Individuals with ASD mostly face problems with social communication, interaction, and repetitive or restricted behaviors or interests. Persons with ASD might also have different ways of moving, leaing, or paying attention. Some people without ASD may also show some of these symptoms. However, for people suffering from ASD, these characteristics may make life challenging. Autism spectrum disorder starts in early childhood and finally causes issues functioning in society. Some children develop normally during the first year, and then go through a phase of regression from 18 to 24 months of age when they show autism symptoms.
People with autism may often have issues with leaing. Their skills may develop unevenly. They, for example, could have trouble communicating but be good at music, math, art, or things which involve memory. So, they may do especially well on various tests of analysis or problem-solving.
Causes and Symptoms
Below are the tests to diagnose autism:
Developmental screening: The doctor screens a child for developmental progress during routine visits. Doctors recommend standardized autism-specific screening tests at the age of 18 and 24 months. The specialist conducts tests like hearing test to assess deafness or difficulty hearing to find if there is any physical reason for observed behaviors.
Comprehensive behavioral evaluation: One of the steps for autism diagnosis is a physical as well as neurologic examination. This may involve a team of specialists such as child psychologists and developmental pediatricians. The evaluation might also involve screening tools. There are several various developmental screening tools. A combination of several tools is used for an autism diagnosis.
Genetic testing: There are several genes as well as environmental factors that can contribute to Autism. Certain laboratory test can be done for some biomarkers that are thought to be indicators for Autism. Doctors look for common genetic contributors. An atypical result of these genetic tests shows that genetics contributed to Autism.
Self Tests: Self-screening tools for autism are questionnaires designed for people thought to be affected by the condition. Most of questionnaires are available online for free. Although these tests can’t confirm an autism diagnosis, they can help decide if the person needs to see a professional to be evaluated formally.
Neuropsychological Testing: The neuropsychological evaluation involves achievement and cognitive testing, as well as some specialized testing of attention, memory, and executive function, to evaluate the child’s abilities as well as deficits in communicating and leaing.
Hearing and Vision Screening: The doctors might also conduct some tests to rule out vision and hearing problems that might be causing symptoms, which are similar to that of autism. The doctor could test a child’s vision and hearing with visual and auditory exams.
Risk & Complications
A person with autism may experience sensory problems, mental health disorders, seizures, or other complications.
Mental health issues: Having autism puts an individual at risk of anxiety, depression, impulsive behavior, as well as mood swings.
Sensory problems: A person with ASD might be sensitive to sensory input. Things such as loud noises and bright lights can cause significant emotional discomfort. Moreover, the affected person may not respond to some sensations like extreme heat, cold, and pain.
Seizures: Seizures are observed common among persons with ASD. They begin in childhood or during teenage years.
Preparation of Treatment
If you suspect your child may have autism, seeking autism assessment from a qualified doctor is the first step for diagnosis and treatment. Below are the steps to prepare for an autism assessment:
Gathering Medical History: Before assessment, you should gather all relevant medical history, such as past diagnosis, evaluations, and medical/mental health conditions.
Complete Questionnaires: The assessing expert might ask you to complete questionnaires to collect additional information regarding functioning and symptoms.
Research Qualified Specialists: It is crucial to seek an assessment from a qualified professional like clinical psychologists or psychiatrists with experience in autism assessments. You may ask for referrals from primary care physicians for a list of network professionals.
Understanding the Assessment Process: Before starting the assessment, tell the assessing expert what to expect during an assessment.
Best Hospitals for Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) Treatment
How to prevent autism?
Although doctors are not fully sure what causes autism, they know what actions can raise the possibility of diagnosis later in a child's life. Here are some ways to prevent the risk of autism.
Avoid smoking and drinking: Tobacco and alcohol put strains on an adult body. These may lead to hypertension, heart problems, high blood pressure, lung damage and liver problems. For a child in their fetal stage, these things can result in birth defects, heart problems in children, and autism.
