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Dachel Media Review: Self Advocating, Sound Sensitivity

Online newsBy Anne Dachel

Read Anne's commentary and view the links after the jump.

Jan 19, 2014, SILive.com: At one Staten Island middle school autistic students are speaking out for themselves

Jan 19, 2014, Scottsbluff (NE) Star Herald: The importance of child vaccines 

Jan 18, 2014, Akron (OH) Beacon Journal: Story time for Xavier: New monthly program aimed at kids with disabilities opens at library

Jan 18, 2014, CBS News: Why do some autistic children strongly react to noise?

Jan 17, 2014, TheStir.CafeMom: Still Think Vaccines Cause Autism? Watch This (VIDEO)

SILive.com

The transition into intermediate school is not an easy one for any student, but when the student is diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), the transition may be even more difficult.

Fortunately the Nest Program at Paulo Intermediate School, Huguenot, exists to help ASD students make a smooth transition into adolescence and the upper grades.

The program helps nurture ASD students so that they can feel at home in their school environment, "enabling higher-functioning students with ASD to have "the structure, support and services needed so that they can be successful in an inclusive setting in school and within their community," explained Jessica Jackson, assistant principal for special education at Paulo.

"Students in the program learn skills necessary to function socially, academically and behaviorally," she said.

This is great--don't get me wrong. My son could have been in a group like this when he was middle school age.

I'm sure they started this program three years ago BECAUSE THERE WERE SO MANY AUTISTIC STUDENTS AT THIS SCHOOL.

Notice this program is for"high functioning students with ASD." 

The message here is that it's okay to be different and ASD kids are not disabled. That might fly IF THIS WERE THE TOTAL PICTURE OF AUTISM, be it's not. I like to see a photo of the other students with autism in the school. The ones with helmets on and those who couldn't get up on a stage and read a poem.

I work with autistic kids who can't be left alone for a second. I know so many in the autism community whose children truly suffer with autism. They're violent. They're sick. They can't talk. They're in diapers as teenagers.

This is how the media likes to present autism. It makes the disorder seem normal. It's easy to believe kids have always been this way. These students look like they're happy, engaged, and pretty capable. Anyone reading this and seeing the photo can rest easy--autism isn't really anything to worry about. Let's just accept the idea that lots of kids are autistic---that's just the way it is.

I'm happy for these kids. I didn't leave a comment.

Scottsdale (NE) Star Herald

Misinformation and myths confuse parents about the safety and efficacy of vaccines.

"Vaccines in the U.S. are subject to stringent studies and regulations. No one gets an idea and sends it to market. There is a rigorous process before it's deemed safe," Preston said.

The controversy over thimerosal, a preservative once used in the MMR vaccine, and autism began with Dr. Andrew Wakefield in England who created a research study suggesting a link between the two.

Phony claims like the ones in this piece are proof that vaccine defenders don't know what they're talking about.  I posted comments.

Akron (OH) Beacon Journal

Xavier Stephens sat on the floor at the Northwest Branch Library in Akron and watched as bubbles gently fell toward him.

The 8-year-old boy, who has a mild form of autism, grabbed at the bubbles blown by branch manager Tricia Twarogowski at the end of the library's first Sensory Story Time on Saturday.

"Something about bubbles is very engaging for children," Twarogowski explained.

Xavier's mom, April Stephens of Copley Township, was thrilled with the class and said she'll bring him back to future programs aimed at kids with different abilities. . . .

Xavier was the only child to take part in the first hour Saturday. Eight children took part in the second hour. For each story time, librarians and volunteers read books, sang songs and played games together.

"Children with autism learn with music," said Stephens, a business development manager at Dominion East Ohio. She said her son, a third grader at Herberich Primary School, was diagnosed with autism at the age of 3. "To have a story told with music makes the story come alive."

Lisa Thompson, a Copley Township mom and program coordinator for the Autism Society of Greater Akron, said one of her twin boys is autistic, and sensory storytelling time will help many of the children who are nonverbal.

