Sensory networks overconnected early in autism

Published by: Spectrum News
Written by:  ANGIE VOYLES ASKHAM

Toddlers with autism have unusually strong connections between sensory areas of the brain, according to a new study1. And the stronger the connections, the more pronounced a child’s autism traits tend to be.

Overconnectivity in sensory areas may get in the way of an autistic child’s brain development, says lead investigator Inna Fishman, associate research professor at San Diego State University in California. “Their brain is busy with things it shouldn’t be busy with.”

The findings add to a complicated field of research on brain connectivity and autism, which has shown weakened connectivity between some brain areas, strengthened connectivity between others, or no difference in connectivity at all. Click here to read the rest of the story.

Teaching Strategies for Individuals with Multiple Disabilities

 

Evidence based practices for students with severe disabilities 

Instructional strategies for students with multiple disabilities

Multiple disabilities in your classroom: 10 tips for teachers

Severe and education of individuals with multiple disabilities

Strategies for inclusion of children with multiple disabilities including deaf-blindness

Students who are blind or visually impaired with multiple disabilities

Students with multiple disabilities

Supporting young children with multiple disabilities: What do we know and what do we still need to learn?

Teaching students with multiple disabilities

Teaching students with severe or multiple disabilities

Advocacy

Articles and Websites- Advocating for Your Child
Getting Started- Wrights Law
Advice for Families and caregivers- Care.com
Ten Reasons Why You Should Have An Advocate for Your Child With Special Needs- Friendship Circle
6 Ways To Advocate For Your Special Needs Child-Sheknows.com
Navigating the Storm- by Amie Borst
Toolkit: Advocating For Your Child- I-Parents
Basics About Your Child’s Rights- Understood
Tips On Advocating For Your Child with Special Needs- Take Part

 

Self-Advocacy

 Self-Advocacy- Wikipedia
Self-Advocacy- Wrights Law
Self- Advocacy Association of New York State
Self-Advocacy Online
Autistic Self-Advocacy Network

 

Updated 9/2/2020

What is Sepsis?

While Sepsis is a severe life-threatening medical condition, it can also affect people with disabilities. According to the Centers for Diseases and Control (CDC), Sepsis is the body’s extreme response to an infection. It is a life-threatening medical emergency. Sepsis happens when an infection you already have —in your skin, lungs, urinary tract, or somewhere else—triggers a chain reaction throughout your body. Without timely treatment, sepsis can rapidly lead to tissue damage, organ failure, and death. Sepsis kills more than 250,000 people a year with 1.5 million diagnosed each year.

Signs and Symptoms
  • An initial infection
  • Fever
  • High heart rate
  • heavy breathing

Severe sepsis occurs during organ failure. signs include:

  • decrease urination
  • breathing problems
  • body chills
  • extreme weakness

Sepsis is caused by:

  • Pneumonia
  • Kidney infection
  • Bloodstream infections.

if you work with an individual displaying any of these signs and symptoms, seek medical attention.

Resources

Recovering from Sepsis– NHS

Sepsis Overview– Science Direct

What is Sepsis?– Sepsis Alliance

Going Back-to-School Presents Unique Challenges for Children with Autism

Published by: 9 & 10 News
Written by: Chloe KipleJosh Monroe

Every parent is concerned and anxious to hear what’s going to happen when the new school year rolls around.

The 2020-2021 year will be unlike any other because of coronavirus concerns. While every student will be impacted by changes, it will be an especially unique situation for children with autism.

Parents like Ashley Bursian are curious to see how any changes after her son.

7-year-old Ari has autism and is nonverbal. Bursian says he thrives off his daily routine: going to school, then to behavioral therapy. The stay-at-home orders disrupted his schedule.

“After the first month, I noticed his behavior changing a little bit, he seemed a little more nervous, a little unsure, why we were stuck at home all the time,” she said. “That led to a lot more tantrums, and meltdowns, and interfering behavior.” Click here to read the rest of the story

Intellectual Disability Resource Page

Definition:

Developmental disability is a diverse group of chronic conditions that are due to mental or physical impairments before the age of 22. A developmental disability can occur before, during or after birth. Common well-known developmental disabilities include autism, Down syndrome, cerebral palsy and Fragile X syndrome. Here are some facts and statistics on developmental disabilities.

Awareness Day: None

Awareness Month: March

Ribbon: Blue/Silver

Prevalence:

  • Developmental Disability is a severe, long-term disability that affect cognitive ability, physical functioning or both.
  • 1 in 6 or about 15% of children aged 3 through 17 have one or more developmental disabilities.
  • Between 2014 and 2016 the prevalence of developmental disability among kids ages 3 to 17 increased from 5.76 percent to 6.99 percent.
  • Prevalence of autism increased 289.5%
  • Prevalence of ADHD increased 33.0 %
  • Males have a higher prevalence of ADHD, autism, learning disabilities, stuttering and other developmental disabilities.
  • Children from families with incomes below the federal poverty level had a higher prevalence of developmental disabilities.
  • 10% of Americans have a family member with an intellectual disability.
  • Intellectual disabilities are 25 times more common than blindness.
  • Every year 125,000 children are born with an intellectual disability
  • Approximately 85% of the intellectual disability is in the mild category.
  • About 10% of the intellectual disability is considered moderate
  • About 3-4% of the intellectual disability population is severe.
  • Only 1-2% is classified as profound.

