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What is Autism?


We believe that autism and all of its variations, including PDD, ADD, ADHD, Asperger's Syndrome and Landeau-Clefner Syndrome, lie on a continuum of neurological impairments caused by mild to moderately severe brain injury. Therefore, our centers provide treatment aimed at modifying the brain's neurological pathways.

These brain injuries cause perceptual, not psychotic, problems: one or more sensory channels for sight, sound, taste, touch, or smell distort input before it reaches the brain. These abnormal perceptual channels can be either:

  • hyperactive: the channel is too open; too much stimulation gets in for the brain to handle comfortably.
  • hypoactive: the channel is not open enough; too little stimulation gets in and the brain is deprived.
  • white-noise affected: the channel creates its own static because of its faulty operation; messages from the outside world are garbled or, in extreme cases, overcome by the noise in the system.

The strange repetitive behaviors of the autistic child, commonly known as autisms, are symptoms of brain injury. It would be more accurate to call these behaviors sensoryisms, since they are the child's attempts to normalize the affected sensory channels and in effect, treat him - or herself.

It is this attempt to normalize one's own sensory channels that steals the child's attention away from reality and prevents him or her from thriving in the real world. The repetitive behaviors are the child's way of communicating which sensory channels are affected. All we have to do is observe closely and we can learn whether the abnormal channel is hyperactive, hypoactive, or affected by white noise.

Once abnormalities are identified, we can help the child normalize his or her perceptions through the use of experiential exercises and stimulation of abnormal channels. As sensory perceptions normalize, the strange repetitive behaviors cease and the child can focus attention on dealing with the real world and learning to interact with things and people around him.

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What Is Autism?
Symptons of Austism
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