When Eugen Bleuler, a renowned Swiss-German psychiatrist, first identified autism in 1911, people spread many myths about the neurodevelopmental disorder. Today, despite the tremendous progress made in the field of neurodevelopment, countless myths about autism still exist. Here are the top six myths and misapprehensions about autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and facts to counter them.
The initial studies of autism prevalence in the US revealed that there were 2 to 4 cases of autism in every 10,000 children. Today, 1 out of every 54 children is diagnosed with autism, according to a recent prevalence report released by CDC.
The startling spike in ASD cases has led many people to speculate that it could be an ASD outbreak that’s quickly spreading across the country, but this is not true. The cause for increased numbers of autism has not been confirmed. However, one theory is that it is due to increased awareness, screening and diagnostic material.
This misconception was busted in the 1950s, but it’s still alive today. The myth suggests that unhealthy parenting styles, such as neglectful parenting and overprotective parenting, can cause ASD.
The medical community doesn’t know the actual cause of ASD, but no scientific evidence has been found that links poor parent-child relationships with ASD.
Children with ASD can learn, and they’re particularly successful if their parents provide them with the right support and a suitable environment. Enrolling in an autism parent training program is one of the proven ways to improve your child’s learning skills.
An autism parent training program can also equip you with skills you need to improve your child’s communication skills, independence, coping skills, and play skills. Before you choose an autism parent training program, however, you need to get answers to the following questions:
The answers to these questions can help you choose a training program that is tailored to your child’s needs.
Some activists say that vaccines are the primary cause of ASD. The activists cite a 1998 report which suggested that antibody-stimulating ingredients and polysaccharides in MMR vaccines can cause ASD and other neurodevelopmental disorder. But nothing could be further from the truth.
Several gold-standard scientific studies have since examined hundreds of vaccines, and they have found no evidence that supports the claim that vaccines contain harmful elements that can cause the autistic disorder.
This is not true. Although some ASD individuals exhibit aggressive behaviors, most individuals with ASD rarely cause harm to other people. What’s more, destructive behavior from autistic individuals is often directed toward themselves rather than toward others.
People with ASD can appear detached, but that doesn’t mean they don’t have emotions. They experience emotions. The problem is that they generally don’t know how to communicate their emotions, and this may create an impression that they are emotionless. However, some can be taught to read body language of others to help them navigate the emotional realm.
Does your autistic child struggle with their emotions? Worry not. Professionals can help train your child on how to not only express their emotions but also recognize and interpret other people’s expressions.
There you have it: the top six myths about autism that you can scratch off your list. If you have an autistic child, to learn more about autism and equip yourself and your loved ones with practical ASD parenting skills and behaviors. Don’t walk the journey alone; contact us to find out how we can help.