By Anne Dachel
Read Anne's commentary and view the links after the jump. The Dachel Media Update is sponsored by Lee Silsby Compounding Pharmacy and OurKidsASD, an online supplement retailer for patients with special needs.
A new study indicates that the number of autism cases in Australia is increasing among younger children.
Researchers from the Murdoch Children's Research Institute have found that 1.5 per cent of all 10 and 11 year olds have an autism spectrum condition, compared to 2.5 per cent of four and five year olds.
What is not clear is whether the condition is becoming more prevalent, or if it is simply being diagnosed more effectively.
Whatever the cause, experts say Australian schools need to prepare for an increase in autistic students. . . .
"What we're going to do is continue to follow this group to see whether or not it does represent a shift towards the younger diagnosis or whether or not diagnosis will continue to rise," she said. . . .
"I think the number diagnosed is definitely going up, that's pretty much beyond dispute... and I think we are also getting better methods of diagnosing children," he said. . . .
He argues that one possible reason autism cases have risen is that it is being bred into the population.
"It comes back to the issue of why the incidence of autism is probably increasing and it's probably that people who carry the genetic tendency are getting together with people who also have similar genetic tendencies and that's called assortative mating."
Schools must prepare for the increase in children with autism
Experts say the education system needs to be prepared for a growing number of students with autism. . . .
"And then, as they leave school, we have to be thinking about how we can support them from transition from probably a pretty supportive environment out into the adult world, we need to have programs to assist them in that transition. . . .
"They really do want the same things as anybody else, they just need a little bit more help and guidance in getting there."
I'm having a hard time understanding this latest piece from the Australian Broadcasting Corporation: The autism rate for 4 and 5 year olds is now one in 40 in Australia. And for 10 and 11 year olds, the autism rate is one in 67. No one can explain the difference, but no one is worried either.
The standard "better methods of diagnosing children" is given as the possible reason AND something called "assortative mating," which seems to mean that genetically alike people are reproducing genetically impaired children.
Over 20 years ago the definition of autism was expanded to include ASPERGER'S SYNDROME. We're constantly told that this is the reason that the rate never stabilizes. With every increase in the rate, it's always better diagnosing and a broader definition. So just how smart are doctors going to get? And why can't they ever find as much autism among grown ups?
What's going on in Australia? It seems there's a lot more autism among the YOUNGEST CHILDREN THEY LOOK AT.
MEANWHILE HERE'S AUSTRALIA ON VACCINES:
Australia didn’t want Dr. Sherri Tenpenny coming there to speak on vaccines.
Australia has recently cracked down on religious exemptions.
And Australia has tied welfare payments to vaccine compliance.
Someone needs to explain to us how come schools will be dealing with MORE STUDENTS WITH AUTISM. (See the recent hype over Steve Silberman's book, Neuro Tribes, that promotes the idea that autism has always been around and all we need to do is accept it.) So....for some unknown reason, more kids with autism are expected in schools in Australia. PREPARE FOR AUTISM! Kids who can't behave, can't learn normally, and many who can't even speak.
The disorder with no known cause or cure, that may or may not be increasing, will be having a greater impact on schools.
I couldn't help notice the comment by one of the researchers that they were going to keep on studying these children to see 'whether or not diagnosis will continue to rise.' I really feel that would be a waste of time. I can guarantee that no matter how much autism might increase, no one will ever admit that the statistic represents a true increase in the number of affected children.
The Dachel Media Update is sponsored by Lee Silsby Compounding Pharmacy and OurKidsASD. Lee Silsby is one of the most respected compounding pharmacies in the country and is committed to serving the needs of the Autism community. OurkidsASD is an online retailer for nutritional supplements for patients with special needs. OurkidsASD carries thousands of products from more than 60 brands and offers free ground shipping on all orders.
Anne Dachel is Media Editor for Age of Autism and author of The Big Autism Cover-Up: How and Why the Media Is Lying to the American Public, which is on sale now from Skyhorse Publishing.