Letters to the Editor

Autism on the rise

Thursday, August 09, 2012    

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Dear Editor,

Autism is a neural disorder whose origin is still unknown.

An autistic child will remain autistic for the rest of his life.

A director and scientist of the Biomedical Research Network Centre of Mental Health (Cibersam, Spain) affirms that autistic children suffer numerous alterations that affect their development from infancy. These effects are due to the neural disruption of the child from the very start.

Today, autism presents itself in one out of 250 children. In the 1970s, five children out of 10,000 were diagnosed as autistic. This means that there has been a 40 per cent increase during the last 35 years. However, not all experts agree on the causes of this disorder. A group of Norwegian researchers from the Haukenland University Hospital (Bergen) deny the existence of an "autism epidemic". See www.cda.org/popup/amalgam_spanish

It is crucial to have in hand all necessary tools and good judgement during the time of diagnosis in order to tackle and correct behaviour alternations derived from autism. Many parents are afraid of this moment. They become traumatised and lose the ability to confront the situation. They even begin to doubt that the life of their child will be a healthy one. Life, in whatever shape or form, is always a joy; existence is a divine gift.

Moreover, experts emphasise the importance of warning families about not undertaking any treatments without a scientific foundation, such as the consumption of Vitamin C mega-dosages, or the elimination of certain nutrients.

The Orange Foundation in collaboration with different associations specialising in autism, promote projects and initiatives aimed at integrating autistic children in today's society, a society that is going through a technological revolution. While learning, the children become familiarised with touchscreens and smart phones, which are specially made for them. See www.fundacionorange.es/

The Italian Father Galiani affirms that a child receives his or her entire education during the first years of life. However, we do not perceive such process in an explicit way, because the child has not yet developed the ability to speak.

According to the Spanish writer Azorín, when one, through violence, makes a child cry, one has already placed wrath, sadness, jealousy, vengeance, and hypocrisy in that child's soul.

Clemente Ferrer

Madrid, Spain

clementeferrer3@gmail.com

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