This is a JAMA study that states: the rate of autism in the United States has stabilized since 2014 after the disturbing peak of the 2000s. Excellent news, but it must be analyzed in a very simple way so that even more active screening campaigns are organized in our country. Because early screening is gaining crucial years for effective treatment.
In France, autism affects hundreds of thousands of people, children and adults alike. The symptoms appear very early, but usually go unnoticed. So the diagnosis is often made very late, too late! On average only after the age of 3 or 4 years, and it delays all the support.
In the United States, the problem has preoccupied the health authorities for a long time. We need to have this notion in mind to understand the figures given by the study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, JAMA, January 2, which reports this stagnation of the frequency of the disease in the United States after a very significant increase from 2000 to 2010. An increase that worried public health officials in this country, especially since it did not seem related to a clear change in lifestyle of children or pregnant Americans. The hypotheses, even the most far-fetched, had been studied but nothing justified this increase.
It seems that the explanation is more rational and especially positive: The specialists of this disease insisted a lot on the importance of the early detection to help the insertion of these children in the real life. Their message was heard in the late 90s and more and more effective screening campaigns were undertaken ... And when we search, we find ... Adage verified. The number of autistic screened at first considerably increased, and now, very naturally it stabilizes .... It is therefore in the screening that I play the first act of this disease and we can rely on patient associations, very active in France, to find there an additional motivation to raise public awareness.
There are different degrees of autism.
Autism is 3 categories of signs: difficulties to communicate, to establish social links; the children seem isolated in a kind of inner world. And behavioral disorders often difficult to analyze because all those who are told, repetitive gestures, stereotyped, or cries are real but late
To date, there is no blood test or radio test to detect autism.
One piece of advice, however, that can lead to a new examination, called Eye tracking - the analysis of eye movements, which shows whether the baby, facing an adult who speaks to him, looks at his mouth , his eyes, his nose or the surrounding objects. If you find that your child is avoiding the look, if he has a behavior that you feel is "abnormal", talk to your doctor. He may ask for this promising test that is still under study.
A serious illness.
It is often almost impossible to communicate. Today, there are no drugs. On the other hand, many exercises to be done, which delay the aggravation and could allow a better socialization.
This is too often insufficient, to the great despair of parents and their relatives who sometimes live a real ordeal due to the lack of adequate structures for the educational, educational, social and therapeutic care of their children. One may be surprised that there is no clear rule and that the decision for example for a school depends on the principal or even the teacher. And it is all the more regrettable that the examples of successful integration are more numerous than the failures and that this can be enriching for everyone. However, associations of parents and professionals have been created to support autistic people and their families with educational support and support for families.
There are many children with autism who are above average in intelligence. The notion of repetitiveness of words or actions that the cinema is extremely fond of - remember Rain man - is one of the features; This does not prevent them from having trouble communicating. And at a time when communication is everywhere, it's a serious handicap.
We do not know the cause, or the causes, but we feel that we are approaching because the chemistry of the brain gradually reveals its secrets. Autism is thought to be a disorder of the early stages of brain development.