One in Every 36 Children Has Autism
05 Temmuz 2023, Çarşamba - 17:18
Güncelleme: 17 Temmuz 2023, Pazartesi - 13:28
Dinlemek için tıklayınızDİNLE
A+ A-

'Autism Spectrum Disorder' (ASD), seen in one in 150 people in the early 2000s, is now seen one in 36, according to the latest announced 2020 data. Ondokuz Mayıs University (OMU) Faculty of Medicine, Head of the Department of Social Paediatrics, Dr Lecturer  Tuğba Ayçiçek Dinçer shared their experiences on this issue.

Head of the Department of Social Paediatrics, Faculty of Medicine Dr Lecturer Member Tuğba Ayçiçek Dinçer "One in every 36 children has autism, and the cause of this is unknown"

Starting her speech by mentioning that ASD is a developmental problem, Dr Lecturer Tuğba Ayçiçek Dinçer said, "An individual with autism is different from other individuals in terms of behavioural, social, communicative and learning skills. According to the results of studies on twins, ASD has genetic effects and transitions. If the first child in the family is autistic, the risk of the second child being autistic also increases. Unfortunately, what kind of environmental factors are effective other than genetic transmission is not known. These children are treated with special education. ASD is not a condition we can know the cause and prevent initially, but we can identify the risk through screening and make an early diagnosis."

"The incidence of autism is increasing rapidly"

Stating that some findings in individuals with ASD appear in the first 12 months, while in some individuals who survive all developmental steps until the 24th month without any problems they start later, Dinçer continued:

"In autism, the child is deprived of the development they should show and begins to lose the skills they have gained. While the prevalence of autism was 1 in 150 worldwide in the early 2000s, it has increased to 1 in 36, according to the announced 2020 data. Unfortunately, this is a huge increase, meaning that the likelihood of autism is increasing at rocket speed. Since mechanisms other than genetic factors have not been elucidated, we have no choice but early diagnosis of autism through screening. Autism is not a condition we can prevent. As paediatricians, we emphasise the following: If screenings are more frequent and early diagnosis and treatment are initiated, it is less likely that these people will need help in the future. We aim to make the diagnosis before the age of 3. If early diagnosis is made before the age of 3, our touch on the child's life is enormous. As a matter of fact, this is the case in every disease, early diagnosis brings higher success in treating the disease."

In which cases should we suspect autism?

Underlining that the findings related to autism are sometimes very obvious and sometimes subtle, Dinçer said, "A child who develops normally until the 24th month suddenly regresses and loses the habits they have gained. The child may suddenly stop speaking even though they start to form sentences in the 24th month. It is a sign of ASD if the child does not make eye contact in the 6th month, does not turn round when you call them by name in the 9th month, does not adapt through a game in the 12th month, does not point to a place in the 18th month, does not show feelings of pity or sadness in the 24th month, does not play games with other children in the 36th month, and does not play games like 'was' (like a doctor, etc.) in the 48th month. If the child has such symptoms, they should definitely be taken to a paediatrician or pedagogue."

"Children with autism have no facial expressions"

Tuğba Dinçer pointed out that these children do not have facial expressions such as anger, sadness, happiness, or surprise and do not react, and talked about this process as follows:

"They do not like to be hugged by someone and enjoy hanging out alone. They have difficulty in co-ordination, they act on certain routines. They repeat the same sentences and words when they speak. They may have nervous breakdowns. When someone asks a question, they do not answer even if they hear it. Individuals with autism also have repetitive hand movements called flapping. They may be obsessed with a toy and play with it constantly. They may talk about themselves in the third person. They repeat the words you say. Some are able to take care of themselves when they reach adulthood, while others do not speak at all and need the support of others. While autism is now so common, it is of great importance that we act consciously and recognise this disorder with early diagnosis."

"Autism screening is recommended for every child between 18th and 24th month"

Academician Dinçer said that they carry out the scans and refer the suspected patients to paediatrics, "Individuals with autism are also at risk of sleep problems and epilepsy (falling sickness). In this case, treatment is possible with medication if necessary. The American Academy of Paediatrics recommends that every child be screened for autism at 18 and 24 months without any symptoms. If we scan the heel blood for the disease, which occurs in one in 4-5 thousand, 1 in 36 is a truly frightening rate for us. I emphasise again; early diagnosis is of great importance in autism since the cause is unclear. The scans I mentioned are very simple. We ask questions, and if we get answers in the risky group, we move on to more detailed questions."

"Vaccination is the most effective way to protect children from potentially fatal diseases"

Emphasising that a false perception has been created in society that vaccines can cause autism, academician Tuğba Ayçiçek Dinçer concluded her words as follows:

"All studies show the opposite. Families are hesitant, but they should not be caught up in this perception and should definitely get vaccinated. Most of them do not have it done because they want to protect their children, but as physicians, we also want to protect our children. We recommend vaccination to protect children from diseases that can be contagious and cause disability. Not vaccinating children makes them vulnerable to these diseases and does not protect them from autism. Vaccination is currently the most effective way to protect children from potentially fatal diseases."

Secure Login

This login is SSL protected