Your child has autism. Your baby has autism. Those words may be swirling in your head over and over again. It may not seem real. It may feel like a dream. You look at your sweet child and wonder how you missed it . . . all of those little signs that you somehow didn’t know to notice.
And yet, here it is. Your child has autism. And even though you may have feared that word so very much, it is now staring at you straight in the face. You see it in her big, brown eyes. You see it in his tip-toe strides. It’s now a part of your child. It’s now a part of your family. And you’re not sure what this will all mean.
You may have been told that there is no cure, and the best you can do is provide behavioral modification therapies that may help your child seem more “neurotypical.” You may have been told about occupational therapy, or you may have been led to online sites in order to find support from others who have walked the road before you.
Here’s what you may not have been told.
1. Autism is medical.
When your doctor told you that your child had autism, there was no blood work to confirm it. There were no labs to review or physical examinations to do. Autism was the name given to the behaviors you observed, the challenges you may have faced.
The doctor may have mentioned co-morbid symptoms, including seizures and eczema and gastrointestinal disorders, but overall, the diagnosis was based on what you’ve been able to see on the outside. The medical standard of care for autism states that there is no cure and offers ABA (Applied Behavioral Analysis) and other therapies as a means of support for your child’s disorder.
What you may not have been told is what is happening on the inside.
You see, I’ve come to discover that autism is largely medical. Children with autism often suffer from a number of medical conditions, including gut dysbiosis, mitochondrial dysfunction, yeast overgrowth, heavy metal toxicity, eye convergence insufficiency, and more.
Biomedical practitioners known as DAN (Defeat Autism Now!) and MAPS doctors can provide a number of tests and labs that can help you determine what is happening internally. These labs can help provide a means to discover the causes behind your child’s autistic behaviors. When those are determined, healing can then take place.
2. Autism is treatable.
When you know what is happening medically, you can then find solutions for recovery. These solutions can help with healing internally, followed by an improvement in overall behaviors. Knowing what is causing your child harm can also empower you to make better choices about future medical interventions.
A huge percentage of children with autism improve with special diets, such as a gluten-free, casein-free diet. Others benefit from a Ketogenic or Simple Carbohydrate Diet or GAPS diet. These diets, along with supplemental enzymes, can reduce the inflammatory response in the gut and allow for better absorption of nutrition.
Some children benefit from supplementation, including the addition of specific B vitamins that can help with methylation. Others benefit from cod liver oil, neurotransmitter support, magnesium, and even anti-androgen herbs. Many have found probiotics to be helpful and some have found that they do better without them. Finding the right practitioner can help you navigate through the options in order to find what best helps your child’s unique situation. (Click here to see some of our favorite supplements for healing.)
Many children with autism suffer from heavy metal or overall toxicity. Removing the toxins safely from the body can help bring overall healing to the organs and systems. Options include gentle detoxes, including supplementation with Vitamin C, sessions in an infrared sauna, ionic footbaths, and Epsom salt baths. Some parents have also found success with the Andrew Cutler Chelation protocol.
Other treatment options include the Nemechek Protocol, hyperbaric oxygen chamber, chiropractic care, Neurolink, NeuroModulation Technique, CBD oil, camel’s milk, and more. Homeopathy is also an effective option, including practical homeopathy, classical homeopathy, and CEASE Therapy or sequential homeopathy. Sometimes prescription medications are also used to treat conditions, such as yeast overgrowth or parasites. As with anything, finding the right practitioner will be key to finding a solution that works.
The good news is that when a child is treated for the underlying causes, then healing can truly occur. Along with healing comes recovery.
During autism recovery, specific therapy treatments can prove helpful in helping your child attain certain abilities. Applied Behavioral Analysis, Vision Therapy, Speech Therapy, Physical Therapy, and Occupational Therapy can all be helpful in your child’s journey.
For each child, healing will look different. Some children will regain their speech. Others will be able to sleep more soundly and interact more readily. Some will completely lose their diagnosis.
Whatever it is that you do, your child will be that much better for it all. Here is a list of reputable sources that can help provide helpful solutions for your child:
3. Autism can be caused by environmental factors.
There’s another thing that I think you should know. Autism can be caused by environmental factors such as lead poisoning, heavy metal toxicity, and vaccines. I know it may not be what you’ve been told, but finding the cause of your specific child’s diagnosis may help you better avoid further harm to his body.
Vaccines contain a number of neurotoxins, including aluminum, mercury, and more that are capable of crossing the blood-brain barrier and causing an inflammatory response in the brain. Scientists have been able to “give” mice autism by simply activating these responses with immune activation and injection of aluminum, similar to what is found in a vaccine.
I urge you to read this article on international studies that strongly implicate vaccines in their connection to autism. I know this may be difficult to take in, but ignorance can be even more costly. Some children are more susceptible to injury due to genetic predispositions, such as an MTHFR mutation. Genetic testing and review with a qualified practitioner can help you avoid further harm if this is an area of concern. I pray you find the answers you need to make an informed choice in the future.
4. Autism can hurt.
This isn’t something you see too much on the mainstream media outlets. Some organizations have gone from calling autism a “disorder” to merely a “condition.” The perspective is one of celebration for the differences and gifts found in children with autism.
Although every child truly does have gifts, autism or not, the reality is that autism can hurt. Even in a “high functioning” situation, autism is not easy. Living with autism presents many challenges that you may not initially be equipped to handle.
Autism, for your family, may include extreme anger, fits of rage, aggression, meltdowns, temper tantrums, and many other behaviors that no one likes to talk about. When your child experiences these behaviors, it is one of the hardest things to watch. It may also be one of the hardest things to understand.
Not knowing how to respond or how to help others understand your child can easily cause division in the family and within a marriage. With the mainstream push to “light it up,” it’s easy to feel alone when the days are hard, and the future seems dark. I encourage you to find a support group, therapist, or a group of friends that can share the journey with you. Don’t be afraid to get help.
Standing strong in faith can also offer peace in the midst of the storms. As a mother or father of a child with special needs, you have special needs too. The better you are able to take care of yourself, the more you can offer your child.
5. Autism needs love.
Your child has autism, but there is hope. There is hope for her. There is hope for you. But the most important thing you can do is love. Love her and support her. Celebrate her.
Your life may look nothing like you had hoped, but you must learn to be grateful. You mustn’t allow yourself to live in the “what if’s,” and you mustn’t blame yourself for any part of it. Find the “collateral beauty” in the journey. Try and see life through her eyes and stand by her every step of the way.
Every child’s struggles are different, but even if they cannot verbally express themselves, many are still aware of everything around them. Speak positively. Always.
Never make it about the “fixing.” Healing and recovery is not about “fixing” your child. It’s about helping him to feel better and to be the best he can possibly be. Whatever that may look like, encourage him. Pray for him. Be his greatest fan. . .
And when he comes tip-toeing in your direction, and those big, brown eyes are staring you in the face, smile big and remember this: Autism needs love. Lots of it. May you give it freely to your baby and all those around you.
Yes, autism is medical, but it can also be treatable. There are countless stories of recovery and healing all over the web. Seek them out and be encouraged. Hold on to hope.
Regardless of what you’ve been told, there is hope for your child. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. Your child needs you to stand strong. . .
Every child with autism needs us to stand strong.
Let us rise up. . . #forthechildren. . . together.