The Importance Of Early Sibling Support Group Involvement

BY CHRISTY HAWKINS Growing up with a brother that was prone to out of the blue temper tantrums limited family vacations. The evening hours after he returned from school after another day of angst with his peers and all that stimuli would always pose some challenges. Not to mention my brother’s difficulty with the classroom expectations and the frustration of his teachers. He was so smart, so capable. So why could he not produce the […]

Life with My Brother Sammy

BY PAIGE TALHELM My brother has every right to be in church, the store, or a restaurant • So I do feel bad, not for myself, but for Sammy • He is just being himself • Is he hurt by people’s reactions? • What is he thinking? • These questions fill my mind and drive me crazy every day • My brother, Sammy, is six years younger than me. He is 17 years old with […]

Concerns About Autism

As the country’s leading public health agency, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is committed to protecting the health of all Americans–including infants, children, and adolescents. CDC shares with parents and many others great concern about the number of children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD). We are committed to understanding what causes autism, how it can be prevented, and how it can be recognized and treated as early as possible. Estimates released in […]

Vaccines DO NOT Cause Autism

– The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a developmental disability that is caused by differences in how the brain functions. People with ASD may communicate, interact, behave, and learn in different ways. Recent estimates from CDC’s Autism and Developmental Disabilities Monitoring Network found that about 1 in 68 children have been identified with ASD in communities across the United States. CDC is committed to providing essential data on […]

Fullerton Cares Autism Foundation

BY JESS BLOCK NERREN, MA Creating authentic autism awareness, acceptance and action in every corner of a Southern California Community. Boyd Houser isn’t just any adorable six-year-old kid who loves to write with chalk, build snowmen and give hugs to his family. He is a little guy who will grow up in a world where inclusion isn’t just a word but also a way of life. Boyd inspired his dad, Larry Houser, to found the […]

Seven Tips To Help Parents This Autism Awareness Month

By Deanna Picon, founder of Your Autism Coach, LLC ( and author of The Autism Parents’ Guide to Reclaiming Your Life has declared Saturday, April 11 as a day for family members and friends to support the parents of children with autism. Apply these simple tips to make a difference in the lives of special needs parents: • Give a well-deserved break.Managing all aspects of a child’s daily living, including personal needs, school activities, therapy […]

An Opportunity for a Living Wage for Individuals on the Autism Spectrum? Electronics Recycling & Refurbishing

BY ERNST VANBERGEIJK, PH.D., M.S.W. Without specific job training, individuals on the autism spectrum face rather bleak employment prospects. At best, the employment rate is 45 percent for this population. Anecdotal reports find that only about 10 percent of  individuals on the autism spectrum find employment. Often, employment is part-time, minimum wage work which does not afford the individual a living wage. Entitlement programs such as Social Security Disability Insurance limit the amount of money […]

Making Sense of Genetic Testing for Autism Spectrum Disorders

BY LAUREN LICHTEN GENETIC ALLIANCE BY LAUREN LICHTEN, MS CGC Although it is a routine recommendation to offer genetic testing to all children who have a diagnosis of an autism spectrum disorder (ASD), the thought of genetic testing can be unsettling to many parents. It also can be very difficult for families and doctors to obtain clear and accurate information about genetic testing for ASDs in an age where our knowledge of genetics is growing […]


BY KIMBERLEE RUTAN McCAFFERTY  This past summer my family and I spent a day at Great Adventure. It’s the only place Justin, my severely autistic son, willingly stays for more than an hour (I have often joked with my husband that wherever we live has to be within a 30 minute radius of a Six Flags parks.) It’s usually a very fun excursion for us, mostly free of angst, and something I truly enjoy doing as a family. On our last […]

Prevention, Evaluation, And Management Of Low Bone Density – PART 1

BY PHILIP MAY MD  Prevention, Evaluation, and Management of Low Bone Mineral Density (BMD) Encountered in Adults with Developmental and Intellectual DisabilitiesClinical experience and published reports have shown that low BMD is especially common in adults with developmental disabilities, such as intellectual disability, epilepsy, autism, and cerebral palsy. Abstract For various reasons, high frequency of low bone mineral density (BMD) and increased risk for fracture are often encountered in adults with “medically complex developmental disabilities” […]