Coronavirus and What do Older Adults and People with Disabilities Need to Know?

Older people are more likely to have serious COVID-19 illness. This may be because immune systems change with age, making it harder to fight off diseases and infection. Older adults also are more likely to have underlying health conditions that make it harder to cope with and recover from illness. In addition, people of all ages, with or without disabilities, are at higher risk for getting very sick from COVID-19 if they have serious chronic medical conditions […]

Quit Smoking for Better Health

If you smoke, quitting is one of the best things you can do for your health. Tiffany learned early in life that cigarettes cause premature death and disease: her mother died of smoking-related lung cancer when she was just 16. Tiffany, a participant in CDC’s Tips From Former Smokers® (Tips) ad campaign, said that she felt alone and afraid during her mother’s illness. “And I felt it could have been prevented,” she said. Even so, […]

Why it may be more difficult for individuals with ASD to Maintain a Healthy Weight

Rigidity, sensory sensitivities, coordination difficulties, and sleep dysfunction often go together with an autism diagnosis. They present their own challenges, but these symptoms can also put a child at risk for being overweight or obese and for diabetes or heart disease later as an adult. Although eating a balanced diet, getting enough exercise, and good sleep habits can be hard for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), there are strategies parents can use to help […]

My Belly Has Two Buttons

by Meikele “Lee” Needles I dreamed of being a mom. I wanted to be a good mom like my mother. Happy, gentle, and supportive of me just as I was…but would do whatever needed to protect my baby. What a premonition of my future! And I had no idea what was in store. I met, married and we started our Family in Helena, Montana. Our first Daughter was normally active and even advanced in a lot […]

The Challenge of Physical Fitness for People with Autism

Marina Sarris Interactive Autism Network ian@kennedykrieger.org You’ve probably seen the headlines: studies say that children and adults with autism are at risk for an inactive lifestyle and obesity. While the reasons are subject to debate, it’s clear that people with ASD often face unique challenges to physical fitness. The core features of autism – social, communication and behavior problems – can make joining a game of kickball at recess or playing tag with neighborhood kids […]