WHAT IS AUTISM/AUTISM SPECTRUM DISORDERS:
Autism spectrum disorder is a group of disorders which include autism, Asperger syndrome, pervasive developmental disorder not otherwise specified and childhood disintegrative disorder. Autism is a rare psychiatric neurological disorder, with an onset before the age of two and a half years of age, in childhood. Autism Spectrum Disorder is characterized by the following distinctive behavior:
Social interactions and relationships:
The failure to establish friendships with peers (children of the same age group) is very common. There is also a lack of empathy and interest in sharing emotions, concerns, achievements, thoughts & ideas with people. They also face difficulty in non-verbal communication skills which develop into distinctive problems such as eye-to-eye gazing, unusual facial expressions and body postures.
Verbal and nonverbal communication:
Autistic children display delayed/partial inability or total lack of speech. As many as 50% of autistic patients are unable to speak or communicate their feelings properly. They have great difficulty in initiating a conversation. Stereotyped and repetitive use of language is a prominent feature in autistic patients. People with autism often keep on repeating a previously heard word, phrase or sentence (echolalia).
Limited interests in activities or play:
An unusual focus on fragments: Younger children with autism often focus on toys by its part such as wheels of a toy car etc., rather than playing with the entire toy.
Preoccupation with certain topics:
For example, elder children and adults may feel fascinated by train schedules, weather patterns, or license plates. Autistic patients exhibit a strong, peculiar and compelling urge for timely occurrence of events in daily life. They need a regular pre-decided series of events to happen on an accurately timed basis in the same manner as previously registered and acknowledged by their understanding and memory. This stands true not only for important incidents or happenings in life, but also for menial affairs in routine life. Stereotyped behavior: A common feature seen in autistic patients is recurring unstable movements of the body like rocking the body and hand flapping.
Modern scientists are not certain about what causes autism but usually genetic factors and brain damage are considered as broad causes.
There are also a number of hypothesis for the cause of Autism:
- Brain impairment due to Mercury and other Toxic Metals.
- Viruses stored in the body because of Vaccines.
- Compromised Immunity because of Vaccines and Mercury.
- Yeast and germs built in digestive system because of Anti-biotic usage at early age.
- Consumption of intoxicants during pregnancy and feeding period
- Consumption of intoxicants during coition
- Excessive use of antibiotics during pregnancy and feeding period
- Use of oral contraceptives during feeding period.
CLASSIFICATIONS OF AUTISM
Since Autism is a spectrum disorder, it is difficult to classify Autism into demarcated categories of the Disorder. People suffering from Autism may share a common difficulty relating to communication ranging from acute to mild however, all other symptoms/features of the disorder vary from person to person and many of patients may undergo less in common among them. According to the severity of autism spectrum disorder in children, we can attempt to classify as follows:
Mild: A child is able to communicate verbally, sometimes in a distinctive language of his own, as per his age. He/she gets together with children perhaps ones who are not close but at a distance rather than the ones near him, participates in school activities with minimum support however, he/she faces difficulty in prevailing social pattern of interaction with surrounding children. Learning in school may be effectively done however extremity in sensory responses to situations may be seen. Also, he/she may display certain irregularities such as not playing with an earlier friend or acquaintance, feel weighed down or ignored by peers etc.
Moderate: A child may communicate verbally but not as per his/her age growth. Needs and wants may be expressed however it is very difficult for the child to keep up with the peers especially in a classroom which demands more complex communication and understanding. Though academically a child may be much better he /she may find it difficult to be included socially except in case of certain school setting where he/she would be tolerated. It is more likely for the child to be swept down emotionally due to frustration or non acceptance. In more severe cases, the child may ‘use’ repeat words, sentences or phrases he/she has heard before or those normally said by people close to him/her. Certain body behavior including noise-making, clapping of hands, uttering sounds from the mouth etc can lead to disturbance in collective activities in school and hence exclusion from social activities can happen.
Severe: In such situations a child cannot communicate effectively at all. Unmanageable behavior, violent reactions, aggression and/or self abuse may be seen. Intellectual challenges are typical and the child may not be able to function in any school structure. However, in smaller therapeutic settings the child may try to learn certain skills or develop new interests. Social interactions with peers are hardly possible. A child may feel unsafe in any social surrounding and prefer a known setting such as his/her own room/home.
