World Autism Awareness Day April 2, 2011Posted by johnhemry in Uncategorized.
April 2 is World Autism Awareness day. The official current rate for births of children with autism in the US is one in every 110. For children born of families in the US military, the official rate is much worse, about one in every fifty-five births by latest count. For a long time the medical community was in denial about the rapidly increasing rate of births with autism, and even refused to consider research into the ailment. In the last few years, official recognition of the growing problem has finally come, and a lot of research is underway to find the cause of autism (though genetic research indicates there may be dozens if not hundreds of genetic markers). The children born at the beginning of the growing wave of afflicted children are now reaching adulthood, and while those at the high end of the autistic spectrum can live independently and achieve great things (as exemplified by Dr. Temple Grandin) those more severely afflicted require intensive support. If effective treatments are not found the costs of caring for so many adults with disabilities will cripple society. We need to find the means not only for stopping the rapidly growing numbers of births with autism, but also for allowing autistic children and adults to be self-sufficient and self-supporting. I’m the father of three children on the autistic spectrum. The youngest is almost fully recovered, but every thing we have tried for the older two has only produced limited success. My wife and I wouldn’t change those kids for the world, but we want them to be able to care for themselves someday. There are some strong indications that an auto-immune ailment is involved in at least some forms of autism (and many forms of auto-immune ailments like thyroid diseases and Crohn’s disease have been increasing in frequency in recent decades), but a lot more needs to be learned. There is still far too little research being conducted into treatments. We’re praying that answers are found sooner rather than later.