Vision Therapy for Neurodevelopmental Disorders Such as Autism

Vision Therapy for Neurodevelopmental Disorders

Vision Therapy for Neurodevelopmental Disorders Such as Autism

by Maria Rickert Hong, Certified Holistic Health Counselor, AADP I am fortunate to have Dr. Randy Schulman, MS, OD, FCOVD, as my sons’ behavioral optometrist.  Dr. Schulman wrote the chapters on the role of vision therapy and optometry in Patty Lemer’s book, “Envisioning a Bright Future:  Interventions that Work for Children and Adults with Autism Spectrum Disorders“, which I reviewed earlier.  Patty was the one who recommended Dr. Schulman to me, and she practices in my area. Patty has always talked about the importance of vision therapy for people with autism, ADHD, sensory processing disorder (SPD), learning disabilities and other neurological disorders.  Now I know why.  In fact, Patty’s book was published by the Optometric Extension Program Foundation, which should give you a clue as to the importance of vision in neurodevelopmental disorders. Vision Problems a Cause of Many ASD Symptoms I was astounded to learn that vision problems are a CAUSE of, not a by-product of, many ASD symptoms. …

Secretin and Gut Neuropeptides

Secretin and Gut Neuropeptides

Secretin and Gut Neuropeptides

By Kelly Dorfman, MS, LND (Co-founder of Developmental Delay Resources) Secretin is a hormone that induces the pancreas to release bicarbonate, thereby adjusting the pH of the small intestine so that digestive enzymes can function. As one of 20 known gut neuropeptides, secretin has the ability to interact with both the digestive tract and the brain.  In other words, through these messenger molecules one’s capacity for digestion can affect cognitive function. The stomach and intestines are thus a small non-thinking brain whose activities directly impact their thinking counterpart in the head.  When secretin is not properly regulating pancreatic function, its receptor sites in the language areas of brain may not be activated either. When Developmental Delay Resources observed a link between aggressive antibiotic therapy or immunization reactions and developmental delays, much of the medical community flippantly dismissed us as crackpots. Now, years later, the accidental discovery of the importance of secretin may prove in retrospect how damaging antibiotics and immunizations…

What Is Wrong With Milk?

What Is Wrong With Milk?

What Is Wrong With Milk?

by Patricia S. Lemer, M.Ed., NCC, Chairman of the Board, Epidemic Answers Drink your milk so that you will grow up big and strong.  How many of us heard those words as young children and still heed them? This wisdom is being renewed by advertisements showing our favorite stars with milk mustaches telling us that they drink their milk. Not only do we insist that our children have their daily allowance, but we as women are using dairy products to strengthen our bones and get our calcium. Because we are obsessed about fat content, we now buy 2% or skim, but it is not the fat that is problematic; it is the additives and the casein, or dairy protein. What Is Wrong with Milk? Unfortunately, today’s milk, like much of today’s food, is chemically different than the milk of a generation ago. It is ultra-pasteurized, has traces of growth hormones fed to the cows from which it came, and is…

Ear Infection Treatment and Prevention

Ear Infection Treatment and Prevention

Ear Infection Treatment and Prevention

by Alan R. Gaby, MD One of the most common medical problems in children, surpassed only by colds and sore throats, is otitis media, inflammation of the middle ear.  Nearly one-third of all two-year-olds will have had three or more episodes.  The annual cost of diagnosing and treating this condition exceeds $2 billion. Although typically treated with antibiotics, acute ear infections usually run their course without treatment.  Doctors disagree whether long-term antibiotic therapy is advisable for children who suffer recurrent infections.  Although such treatment does prevent recurrence, benefits are limited. More controversial is whether children with chronic ear infections should get ear tubes.  The tubes’ purpose is to equilibrate pressure on both sides of the eardrum, thereby improving hearing and preventing problems with speech development and learning. However, putting a hole in the eardrum can allow bacteria to enter the middle ear.  Research shows that improved hearing lasts only six months and that inserting tubes may actually worsen hearing.  Furthermore,…