Due to the uniqueness of every Autistic child, the above mentioned classifications may or may not clearly fit. The circumstances a child faces, his upbringing, his genetic traits, the extent of the disorder are some of the various factors determining the kind of Autistic disorder suffered by the child. The above information is given only to serve as a guideline to try and understand the level of challenges faced by an Autistic child in order to help in determining treatment and handling of the disorder by both parents and doctors.
LIMITATIONS OF MODERN MEDICINES :
In the allopathic system of autism management, the medicines given are antipsychotic and antidepressants. Antipsychotic drugs have various side effects like reduction/suppression of brain activity, suppression of intellect, sedation, muscle stiffness and abnormal movement. Antidepressants potentially increase the risk of suicidal thinking or attempts of suicide in children and adolescents.
SVHRC’s MISSION: “BETTER LIFE FOR AUTISTIC CHILDREN”.
A comprehensive research on herbal medicines for efficient management of Autism has been done by Shreevidya Herbal Research Centre. The research shows that in the herbal system of management, the treatment administered to a patient does not result in any adverse side effects. The herbal medicines neither suppress the brain activity nor have sedating effects or any muscle stiffness/abnormal movement or depression. Instead, herbal treatment cleanses the brain, keeps it fit and helps it to achieve normal functioning.
It has been observed that children of the age group from 3 to 12years of age show a remarkably excellent response towards the herbal formula “AUTOZONE”. It has been found that symptoms like fantasizing, self talk, attention problems, hyper acting and violent outbursts have reduced to more than 90%. Children have displayed enormous development in psychomotor skills in their body and have become almost normal and self-dependent. They have experienced sound sleep at night followed by a sense of renewed vigor and agility after waking up the next morning. The pattern and quality of their sleep has been regulated and they have developed the ability to quickly respond and react to things. Reasoning and thinking skills have been considerably developed leading to enhanced assimilation of situations in social spheres. It would not be an exaggeration to state that these children have become capable to adapt to the mainstream society.
Results with children with the age group of above 12 years have also been very promising. It has been observed that the results of the herbal treatment have reflected up to 80 to 85% improvement in the patients.
SVHRC believes in making life better for Autistic persons’ and this comes with the attitude where we are committed to the entire wellbeing of an autistic child/person and not just externally focus on autism.
THERAPEUTIC ASPECT AND TREATMENT PROTOCOL
Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is classified by Shreevidya Herbal Research Center, as a disease which is difficult to cure, but it can be managed favorably up to the age of 12 years. ASD is best treated in the early years (the sooner the better) as it is easier to reverse the pathology. As the ASD is diagnosed at the age of three, ASD can be successfully handled from approximately the time of its manifestation up to around twelve years of age. It has been observed that the response to treatment is better in cases of mild and moderate types of ASD and also in cases where psychotic drugs and sedatives have not been administered. Treatment becomes challenging in case of moderately severe and severe types of Autism.
It is observed that it takes years to bring the abnormal brain and nervous system back to normal. Hence, it is a very long term treatment
Behavioral therapy (uses rewards to teach expected or preferred behaviors),play or developmental therapy (uses play-based activities to build emotional and communication skill)speech therapy (with milder autism, speech therapy is usually related to conversation skills, body language, etc.),occupational therapy (often helpful for sensory issues),physical therapy (physiotherapy-many children with autism have low muscle tone or are physically clumsy) help autistic patients recover faster along with the administration of “Autozone”
It is very important to continue the treatment during the developmental age of the brain to get the best results.
During the treatment, each patient is advised to follow a specifically prescribed regimen for effective results of the medicines on the patient.
1. Regular dosage of “Autozone” herbal medicine as prescribed by the doctors at Shreevidya Herbal Research Centre. The dosage of “autozone” varies according to the age i.e., as the age advances, dosage is increased.
2. Patients are instructed to follow a strict diet and are advised not to modify the dosage of medicines, prescribed by SVHRC, in any manner. Patients are expected to strictly adhere to treatment protocol designed by doctors from time to time to ensure maximum successful recovery.
3. Diet for autistic persons:
Casein free diet: Avoid those food products which contain casein.
Milk, milk products and dairy products contain casein.
