About pLDNetworks

Asperger’s Syndrome

Diagnosis Anniversary Revisited

submitted by lawilcox

Last year I wrote about what I refer to as our diagnosis anniversary and all of the emotions it brings with it each year for me…right around Christmastime. This year, marks 5 years since our lives changed drastically - when we entered the community caring for and serving children and individuals with ASD; our 5-year diagnosis anniversary.
Ethan doesn’t really know I have these bitter-sweet moments every December and I plan to keep it that way, at least for now…He LOVES the joys Christmas brings and I adore watching the joy unfold around him. Spending time with our extended family makes him happy from the tips of his toes to the ends of the hairs on his head. He now shops for our family members – spending his own money – and helps wrap each gift. Ethan helped prepare gifts for the teachers and administrators he adores at his school. He understands why our family celebrates with gift giving and loves to hear the story of the Three Wise Men bringing gifts from afar to the Baby Jesus. Someday maybe I’ll share with him about my conflicting emotions at this time of year, but only when he’s an adult, and only if he is able to comprehend and filter such information to benefit his life and outlook; otherwise – I’ll keep it to myself.


Guest Blog: Helping the Medicine Go Down

submitted by lawilcox

This guest blog post, about how compounding pharmacies can be a tremendous resource for families raising children with ASD, comes from Ashley Dick, who is a practicing compounding pharmacist and co-owner of PharmaCare Compounding Solutions in Tennessee.
Helping the Medicine Go Down: Addressing the special needs of ASD patients
By Ashley Dick, PharmD
For the parents of a child with an autism spectrum disorder (ASD), the many difficulties that come with caring for their child can cause significant stress and frustration, to the point of being overwhelming. Often amplifying these feelings is the fact that the very characteristics of the condition make it exceedingly difficult to treat the symptoms or simply help the child to feel better. Because of the extreme sensory and dietary issues experienced by many ASD patients, traditional forms of medication or nutritional supplements are either difficult or impossible to administer, but there is a solution through pharmacy compounding.


Guest Blog – Professional Acting with Asperger’s Syndrome: Part 3

submitted by lawilcox

If you missed Part 1 and Part 2 of this guest blog series by Jennifer Dodson about her son, "M," (a handsome and smart little boy with Asperger’s Syndrome) who pursuing a professional acting career, I encourage you to click over and take a look.
Professional Acting with Asperger’s Syndrome: Part 3
By Jennifer Dodson
I often share M’s diagnosis and personality quirks with members of the Production Crew and fellow cast members. I do this AFTER he has booked a job and only when it seems appropriate or necessary to do so. He is different and there are better ways to speak to M than others. For example, when a Director understands that M is very literal and there is mostly black and white and not a lot of grey in his interpretations, they can direct him better. It seems that most adults like to give weighted options to children. For example, if you say, “M if you would like to try it this way…” M will most likely tell you “no.” After all, you did just give him the option to decide if he wanted to do it that way!


Interview – Dr. Julie Buckley – Part 3

submitted by lawilcox

This is the final part of my interview series with Dr. Julie Buckley, author of Healing Our Autistic Children. (Click to read Part 1 and Part 2 of the series.) I want to express my sincere gratitude to Dr. Buckley for writing about and presenting on this topic in a way that has profoundly changed my perspective and approach to life. I hope that you will enjoy and take something powerful away from this interview series.
LAW: Part 2 of your book is dedicated to guiding parents through biomedical treatments with their child’s doctor; please share a little bit about the standard steps to biomedical recovery.
JB: The hard part about autism is that there is little that is “standard” about the approach we use. It is a highly individualized process – each child is unique in their genes, in their environmental exposures over the course of their short lives, and in the manifestations of the disease process. It takes a careful eye observing, and careful ears listening to a parent to find a starting point for working toward recovery.


Guest Blog – Funding Autism for Life

submitted by lawilcox

This guest blog post kicks off a new series written by my friend and colleague – Dr. Dan E. Burns. Dan’s series will address many of the challenges faced by families with adult children living with Autism Spectrum Disorders. In this first post, Dan breaks down and describes many of the ways families can go about “Funding Autism for Life” with pertinent suggestions and ideas for parents with younger children as well. I know you’re going to learn a lot and enjoy Dan’s guest series. Please help me welcome Dan!
Funding Autism for Life: A Map to Treasure Island
By Dan E. Burns
“It’s autism. There is no medical treatment. Let the schools take care of him and save your money for his institutionalization when he turns 21.” Those were the final, chilling words Ben’s pediatric neurologist spoke to me on Pearl Harbor Day, December 7, 1990. Ben was three years, four months old.
I declared war. With an ABA manual in one hand and biomedical primer in the other, I fought for Ben’s future. But as the months and years went by and the hope for a full recovery dimmed, I had to admit that his pediatrician was right. Where would Ben live, work, and find friends after the school bus stopped coming?


