What is Autism?
Research indicates that about 1% of children have Autism in Australia. Like all children, every child with Autism is unique, however there are core symptoms characterised by differences in behaviour, social interaction, communication and sensory processing. Every person is affected differently, and whilst some people with Autism also have an intellectual impairment or disability, some people have average or above-average intelligence. People with Autism often experience additional challenges and problems like ADHD, Anxiety and Depression are particularly common.
Autism is diagnosed by developmental paediatricians, psychiatrists and psychologists who are qualified in assessing people with Autism. The diagnosis of Autism is an important step forwards because this can offer access to extra support at school and government funding for services. Research shows that the earlier a child starts treatment the better the long-term results. Scientists think that this is because young brains are more “plastic” and can change more easily, a term described as “neuroplasticity.”
Whilst there is currently no single known cause of Autism recent research indicates strong genetic links. It is generally accepted that Autism is caused by changes in the normal structure and function of the brain.
How do we help Autism ?
Treatment for Autism is different for everyone and typically involves a co-ordinated approach involving care from a range of healthcare professions such as Paediatricians, Psychiatrists, Psychologists, Occupational Therapists and Speech Therapists.
At The Perth Brain Centre we help people with Autism and we also help with some of the additional challenges that are common such as ADHD, Anxiety and Depression. Everyone with Autism is different and there is no standard “one-size fits all” approach. We use special scans called QEEG to help pin-point the areas in the brain that may not be working normally, and this information is used to target treatment including Neurofeedback (a type of behavioural therapy) and Biofeedback (a type of sophisticated relaxation training), as well as psychology and targeted lifestyle advice to help the brain.