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DESTROYING THE MYTHS OF AUTISM Presented by Wendy Fournier and Jo Pike.

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2 DESTROYING THE MYTHS OF AUTISM Presented by Wendy Fournier and Jo Pike

3 What exactly is autism? Autism is a bio-neurological developmental disability that generally appears before the age of 3. Autism is diagnosed four times more often in boys than girls. Autism impacts the normal development of the brain in the areas of social interaction, communication skills, and cognitive function. Individuals with autism often suffer from numerous physical ailments. Autism does not affect life expectancy.

4 Myth #1 Refrigerator Mother Theory Bruno Bettelheim Bettelheim believed autistic children did not feel loved by their mothers and retreated into a world of their own. X

5 Myth #2 No Emotion Children with autism and related disorders most definitely do have emotional feelings. Children with autism and related disorders are able to love and feel loved.

6 Myth #3 Your child needs a good spanking! Too Loud Too Crowded Too Bright

7 Myth #4 Youre born with autism. On average, autism is diagnosed at 44 months. Many children with autism met all of their developmental milestones before the age of 2 and suddenly regressed into autism.

8 Myth #5 Vaccines do not cause autism. A recent study shows that children receiving vaccines containing the preservative Thimerosal are many times more likely to develop autism than those who receive thimerosal-free vaccines. Thimerosal is 49.6% Mercury by weight. Mercury is the 2 nd most toxic substance on Earth and a known neuro-toxin. In the 1990s the number of required childhood vaccinations dramatically increased. So did the rate of autism. Please do your own research.

9 Myth #6 Individuals with Autism are Savants. It is not common for individuals with autism to be like Dustin Hoffmans character in Rain Man.

10 Myth #7 Autism is a Neurological Disorder Feeding Disorders Allergies Asthma Sleep disturbances Inflammatory bowel disease Food Sensitivities Epilepsy Digestive Disorders Persistent Viral Infections And more…

11 Myth #8 The increase in the rate of autism is due to better diagnosing. 10 years ago, the rate of autism was 1 in 10,000 births. Today it is 1 in 166. This is a 5,000% increase in 10 years. If this astonishing increase is due to better diagnosing, where are the thousands and thousands of adults with autism who should have received a diagnosis 10, 20 or 30 years ago? This leads us to…

12 Myth #9 Autism is a rare disorder. 1 in 166 children are now being diagnosed with autism. Every 16 minutes another child is diagnosed with autism.


14 1992 Baseline year

15 1994 0-30% 31-100% 101-300% >1000%

16 0-30% 31-100% 101-300% >1000%301-500% 501-999% 1996

17 0-30% 31-100% 101-300% >1000%301-500% 501-999% 1998

18 0-30% 31-100% 101-300% >1000%301-500% 501-999% 2000

19 0-30% 31-100% 101-300% >1000%301-500% 501-999% 2002

20 Over 2000% 2003 incomplete


22 Myth #10 There is no cure for Autism. Dietary intervention Nutritional supplementation Heavy metal chelation Anti-viral treatments Applied Behavior Analysis Auditory Integration Therapy


24 To learn more about autism and related disorders, visit

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