Interview – Dr. Julie Buckley – Part 2

submitted by lawilcox

As I mentioned in Part 1 of my interview with Dr. Julie Buckley last week, I met Dr. Julie Buckley at the National Autism Association annual conference in the fall of 2010, but I was already familiar with her work. Her book, Healing Our Autistic Children, is one of my favorite books for parents raising children with ASD. In the book, Dr. Buckley shares very personal experiences (as a mother and Pediatrician) about how and why autism is a treatable medical disease. Also, the two times I’ve heard Dr. Buckley speak at NAA, I was greatly impacted. See my post about Caring for the Caregiver HERE inspired by Dr. Buckley’s presentations at NAA the past two years.
LAW: Please share a little about “The Big 3”: Inflammation, Oxidative Stress and Toxicity.
JB: When I teach families about the big three – toxicity, oxidative stress, and the chronic inflammatory response, I use the Venn Diagram approach that Sid Baker, MD and Liz Mumper, MD taught me. We know that autism, classically defined, is at the center of the intersecting circles, where behavior abnormalities, communication problems and social skills challenges intersect. But we also know that physically, autism lies at the intersection of three big problems – gut disease, immune dysregulation and methylation chemistry disturbances. It is these physical problems that give rise to the behavior/communication/social skills problems Leo Kanner observed. And even more fundamentally, it is the “Big 3” – toxicity, oxidative stress, and the chronic inflammatory response – that allow the physical things (the gut disease, the immune dysregulation, the methylation chemistry disruption) to get started, and then those physical things give rise to the behavior/social skills communication problems…it starts to feel a little bit like that old childhood song “I know an old lady who swallowed a fly…”


Guest Blog: Professional Acting with Asperger’s Syndrome: Part 2

submitted by lawilcox

A couple weeks ago we introduced you to Jennifer and "M" in Part 1 of Jen’s series about Professional Acting with Asperger’s Syndrome. I’m happy to bring you Part 2 today…Part 3 coming in a couple weeks. Enjoy!
Professional Acting with Asperger’s Syndrome: Part 2
By Jennifer Dodson
In my last post, you were introduced to my son M who is an actor with Asperger Syndrome. After getting started in the theater as Tiny Tim in A Christmas Carol, M continued to love acting so much we got him a Talent Agent and started going on auditions and booking jobs.
The first time M was on a film set I knew this was going to be a great journey for our son. It was summertime and we drove to Austin for M to be in a short film as a child at a birthday party. Five hours of filming the same pool scene and not once did my son complain or get distracted. Even with the migraine headache he ended up with and the rush trips to the bathroom when the Director would “cut” for a minute so he could throw up did not cause M to lose focus or to want to quit.


GFCF Cornbread Dressing for Thanksgiving

submitted by lawilcox

In case you missed it on our Facebook page yesterday, there was some talk about preparing for Thanksgiving. I posed a question to our FB friends about how everyone will be celebrating…traveling, staying home, hosting, etc. In my house, Ethan absolutely loves to help me bake anything sweet and has become a real whiz at cracking eggs lately! In the thread, I was asked for my GFCF Cornbread Dressing recipe, so I wanted to share it here, too.
This recipe is from my maternal Grandmother (who was a tremendous cook and baker), it later became my mom’s (who is also amzaing in the kitchen and converted many of her mom’s recipes to be GF many years ago). When I started cutting casein from Ethan’s diet, Grammy’s recipe transformed once again! The result is below. If you give it a try, let me know what you think. (I apologize in advance for the lack of precise measurements – especially in the dressing recipe…I’m a “taste it as you go” kind of cook most of the time!)


Interview – Dr. Julie Buckley – Part 1

submitted by lawilcox

Last fall I met Dr. Julie Buckley at the National Autism Association annual conference, but I was already familiar with her work. Her book, Healing Our Autistic Children: A Medical Plan for Restoring Your Child's Health, is one of my favorite books for parents who work tirelessly to navigate the challenging waters of raising children with ASD. In her book, Dr. Buckley shares very personal experiences (as a mother and Pediatrician) about how and why autism is a treatable medical disease. It is well-written, easy to read and filled with tremendous information which helped equip me to be a better mother and caregiver to Ethan. Also, the two times I’ve heard Dr. Buckley speak at NAA, I was greatly impacted. See my most recent post about Caring for the Caregiver HERE. I hope you’ll enjoy Part 1 of our interview series. Let us know what you think!
LAW: Dr. Buckley, Please tell us a little about yourself and your personal and professional “interests” in Autism Spectrum Disorders.
JB: My professional interest in Autism developed as a direct result of my personal interest in Autism. My personal interest in Autism developed involuntarily and very abruptly when my daughter regressed profoundly at the age of four.


Guest Blog: Stem Cell Treatment for Autism

submitted by lawilcox

This guest blog is written by a woman who has a brain extremely well-suited to talk science! Everytime we talk about treatments for ASD - she blows me away. She reads widely, attends conferences, asks hard-hitting but well-reasoned questions and as a retains an astounding amount of pertinent information regarding current research and treatments for children and young adults with autism. Please help me welcome Nicole Wallace; her first guest post for us shares interesting details about stem cell treatments for children with ASD.
STEM CELL TREATMENT FOR AUTISM
By Nicole Wallace
Stem cell treatment for autism has been a hot topic for a few years now. It is often thought of as a last resort when many other more common treatments have already been tried.


Syndicate content