Article

15 Facts About Cri Du Chat Syndrome

20 Facts You Should Know About Down Syndrome

Dementia and Intellectual Disabilities

Early Signs of Rett Syndrome

Intellectual Disability and Epilepsy

What is Lowe Syndrome?

What is Prader Willi Syndrome?

What is Turner Syndrome?

What is Childhood Disintegrative Disorder?

Did you know that Childhood Disintegrative Disorder is  considered part of Autism Spectrum?

Childhood Disintegrative Disorder (CDD) is a condition where a child develops normally and achieves appropriate milestones up to the age of 4 and then begins to regress in both developmental and behavioral milestones and lose the skills they already learned. with a loss o skills plateauing around the age of 10.

Childhood Disintegrative Disorder is rare. It affects 1.7 in 100,000 and affects males at a higher rate than females. It is also known as Heller’s Syndrome and Disintegrative psychosis. The causes are unknown but may be linked to issues with the brain and nervous systems with some researchers suggesting it is some form of childhood dementia.

First discovered by Dr. Theodor Heller in 1908, Dr. Heller began publishing articles on his observation of children’s medical history in which he reported that in certain cases, children who were developing normally began to reverse at a certain age.

Signs and Symptoms

Children begin to show significant losses of earlier acquired skills in at least two of the following areas:

  • Lack of play
  • Loss of language or communication skills
  • Loss of social skills
  • Loss of bladder control
  • Lack of motor skills

The following characteristics also appear:

  • Social interaction
  • Communication
  • Repetitive interests or behaviors

Due to the small number of reported cases, it is included in the broad grouping of autism spectrum disorder in DSM-V under pervasive developmental disorder (PDD).  Although grouped with the autism spectrum disorder diagnosis, there are distinct differences. For example, children with CDD were more likely to be diagnosed with severe intellectual disability, epilepsy and long term impairment of behavior and cognitive functioning.

Resources

NCBI

Summit Medical Group

What is a Visual Impairment?

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), approximately 6.8% of children younger than 18 years in the United States have a diagnosed eye and vision condition and 3% of children younger than 18 years are blind and visually impaired. Visual disability is one of the most prevalent disabilities disabilities among children.

According to IDEA’s definition, visual impairment is defined s including blindness means an impairment in vision that even with correction, adversely affects a child’s educational performance. The World Health Organization (WHO), classifies visual impairment as occurring when an eye condition affects the visual system and one or more of its vision includes both partial sight and blindness

Classifications

The World Health Organization uses the following classification based on visual acuity in the better eye:

  • 20/30 to 20/60- mild vision impairment
  • 20/70 to 20/160- moderate visual impairment
  • 20/200 to 20/400- severe visual impairment
  • 20/500 to 20/1,000- profound visual impairment
  • More than 20/1,000- considered near-total visual impairment
  • No light perception- considered total visual impairment or total blindness
Types of Visual Impairment
  • Strabismus– a condition when the eyes do not align with each other (crossed eyes)
  • Congenital cataracts– a clouding of the eyes natural lens present a birth.
  • Retinopathy of prematurity– a blinding disorder that affects prenatal infants that are born before 31 week of gestation.
  • Coloboma- a condition where normal tissue in or around the eye is missing at birth.
  • Cortical visual impairment– a visual impairment that occurs due to brain injury.
Signs of Visual Impairments
  • Appears “clumsy” in new situation
  • Shows signs of fatigue or inattentiveness
  • Does not pay attention when information is on the chalkboard or reading material
  • Is unable to see distant things clearly
  • Squints
  • Eyes may appear crossed
  • Complains of dizziness.
Causes

The causes of childhood blindness or visual impairment is often caused by Vitamin A deficiency which is the leading cause of preventable blindness in children. Other causes include genetics, diabetes, injury and infections such as congenital rubella syndrome and chickenpox before birth.

Cortical Visual Impairment (CVI)

Cortical Visual Impairment in children is attributed to brain dysfunction rather than issues with the eyes. Causes included hypoxia, traumatic brain injury, neonatal hypoglycemia, infections and cardiac arrest.

 

 

References

World Health Organization (WHO)

www.cdc.org

As schools reopen, pandemic forces hard choices for special needs students

Published by: Tampa Bay Times
Written by: Rebecca Torrence

Tommy Steele’s first two virtual school lessons in the spring went great. His mom felt optimistic. Then Friday rolled around.

Tommy, a rising third-grader with Down syndrome, opened his brother’s Macbook on the kitchen table at 9 a.m. Peggy Steele sat beside her son to coax him through the day’s lesson: 45 minutes of reading and math, taught over Zoom.

Within minutes, Tommy slumped over the table. Forearms folded in front of him, he buried his head and fixed his gaze on the floor.

When he finally lifted his head, he refused to speak, but the message was clear.

No more learning for today.

Children with special needs face many roadblocks in their education, like trouble focusing on a task or communicating their thoughts. Special education programs are created to address those hurdles. But their solutions, which often rely on face-to-face interaction with teachers, may be lost during the coronavirus crisis as more families and school systems turn to virtual learning. Click here to read the rest of the story