Monday, April 6, 2009

Bond update

It's been a while since my last post about Bond. Mom has been waiting to hear from Denise about the next step, and she got an email from Denise yesterday giving an update. Denise has had Bond staying with a teenager in her area to get him used to living in a home and to teach him how to go to school. She plans on having him stay there another three weeks or so, and then we will set up our next visit. It's pretty exciting! I will keep you posted as I know more!

Thursday, April 2, 2009

It's World Autism Awareness Day!

I was diagnosed with autism on February 25th, 2003. At that time 1 in 250 children were affected by autism. In the past six years, the number of children with autism has skyrocketed to 1 in 150. Every 20 minutes a family will be told that their loved one has autism.

Know the facts and the warning signs--BE INFORMED! If you know a child who is displaying some of the symptoms of autism--tell their parents. The earlier the intervention, the greater the chance of "recovery". I'm posting a little about autism, some funding facts and what the signs are. This information comes from Autism Speaks. Check out their website:

Also, PLEASE check out this video It's 13 minutes but worth the time (get your kleenex before you sit down).

Here we go (this is kind of a long post--sorry):

Autism is a complex neurobiological disorder that typically lasts throughout a person's lifetime. It is part of a group of disorders known as autism spectrum disorders (ASD). It occurs in all racial, ethnic, and social groups and is four times more likely to strike boys than girls. Autism impairs a person's ability to communicate and relate to others. It is also associated with rigid routines and repetitive behaviors, such as obsessively arranging objects or following very specific routines. Symptoms can range from very mild to quite severe.

Did you know…
*1 in 150 children is diagnosed with autism
*1 in 94 boys is on the autism spectrum
*67 children are diagnosed per day
*A new case is diagnosed almost every 20 minutes
*More children will be diagnosed with autism this year than with AIDS, diabetes & cancer combined
*Autism is the fastest-growing serious developmental disability in the U.S.
*Autism costs the nation over $90 billion per year, a figure expected to double in the next decade
*Autism receives less than 5% of the research funding of many less prevalent childhood diseases
*Boys are four times more likely than girls to have autism
*There is no medical detection or cure for autism

Incidence vs. Private Funding
*Leukemia: Affects 1 in 25,000 / Funding: $310 million
*Muscular Dystrophy: Affects 1 in 20,000 / Funding: $175 million
*Pediatric AIDS: Affects 1 in 8,000 / Funding: $394 million
*Juvenile Diabetes: Affects 1 in 500 / Funding: $130 million
*Autism: Affects 1 in 150 / Funding: $42 million

National Institutes of Health Funds Allocation
*Total 2007 NIH budget: $29 billion
*Of this, $80 million goes directly to autism research. This represents 0.28% of total NIH funding.

Know the signs
*Does not babble or coo by 12 months
*Does not gesture (point, wave, grasp) by 12 months
*Does not say single words by 16 months
*Does not say two-word phrases on his or her own by 24 months
*Has any loss of any language or social skill at any age

Having any of these five "red flags" does not mean your child has autism. But because the characteristics of the disorder vary so much, a child showing these behaviors should have further evaluations by a multidisciplinary team. This team may include a neurologist, psychologist, developmental pediatrician, speech/language therapist, learning consultant, or other professionals knowledgeable about autism.

Now you know! If you have any questions my mom would love to talk to you. Send her an e-mail at the e-mail address on the right.

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