Some children have "meltdowns," she said, and as a result their families may avoid libraries "because the library is a quiet place and everyone must be quiet and sit still."

But Sensory Story Time doesn't have those kinds of restrictions, said Twarogowski, who has started similar programs in North Carolina and Cuyahoga County. . . .

Akron (OH) Beacon Journal

Xavier Stephens sat on the floor at the Northwest Branch Library in Akron and watched as bubbles gently fell toward him.

The 8-year-old boy, who has a mild form of autism, grabbed at the bubbles blown by branch manager Tricia Twarogowski at the end of the library's first Sensory Story Time on Saturday.

"Something about bubbles is very engaging for children," Twarogowski explained.

Xavier's mom, April Stephens of Copley Township, was thrilled with the class and said she'll bring him back to future programs aimed at kids with different abilities.

The library, at 1720 Shatto Ave., will host story hours on the third Saturday of every month at 10:30 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. The program is being funded with a $1,345 grant from the Akron Community Foundation's Millennium Fund for Children and in partnership with the Autism Society of Greater Akron and the Akron-Summit County Public Library.

Xavier was the only child to take part in the first hour Saturday. Eight children took part in the second hour. For each story time, librarians and volunteers read books, sang songs and played games together.

"Children with autism learn with music," said Stephens, a business development manager at Dominion East Ohio. She said her son, a third grader at Herberich Primary School, was diagnosed with autism at the age of 3. "To have a story told with music makes the story come alive."

Lisa Thompson, a Copley Township mom and program coordinator for the Autism Society of Greater Akron, said one of her twin boys is autistic, and sensory storytelling time will help many of the children who are nonverbal.

Some children have "meltdowns," she said, and as a result their families may avoid libraries "because the library is a quiet place and everyone must be quiet and sit still."

But Sensory Story Time doesn't have those kinds of restrictions, said Twarogowski, who has started similar programs in North Carolina and Cuyahoga County.

Actually the title of this is a misnomer. It's really about kids with autism having a Sensory Story Time where they can have meltdowns.

We now have Sensitive Santas at the mall, autism-friendly movie showings, and Sensory Story Time at the public library.

We're adjusting quite well to autism, don't you think? Of course we still don't know what causes autism and there's no hope for a cure, BUT WE'RE SO AWARE.

The really important part of this story is at the end.

Xavier's mom said that as far as her son's future is concerned, 'God only knows.'

Another mother her son's future is'a wonderful story that is yet to be written.'

Sadly, I have to go with Xavier's mother.

CBS News 

"Fascinating new insight into autism"

Dr. Jon LaPook: "A new study is shedding light on one of the key mysteries of the disorder: why some children have extreme reactions to noise.

"This is so interesting."

The research shows that, while most people see others talking in sync, for many kids with autism there's a delay between what they see and what they hear, causing them to see speech out of sync.

LaPook spoke to one of the researchers at Vanderbilt, who said that more than 90 percent of children with autism have some sort of "auditory processing delay." He explained that they are coming up with many ways to help these kids cope.

"What they're doing now is they've come up with these video games and other ways of trying to accelerate ... the auditory processing so that it gets in sync - it's out of sync like a badly dubbed movie," said LaPook. "I love this because they're finally getting down to the brain wiring and figuring out how can we actually figure out what's wrong and how to maybe kind of fix it."

Maybe the next study will be on hand-flapping....Then there's always spinning, echolalia, head banging, and for some poop smearing .....

LaPook, like all the network docs out there, denies a link between vaccines and autism. And of course he jumps on pretend science like this.

Ahhh....video games for autistic kids.

Actually I remember quite clearly my son John when he was little screaming and holding his ears when sirens would go off because, as he said, "It hurts."

My posted comment:

Dr. LaPook: "I love this because they're finally getting down to the brain wiring and figuring out how can we actually figure out what's wrong and maybe kind of fix it."

This CBS report tells us this is "fascinating new insight into autism."

