Autism Spectrum Disorder
CBD for Autism Spectrum Disorder
From 1994 to 2013, the American Psychiatric Association outlined five different autism spectrum diagnoses in their Diagnostic and Statistical Manual. Today, there is one unified classification: autism spectrum disorder (ASD).
A neurodevelopmental disorder that ranges in severity, ASD can cause significant social, communication, and behavioral challenges. According to the Center for Disease Control, ASD affects an estimated 1 in 59 children. Indicators of autism usually appear by age 2 or 3, and early intervention can be instrumental in shaping a positive future for children diagnosed with ASD.
Autism Spectrum Disorder Symptoms
While symptoms vary across the autism spectrum, two common indicators of ASD include:
Social communication challenges
People with autism have difficulty with verbal and non-verbal communication. Often, they don’t understand the appropriate way to use spoken language, tone of voice, figures of speech, facial expressions, eye contact, and gestures.
Restricted, repetitive behavior
These behaviors can include repetitive body movements, repetitive motions with objects, ritualistic behaviors, narrow or intense interests in specific topics, and resistance to change.
Autism Spectrum Disorder Types
The three types of autism spectrum disorders are:
Autistic disorder - The most severe type, this is sometimes referred to as “classic” autism. People with autistic disorder have significant language delays, social and communication challenges, and unusual behaviors and interests.
Asperger syndrome - This is a milder type of autism spectrum disorder. While people with Asperger’s don’t struggle intellectually, they do have difficulty with social interaction.
Pervasive developmental disorder - This type of autism describes individuals who meet some, but not all, of the criteria for the other subtypes.
While scientists haven’t identified the exact cause of autism, suspected environmental and genetic risk factors include:
- Having an immediate family member with autism
- Low birth weight
- Fragile X syndrome and other genetic disorders
- Being born to older parents
- Genetic mutations
- Exposure to heavy metals and environmental toxins
Although doctors haven’t identified a cure for autism, there are treatment options that can aid people with ASD in their everyday life. These include:
Medication. With medication, people with ASD may have fewer problems with aggression, irritability, hyperactivity, repetitive behavior, attention problems, anxiety, and depression.
Therapy. Doctors specializing in behavioral, psychological, educational, and skill-building interventions can teach people on the autism spectrum ways to reduce challenging behaviors, enhance communication, build upon strengths, and live independently.
Alternative treatments like CBD oil. In a recent study, Cannabidiol (CBD) was found to have an 80% success rate in reducing problematic behavior among children with autism spectrum disorder.
Every case of autism is different. Talk to a doctor to explore which treatment option is right for your child.