Many of us here at Thompson Pharmacy have been personally affected by Autism. The increase in the number of children diagnosed with the disorder is evident within our own company as a growing number our employee's children have been diagnosed in the past few years. Autism is a sensory disorder, typically diagnosed in early childhood. In the past several years the diagnosis of Autism has come to be known as a "spectrum disorder" because the symptoms from one child to another can vary so widely. Children with less severe symptoms, or "high functioning", would be considered high on the spectrum with the ability to communicate their needs fairly well and be independent in many activities. Children with the most severe symptoms, or "low functioning", are considered low on the spectrum and cannot communicate or care themselves at all. Children with Autism have different way of processing incoming sensory information which can make them become frustrated at times and demonstrate behaviors that others would find odd. These can include repetitive behaviors or gestures to calm or soothe themselves or hurting themselves to express their feelings. Social situations and places with a lot of noise or movement can provoke "meltdowns" due to "sensory overload".
The cause of Autism is not known, and there is no cure. Behavioral therapy, medication management when needed, a strong support system and a team of professionals that are ready to help, can have a dramatic impact on a child's outcome. We at Thompson Pharmacy encourage you to speak to your child's physician if you suspect your child may be exhibiting some of the signs of Autism. Early diagnosis and treatment gives these kids the best chance for a bright future!
Below are some links that may help you learn more about this disorder.
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