Parents in the autism community may not share LaPook enthusiasm over this study. There's no mention of the rate, but currently in the U.S. one in every 88 or one in every 50 children (depending on which study from the CDC you care to believe) has an autism diagnosis. No one can tell us why. Officially there's no known cause or cure for autism. There's nothing a mainstream doctor can tell a new mother so that her child that was born perfectly healthy and is developing normally doesn't also suddenly stop talking, stop making eye contact, lose learned skills and regress into autism by age two. When that happens doctors have no answers.

LaPook may think someone is finally figuring out something about autism, but until we address what's making our kids sick and stop the epidemic, it really doesn't matter.

TheStir.CafeMom

Of course, it's more than a little brash. It is Penn & Teller after all. They aren't known for their subtle approach to anything. It's great the way they break down the argument in such a simple way. It's something everyone can understand. And even if you don't agree with them, you can't deny they do have some valid points. These inoculations were created for very important reasons.

Some anti-vaccine parents are mainly concerned about the MMR leading to autism. Yet others have taken it further, steering clear of all vaccines. I can't imagine putting my child at risk for polio, diphtheria, meningitis, hepatitis A, hepatitis B, whooping cough, roto virus, small pox, tetanus. Penn's questions sum it up perfectly. "We have vaccinations against all of them. Which side do you want your child to stand on?"

It really boils down to two things: whether you think there really is a risk of developing autism or, if you do believe it, is the possibility of your child getting a deadly, painful, preventable disease worth the risk.

The title of this stupid piece along with the vulgar, insulting video make no sense. It concedes the possibility AND we're told it wouldn't matter, a link to autism is acceptable because so many deaths have been prevented.

This is similar to a review on the movie, The Greater Good, in the New York Times, Sept 17, 2011, where readers were told, "While the film acknowledges that science has so far been consistent in its refutation of a vaccine-autism link, it fails to point out that even were such a link proved definitively, all that matters is that its victims number significantly fewer than those of the diseases vaccinations are designed to prevent."

Comments

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"Healthcare Workers Resisting Immunization."
http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/lawrence-solomon/canada-vaccinations_b_4593168.html

Apparently there are nursing and healthcare associations filing grievances in the wake of the mandatory vaccine policies being adopted AND nurses are beginning to cite current research which shows flu vaccines do not reduce death rates (as well as documented cases of damages- Bell's Palsy, narcolepsy etc.)

Also in the news lately, besides the cost estimation of raising a child with autism, we see a similar effort happening in the NHL- a doctor recently put a cost associated with all the injuries that high level players face. Concussions are costing 42 milliion per season. Having a cost attached to such things may ultimately be what helps to have people look into the situation a little more seriously. Let's hope so.

I'm over sixty and all my generation had our childhood infectious illnesses one at a time - this was considered a normal part of childhood. It was known in our generation that, occasionally, a child having had the measles would be left with a partial or, even more occasionally, total hearing loss in one or both ears. I can't prove my suspicions but I suspect that the impact of the live viruses of the triple vaccine MMR is causing the auditory nerve/s to become inflamed which causes a child's hearing to become sensitive to loud sounds rather than burning out. Is there any way of testing an ASD child's inflammatory levels regarding the auditory nerve/s?

My now adult ASD child had the MMR at sixteen months and promptly lost their developing speech. We have a copy of a child psychologist's report on a home visit/assessment where she recorded our child clamping their hands over their ears when water ran down a nearby wastepipe from upstairs. This was just before our child's third birthday.

When our child was about six years old they were tried out on de-sensitisation but the process failed because our child became non-compliant. At that time we were using industrial ear defenders to make it possible for our child to enter buildings with noisy surroundings.

I can't go into much detail (an adult's confidentiality) but noises continue to make our now adult child's life difficult for them and others around them; e.g. how do you stop gardeners using noisy machinery when they have every right?

BTW, I don't remember any of my classmates having enough hearing sensitivity that they had to cover their ears - does anyone of my age group remember having a friend with hearing sensitivity/hyperacusis?

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