Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Where do we go from here?

Upon getting the diagnosis, I instantly became Logan's advocate. I had to fight this battle for him. I set out to learn as much as I could about ASDs, especially about potential causes and alternative treatments.

My disclaimer: I am not a doctor. I am not a scientist. I am not an autism expert. These are mostly opinions based on the information I have read. I am simply a mom. Okay, now that we've cleared that up...Have you noticed that the autism is on the rise? One in 110 children are diagnosed with autism and one in 70 boys. What does this say? Do you honestly think it's strictly environmental factors? I personally do not. Look at the rise in vaccines. There is a vaccine for everything these days. 20 years ago there were ten vaccines. Today, there are 36! That's right, 36. Did you know that many vaccines use mercury as a preservative? Yep, because it's cheaper. No flu shots in this house thank you. (I choose to use natural methods of staying healthy. ie: supplements) Auto-immune issues are also prominent in ASDs . A lot of these kids were sickly babies. Logan in particular, had constant ear infections. He ended up getting tubes and had his adenoids removed when he was three. Glutathione is a natural anti-oxidant found in the liver and kidneys, it's a natural detoxifier. Many of these children are born with low levels of glutathione and have a weaker immune system and on top of that get a ton of vaccines at birth. Hmmmm. FYI: Tylenol depletes glutathione levels in the body. Never give your child acetaminophen (Tylenol) before a vaccine. Just to clarify, I am not anti-vaccine. I am anti-vaccine for what is unnecessary. Regular doctors won't tell you this.

Gastrointestinal problems are also common in children with ASD. Candida (yeast) overgrowth produces toxic byproducts, which can impair the immune system. Candida can also produce digestive enzymes that actually eat away the intestinal lining, allowing undigested food molecules to pass through into the bloodstream and cause food allergies. Many kids on the spectrum cannot properly digest gluten (wheat products) and casein (dairy products), which form peptides, which act like opiates in their bodies. These peptides can alter their behavior, perceptions, and responses to their environment. It is believed that peptides can trigger an unusual immune system response as well.

I wholeheartedly believe in biomedical and natural treatments. I am looking to take Logan to a DAN (defeat autism now) doctor, who takes a biomedical approach to treating autism. Along with conventional therapy, my son sees a chiropractor. Chiropractic helps boost the immune system. He gets regular adjustments and he likes it! He takes various supplements, melatonin to help with him sleep (this seems to be yet another problem with ASD), calcium, Omega-3, and probiotics (which are essential for eliminating yeast). We have also started him on a gluten free/casein free diet. Logan is still taking his Adderall, but he is on a lower dose. I hope to eliminate it altogether.

Logan been on the diet and supplements for three months now. All hail MELATONIN! That has helped a lot! As far as his behavior is concerned, it may be too soon to tell, but he isn't having the terrible temper tantrums like before. Progress comes in small steps.


  1. I worked with autistic kids when I was young and I learn more from you than I did from my superiors at the mental health authority. Your son is so fortunate to have you as his mother.

    I hope more people get themselves educated. You have so much information to offer.

  2. Good research, Shannon. I worked with autistic kids when I was a social worker (and they were some of my favorites!), and environmental factors can make a huge difference. For instance, I had one who was diagnosed developmentally delayed and once she was out of her (neglectful) home and in foster care, she was able to be mainstreamed within a school year! I know this is not an issue for you, but you are doing right by being his advocate and looking into everything you can do!

  3. Also, a note about Glutathione--be careful that whoever you are administering it to is not allergic to MSG or related seasonings; it can be converted into glutamate in the body. (I read that when looking into glutathione for myself while in chemotherapy). I'm allergic, and get terrible migraines, so just sure Logan doesn't have those issues.

  4. This is all very interesting and informative. I think it is amazing how much information you can find that we are never told and I applaud you SO MUCH for all that you are doing. You are amazing for that.

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