Today is World Autism Day and the month of April is Autism Awareness Month. I love this time of year when so much attention is given to autism yet at this point of time in our lives I am starting to feel that awareness is already here. Nowadays, everyone does know what autism is, most everybody knows of someone with autism. In my line of work we are seeing more and more kids being diagnosed with autism. Local public schools in this area are finally making programs specifically geared for children with autism.
Autism awareness was good when in the 70s it was 1 in 10,000. And even good in the early 90s when it was 1 in 250. Maybe good enough for the 1 in 150 number that everyone hears now, which was actually the number they came up with a couple years ago. The Department of Defense is claiming a 1 in 88 children among their dependents. The UK just released their newest census- 1 in 60 children. 1 in 34 boys.
Just take a minute to let that soak in. 1 in 60 children. I know in this "small town" I live in there are an estimated TEN kids going into the kindergarten class next year with autism. 10 out of about 60-75 children altogether. In the past professionals have tried to say that the rise in numbers were due to better diagnostics. Well the diagnostics aren't changing now, yet the numbers keep climbing. You do the math.
With numbers like these we need more than awareness, we need big time activism and a lot of action. We have an epidemic on our hands. How long do we have to wait? Until it's 1 in 50? 1 in 25? 1 in 10?
Autism can be reversible. We have heard amazing stories of children making their way out of the world of autism. I have watched my own son, not recover, but make amazing strides. Parents are NOT lying about the gains their children make, they are not lying about the regression they saw after vaccinations, they are not lying about the biomedical approaches they use. Why would they lie?
As the month of April carries on you will be seeing a lot of links here on my blog for you to check out yourselves. Please make sure to visit often!