April is Autism Awareness Month....Again

It is with mixed emotions that I once again write about autism and autism awareness. I tire of hearing myself tell all I know about autism and fear you may too. I can’t say as though I’d blame you. But please, let me tell you why I do what I do. I know most, if not all, of you are aware that we have a child with autism. He is now eight. We have been on this journey for the past six plus years.

It is not for me that I march on and continue to speak out. My only child was taken from us by autism. I’m glaringly aware. Autism chose us, chose my son. I’m aware, but are you? With the current rates of autism one in 110 and one 70 boys, with no known cause or cure, with no immediate end in sight, this I do for you. Autism already rocked my world. It is all of you, the not yet touched, that I am trying to spare. Chances are, at the rate we’re going, one day in the not too distant future, autism will also claim your family. I sincerely hope and pray not, but the drastic incline in the statistics speaks for itself. Sad but true.

Autism: The facts

1980’s: 1-2 per 10,000 children

1994: 1 in 1,000 ( (10 per 10k)

Late 1990’s: 1 in 500 (20 per 10k)

2000: 1 in 250 (40 per 10 k)

2004: 1 in 166 (60 per 10k)

2007: 1 in 150 (67 per 10k)

2009: 1 in 110 (90 per 10k)

Possibly 10-15% of autism cases can be attributed to genetic factors, leaving the largest population of those with the disorder due to other factors, most likely environmental. There is currently 1 to 1.5 million people somewhere on the spectrum here in the U.S. The majority of those individuals are children. A new case of autism is detected and diagnosed every 15 to 20 minutes. Approximately 40% of individuals with an Autism Spectrum Disorder are never able to speak. 85% of individuals with an ASD are not able to remain gainfully employed. The economic impact of autism is 90 billion dollars per year and growing. In 10 years, the annual cost will be $200-400 billion. Autism is by far the fastest growing childhood disorder/disease and yet remains grossly underfunded.

The facts concerning our son with autism:
According to his records, Sam has all the classic signs of Regressive Autism. Meaning, he was developing normally until one day, something significantly changed. Sam has undergone all of the genetic testing to date. He has none of the known genetic biomarkers. There are thought to be over 200. Sam does have repeatedly documented toxic levels of mercury in his tissue and blood. He also has an overburden of testosterone levels. Testosterone inhibits the natural excretion of heavy metals, namely mercury. As we address both of these issues together, our son progresses and improves. Slow but sure.

These questions remain: Why our son? Where was he exposed to toxic levels of mercury other than his childhood vaccines? If no one can answer these two questions as of yet, whose child is destined to be next?

Autism doesn’t play favorites. Now you’re aware.

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