Eat well: Women must follow a balanced diet that does not have much unhealthy foods, sugars and fat. While there are no specific food that causes autism, women can lower the chances of the condition by maintaining a diet, which is rich in vitamin and has a good quantity of fiber and vegetables.
Vaccinations: Some vaccines like MMR have been found to be associated with autism. Women must ask the doctor whether any vaccine is set to be taken before they conceive or just immediately after knowing about upcoming pregnancy.
Getting preexisting conditions treated: Women with some diseases must speak with the doctors to check whether any medications they take will affect their children. Moreover, medications must be halted if it is likely to harm a child's brain development.
Avoid airboe chemicals: Pollution can adversely affect pregnant women. Airboe particles are difficult to detect as certain chemicals considered harmful have no taste or smell.
Live healthy: Eat well-balanced meals, have regular check-ups, as well as exercise. Make sure to have proper prenatal care, and take recommended supplements and vitamins.
Educational therapies: Children with autism are found to respond well to structured educational programs. Such programs generally include a team of doctors with some activities to improve social skills, behavior and communication. Preschool children who receive individualized behavioral interventions show good progress.
Medications: Some medications can help control symptoms. Certain medications can be prescribed if the child is hyperactive. Severe behavioral problems are used to treat antipsychotic drugs and antidepressants are used for anxiety. However, some medications may interact, leading to serious side effects.
Family therapy: Parents and family members can interact with their children to manage problem behaviors, promote social interaction skills, and teach living skills as well as communication.
Behavior and communication therapy: Many programs are aimed at addressing the range of language, social and behavioral difficulties linked with autism. Certain programs focus on reducing problem behaviors and knowing new skills.
Occupational Therapy: This treatment helps a child lea life skills such as feeding, dressing themselves and bathing. The skills are meant to help them live independently.
Speech therapy: This therapy teaches verbal skills which can help the patient communicate beer. It is generally done with a speech-language pathologist and occupational therapist. This can help children improve the rhythm of their speech. The therapy can help children improve ways of communicating about thoughts and feelings.
Sensory integration therapy: Individuals with autism are unusually affected by sensory inputs like sound, sight, or smell. Social integration therapy depends upon the theory that amplification of some of the senses makes it difficult to lea and show positive behaviors.
Cost of the treatment
The cost of autism treatment in India is much affordable and vary depending on several factors like the severity of the condition, the duration of hospitalization, the type of treatment required, the geographical location, and the person’s insurance coverage. The cost of autism treatment in India starts from $2,000 to $5,000. Low autism treatment price in India is one of the main reasons why a large number of inteational patients travel to the country to seek treatment for the condition.
Recovery from Autism Syndrom
Autism recovery is a process involving addressing the underlying causes of the condition and implementing various interventions to improve symptoms. There are some common signs that may show a positive response to treatment. With the progress of the treatment plan, the patient may start to show improvement in their communication ability. They may also start to show increased interest in interacting and socializing with others. During recovery, there may be a reduction repetitive behavior and an increase in purposeful actions.
Award-winning CEO of Marlin Medical Assistance Pvt. Ltd
Dr. Mohammad Afzal Siddiqui is an award-winning CEO of Marlin Medical Assistance Pvt. Ltd., a professionally managed medical tourism holding company and the active Director of Alshifa Healthcare Services Pvt. Ltd., a full-service medical tourism aggregation agency servicing JCI and NABH/ NABL accredited Hospitals across the country’s 5 locations.
In addition to Marlin, Alshifa also includes Media Group, which houses Arabic Medical Tourism e-Magazine healthandtour.com. The E-magazine “مجلة الصحة والسياحة” provides a wide scope of medical tourism information to healthcare travellers to find a safe, effective and cost-saving solution for their medical and healthcare needs. In addition to running E-Magazine, Dr. Mohammad Afzal also serves as Delhi-state coordinator in Foundation of Healthcare and Wellness Promotion focused on bringing India’s Healthcare closer to the world and smoothen world’s access to Indian Healthcare.