is improving rapidly
Updated: Jul 15, 2019
The mother of this boy came to us, when her son was progressively getting worse - it was a beginning of regressive autism. The child stopped speaking, stopped reacting and did not understand addressed speech, he became aggressive, and his muscles became weak.
Now, he speaks and communicates again, he not only returned to the condition before regression, but continues to develop positively.
Pregnancy and childbirth. During the pregnancy, in the second trimester, the mother had reactivation of herpes virus infection, and at about the same time, she was diagnosed with pregnancy diabetes.
The child was born by caesarean section. According to the mother, the child cried out with a delay, which usually indicates hypoxia. She also noted jaundice.
The first months of life. In the first months, mom described the child as calm and a bit "detached". The child did not make eye contact, was able to be alone for hours in the crib, did not demand attention to himself, and “remembered” about his mother only when he wanted to eat.
Period from birth to 2.5 years
The child began to sit, walk, learn the alphabet, count, and also knew the names of some animals - everything on time.
However, she paid attention to the details: the child usually did not make eye contact, was not interested in other children, was not interested in toys, and could stand for hours near a bush and tear the leaves, one at a time, or sit and gently tear paper.
At 2.5 years, almost simultaneously two events occurred: the child was no longer breastfed and he suffered otitis (ear infection) of moderate severity. During our discussion of what happened after these events, mom remembered the following:
- he began to forget the words he learned,
- severe hyperactivity,
- stopped responding to his name,
- began to understand only very simple, monosyllabic instructions (take, give, sit down),
- began to react sharply to the sounds of household appliances (vacuum cleaner, mixer, etc.),
and shouted loudly when he heard such sounds,
- stopped playing with his brother,
- became emotionless/apathetic,
- lost natural sense of fear (not afraid of either darkness or heights),
- child began to "stim" (flapping hands when stimulated, etc.),
- there were elements of obsession (lining cars up in a row, requiring that the top and bottom of the clothes were always the same color),
- hypersensitivity of the skin (reacted sharply to touch),
- increased tendency to eat only monotonous food, both in ingredients and in consistency (he agreed to eat only ground-up/puree products),
- issues with sleep (in the evening it took more than an hour to sleep, he woke up at 4 am, and could not sleep again for about 30 minutes),
- the child struggled immensely with constipation.
Condition at the time of initiation of treatment.
About a month before treatment, the child suffered another ear infection, as well as psychological stress. Immediately after this, the condition worsened dramatically:
- the child forgot the few words he did remember,
- forgot all the letters of the alphabet and numbers,
- there were elements of self-aggression (bit his lip until he bled, etc.),
- began to show aggression to family members (hitting someone with his head, etc.),
- increased pain threshold (did not show emotions when falling or other situations that could cause pain),
- there was muscle weakness (legs began to weaken when walking),
- there were frequent tantrums,
- the feeling of fear has completely disappeared (he could run away over long distances, not paying attention to whether someone follows him),
- a pronounced echolalia appeared (it can repeat the same sounds 20-30 times),
- limited and repetitive behavior exacerbated (can open-close doors many times).
March 24 - was the first day of taking the drugs according to the recommended scheme.
April 1 (a week after the start of treatment):
The child himself began to remember the alphabet - he voluntarily stood near the refrigerator and began to show letters-magnets and call them (he vocalized the sound of ten letters, including W, which is typically difficult to pronounce).
Two words appeared in his vocabulary that he repeated often - “very” and “no”
He stopped biting his lip. The wound, which had previously been on the lip due to constant biting, began to heal.
For the first time he wanted to try a new food - mandarin. He took some time for consideration, smelled a slice of mandarin, and in the end ate it.
The mother noted that his eye contact become more conscious/aware: if he used to look, as if through her, now she clearly feels that he is looking into her face, and even several times has turned her face with his hands to look at her.
April 16 (3 weeks after starting treatment)
Some issues that were experienced during time included a respiratory infection, in which the child was very moody/unpredictable, and the child being fussy in regards to food.
Some positive changes included:
- Improved sleep,
- The understanding/comprehension of questions, commands, suggestions, etc. has improved (can understand when their mother says "no", and follows instructions),
- Started paying attention to people around, watching them, and trying to draw attention to himself,
- Improved eye contact - is now able to look into the eyes of strangers,
- When attending speech therapy, is able to repeat the words that are spoken to him,
- Began to say a few new words: "yes", "all done", "stop", "open", "close", "hop-hop" (when jumping),
- Began to differentiate people - reacts positively towards those he is familiar with, does not interact with strangers readily,
- Has become more emotional: shows joy, sadness, anger in accordance with the situation,
- Improved non-verbal contact, more often began to hold my mother's hand (did not hold it before), greets strangers with handshake,
- Became calmer, unreasonable tantrums have disappeared
April 27 (a month since the start of treatment)
- The child has improved intellectually: he began to compare figures (for example, he compared pictures with a starfish and stars), began to find toys after seeing similar objects in the picture (for example, he saw a fish picture and then he showed his toy-fish), began to show on parts of the body when asked to show eyes, nose, ears, etc., and began to build simple constructions from cubes (where he could not before)
- Continuing to increase vocabulary: pointing to pictures, while calling them, for example “star”, “fish”,
- Knows the alphabet by heart. When parents teach him the alphabet, they show cards with letters and words that begin with these letters. When telling the alphabet (without looking at the cards) he calls the letter and the word, counts from 1 to 7,
- The aggression towards the elder members of the family has disappeared, stopped trying to hit them when he cannot get what he wants,
- Increased duration of eye contact,
- Repeats simple words after speech therapist,
- It became easy to repeat routine commands (take, open, sit, go, etc.),
- He takes the initiative in everyday activities (opens the doors, presses the buttons of elevators, etc.),
- He can still try to escape, but if he does not try if you hold his hand,
- The teacher notes that the child quickly loses focus, distracted. Mom notes that this only happens in unfamiliar surroundings, which suggests that the child is interested in objects around him,
The last meeting - May 10th - a month and a half from the start of treatment.
- Continued development of verbal skills, where the child began to try building sentences. If he wants to eat something, he calls what he would like to eat and adds the word to eat. For example, “eat porridge”, “eat pizza”, when a month and a half ago, when mother addressed us, the child did not speak at all,
- The active accumulation of vocabulary has continued,
- The child also learned several very simple rhymes (banana-nana, etc.), and also learned and can sing the alphabet song,
- Began to distinguish colors from each other,
- Fine and large motor skills has continued to develop; for the first time the child was able to open the bottle himself, walks without falling, etc.),
- There was an interest in new types of food (for the first time wanted to try a lemon),
- Demonstrated an understanding of social etiquette (before he enters someone's office or apartment, he will knock the door),
- Continued improvement of understanding/comprehension (fulfills the requests of relatives, etc.),
- Attachment to relatives has appeared, as he will hug them when they come around,
- Eye contact has become noticeably longer,
- Sensory sensitivity began to decline, before the child was afraid of the loud sounds of home appliances (e.g. when he heard the blender he didn't react with terror, but instead surprise)
We need to point that seeing such rapid improvements is not usually the case. Usually it takes 6-7 months to see such improvements.
This child is still continuing treatment. We will update as we receive new information.