October Digest

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National News

How the World is Changing for Those with Autism
CNN – Because traveling the world is for everyone that means that none of us should be surprised to hear that those on the autism spectrum get itchy feet, too.

MPs Urge Action on Lengthy Wait for Autism Diagnosis
The Guardian – Parents of children with suspected autism are having to wait at least 44 months for diagnoses, prompting a cross-party group of more than 140 MPs to write to the health secretary, Jeremy Hunt, demanding urgent action.

Mom Uses Jimmy Fallon’s Contest To Send Powerful Message About Autism
HuffingtonPost – When Kate Swenson first heard of the contest being put on by Jimmy Fallon and Today Parents that required kids to say “mama,” she couldn’t help but realize that Cooper ― her 6-year-old son who has autism and is nonverbal ― wouldn’t be able to participate.

Autism Benefit To Air On HBO
DisabilityScoop – Some of the biggest names in comedy are coming together for a nationally-televised event, all to raise money for schools, programs and services for those on the spectrum.

 


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Research

This is How Much of Autism is Genetic
TIME – For a condition as complex as autism, it’s almost certain that both genes and environment play an important role. But teasing apart how much DNA contributes to the developmental condition and how much is due to environmental exposures remains a subject of much debate.

Late Birth Linked to Risk of Autism with Intellectual Disability
Spectrum – Children with autism who were born late are more likely to also have intellectual disability than those with autism who were born at term, suggests a study of almost half a million people.

Multivitamins in Pregnancy May be Linked to Lower Autism Risk in Children
MedicalXpress – Taking multivitamins during early pregnancy may be associated with a reduced risk of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) in children compared with mothers who do not take multivitamins, finds a study published in The BMJtoday.

 

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Education

New System to Help Children with Autism Learn Better in a Classroom Setting
Autism Parenting Magazine – It’s common for children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) to experience sensory overload or adverse reactions to sensory input more often than their neurotypical classmates.

College Students with Autism Need Support to Succeed on Campus
Spectrum – For a time, Nikki Lower had all the help she needed. Although she often felt she “didn’t quite fit in” during high school, she worked hard and excelled academically.

 

Technology

The Party: A Virtual Experience of Autism – 360 Video
The Guardian – What is it like to be autistic? The Guardian’s latest VR film offers a glimpse of how a person on the autism spectrum copes with a stressful environment

Temple Technology Advances Autism Therapy
Temple University – As an innovator, John Nosek is driven by the desire to help children born with developmental delays. It’s because he knows what’s possible with early intervention.

 

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Teens & Adults

Many Young Adults With Autism Also Have Mental Health Issues
NPR – College involved “many anxiety attacks and many trips home” for Daniel Share-Strom, an autistic 27-year-old motivational speaker in Bradford, Ontario.

 

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September Digest

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National News

The Police Need to Understand Autism
The New York Times – Now that we know that autism is common, and comes in all the hues and shades of a broad human spectrum, we need to give law enforcement officers the knowledge that they need to avoid turning a routine call into a life-altering calamity.

Is Hollywood’s Portrayal of Autism Fair? 
DisabilityScoop – With more characters with autism appearing in film and on television, a new study is questioning whether such representations are good or bad for people with the developmental disorder.

Nowhere to Go: Young People with Severe Autism Languish Weeks or Longer in Hospitals
The Washington Post – Teenagers and young adults with severe autism are spending weeks or even months in emergency rooms and acute-care hospitals because of a lack of community treatment programs able to deal with their outbursts, according to interviews with parents, advocates and physicians from Maine to California as well as federal and state data.

Disability Advocates Arrested Protesting Medicaid Cuts
DisabilityScoop – Over 100 disability rights advocates were arrested while protesting Medicaid changes in a proposal to overhaul the nation’s health care system. Hours later, the GOP plan appeared doomed.

 


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Research

Anxiety May Alter Processing of Emotions in People with Autism
Spectrum – A brain region that processes emotions, including fear, tends to be smaller in children who have both autism and anxiety than in those who have autism alone, according to a new study

New Findings on Probiotics and Autism: What You Need to Know
AutismSpeaks – Over the last week, many of you have read headlines about a promising probiotic that might help people who have autism. 

 

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Education

Back to School, Back to Planning for Kids with Autism, ADHD
MedicalXpress – The start of a new school year isn’t always easy, especially for kids with developmental and behavioral issues, such as autism and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder.

What This Mom Wants You to Know About Autism
Refinery29 – On August 24, Cara Thulin wrote an open letter to the students and teachers at her son Zeke’s new high school explaining that he might seem as if he’s not paying attention to them or maybe even being rude, but that’s because Zeke has autism — and what he really needs is for them to be kind and patient.

 

Technology

A Robot Designed to Help Kids with Autism Learn Social Cues
Co. Design – A Cornell University professor has partnered with Google to develop robots that help children with autism learn to react emotionally in social situations.

 

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Teens & Adults

Adolescents with Autism Need Access to Better Sex Education
Spectrum – For adolescents, learning how to navigate sex and sexuality can be a minefield. This path is especially fraught for adolescents with autism.

Mom Helps Son with Autism Fulfill His Dream of Starting a Bakery
Today – As Jacob Wittman faced the completion of his high school years, his mother Shelly Henley met the milestone with an unexpected feeling: complete dread.

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