Gluten free diet: avoid all foods containing Gluten. Gluten is found in wheat, barley and rye. Avoid these food items.
Autistic persons are unable to digest the proteins namely casein and gluten.
Strict vegetarian diet is advised.
Avoid sugar/sugar items and sweets if the patient becomes hyper after having sugar.
4. Daily regimen:Physical exercise/physical play daily is a must for autistic children. Many a research has shown that Exercise / physical playing / thread mill walking/ swimming training/aerobic exercise significantly increases in fitness levels indicated by changes in balance, speed, agility, strength, flexibility, and endurance; can significantly decrease the frequency of negative, self-stimulating behaviors that are common among individuals with autism, while not decreasing other positive behaviors. Behaviors such as body rocking, spinning, head-nodding, hand flapping, object-tapping, and light gazing, that have been shown to interfere with positive social behavior and learning can thus be controlled by the use of exercise. Additionally, exercise can discourage aggressive and self-injurious behavior while improving attention span. Love and affection helps autistic children to become normal faster.
5. It is of utmost importance that patients under treatment from SVHRC should not take any other form of medicine without informing or without the consent of the doctors at SVHRC. Taking any other type of medicine while undergoing treatment could prove detrimental to the recovery of the patient since it could interfere with the functioning of the herbal medicines given by doctors at SVHRC and may cause adverse effects on the health of a patient.
A list of medicines that can be safely taken during the treatment, for all common, day to day illnesses will be provided to the patient by the doctors at SVHRC. This list would serve as a reference list for the patient in case of common ailments such as common cold, fever, gas, indigestion etc for medicines to be taken in concurrence with the doctors at SVHRC.
TESTIMONIALS FOR AUTISTIC PATIENTS TREATED AT SVHRC; ANOTHER FEATHER IN THE CAP!
My son Abhishek is 15 years old and was diagnosed with autism at the age of three in the year 2001. Since then he has been in behavioral training and has been availing special education. He was on allopathic medication “sizodon and inspiral” till last year which were prescribed to him by his psychiatrists as he showed a lot of inclination towards fantasizing, self talk, violent outbursts, engrossing in one activity over and over again, poor psychomotor skills, low attention span and poor concentration. Even though these medications helped him calm down, they highly affected his activeness making him lethargic, slow in grasping situations and sluggish in actions and reactions. Poor sleep and reduced sleeping time affected his overall personality and resulted in poor comprehension skills.
In 2014, we finally decided to stop the allopathic medication and started the herbal treatment under the supervision of Dr. Prasad at the Shreevidya Herbal Research Centre, Badlapur. The treatment included doses of AUTOZONE medicine and supervised nutrition and activities. These activities were mental as well as physical and have helped to improve his psychological condition and behavior patterns. In the span of one year he has shown many developments as mentioned below sans any observable side effect (with the exception of general teenage hormonal change issues that were observed).
- His fantasizing has reduced by 75%
- Self talk has reduced by 60%
- Attention span has increased by 80%
- Development in psychomotor skills which have made him more self dependant
- Comprehension, observation and social skills have been developed by 75%
- Sleep is regulated and quick response and reactions have been observed. He is fresh and active after a good night’s sleep.
- Better attention in classroom, self study and development in grasping new subjects.
- Reduction in hyper activity and violent outburst by 75%
- Reasoning skills and thinking skills developed to assimilate situations in social environment.
In the past four and half years he has joined the mainstream education and is studying a normal course of ICSE board in standard seventh. Though two years behind in the school standard as per his age, he shows tremendous interest in subjects like Science, Mathematics and History.
My son Vaishnav was diagnosed with autism at the age of three. He was absolutely dull and non-reactive, sometimes violent. Few months back when he was 5 years old, I happened to meet Dr. J. T. Prasad of the Shreevidya Herbal Research Center. After learning about the condition of Vaishnav, he advised me to switch to herbal medications and to start herbal treatment of Vaishnav at SVHRC.
Within a few months of the treatment at SVHRC, my son has overcome all problems of an autistic child and has become almost like any other normal child. I can confidently say that Vaishanav has recovered up to 90% . Now, I am advised to continue this treatment for my son till he turns 12 years old. This will help to keep pace with the final development of his brain and enable him to live life the way he deserves, without the fear of Autism.