The Organic Acid Test

The Organic Acid Test

The Organic Acid Test

by Kelly Dorfman, MS, LND The medical histories of distractible children often include frequent use of antibiotics or steroids, digestive disturbances and/or allergies. Any one of these can impair immune functioning and pre-dispose children to the overgrowth of small amounts of pathological bacteria and yeast that normally reside in the gut in controlled amounts. Organic Acid Test Dr. William Shaw, the Director of Great Plains Laboratory, has discovered a way to monitor the by-products or metabolites of imbalanced gut flora in children with developmental issues ranging from attention deficits to autism. He does this by quantifying specific organic acids in the urine, a test known as the Organic Acid Test (OAT).  These substances are part of a large family of organic acids that have been observed for years in youngsters with genetic disorders. Unlike organic acids traditionally measured to diagnose chromosome abnormalities and other syndromes, the obscure set of organic acids Dr. Shaw decided to study, appears to be the…

Antibiotic Alternatives

Antibiotic Alternatives

Antibiotic Alternatives

by Dr. Michael Schmidt For decades, antibiotics have been the cornerstone of treatment for bacterial infections. Antibiotics have saved many lives during this time.  However, doctors have come to rely too heavily on these miracle drugs and the overuse of antibiotics has led to serious problems. For all of the potential benefits of antibiotics, a growing list of adverse health consequences has emerged because of overuse.  A sample of these is listed below: Children with chronic earaches who take many series of antibiotics experience 2-6 times more recurrent ear infections. Antibiotic overuse can upset intestinal integrity. Antibiotic overuse can suppress immune function. Factors that Lower Immunity We know that there are many factors that lower immunity and thus make the body more susceptible to infection.  These include: Nutrition:  Low vitamin C and zinc lead to sluggish immune response. Diet:  Excess sugar consumption slows the ability of white blood cells to engulf and destroy bacteria. Lifestyle:  Sedentary people tend to have…

Acid Reflux in Babies:  Another Red Flag

Acid Reflux in Babies: Another Red Flag

Acid Reflux in Babies:  Another Red Flag

by Maria Rickert Hong, CHHC, AADP Acid reflux in babies:  Both of my sons had acid reflux as babies.  Prevacid wasn’t the answer; undoing their gut dysbiosis was. When my younger son was born, he, too, was “fussy” and “colicky”.  He had an outright problem with nursing:  he refused to. When he would, he would shriek in pain or fill up so much (probably because he was starving) that he would throw it right back up. Again, this wasn’t a little “spitting up”; this was projectile vomiting and, by now, I had become used to having stains on the rug, chairs and clothes that simply wouldn’t come out. The pediatrician referred a lactation specialist who recommended that I cut out all dairy products from my diet.  She said that dairy was the most likely culprit in causing pain to my son. Probiotics Not Enough She also recommended that I take a probiotic, “the refrigerated kind, like they sell at Whole…

Mia now

Mia: Recovery from Autism

Mia now

I am releasing this story here as a means to get this story out to as many people as possible.  I am a physical therapist for 14 years, a healthcare provider; I am a husband and a dad. I do not work in pediatric physical therapy.  That particular patient population is not my clientele, and I do not plan on specializing in pediatric physical therapy in the future. I have nothing to gain from this at all except for my colleagues in health care and the doctors who refer to me to think of me as a quack or a nut. That being said, I feel that it is my moral and ethical duty to share this story to you and anyone willing to take the time to read it.  It may help them or someone that they know. My wife’s sister’s son is autistic, I had an entire pediatric internship in pediatrics dealing with developmentally delayed children, some who…

Rodger:  Asthma Recovery

Rodger: Recovery from Asthma

Rodger:  Asthma Recovery

Here’s my son Rodger’s story of recovery from asthma. Rodger was a fairly healthy and typical toddler until he began to show signs of environmental allergies and asthma around three years of age. While he did have eczema (a subtle sign of immune dysregulation) as a baby, there were no other signs that anything was amiss with Rodger as an infant or toddler. Because Rodger’s father, Rodger Sr. has known allergies to nuts, they kept highly allergenic foods out of Rodger’s diet to protect him from any possible harm. When Rodger entered preschool at three years old, Celia and Rodger Sr. knew they could not control their son’s exposure to allergens, so they felt an allergy test was in order.  Sure enough, Rodger tested positive on a serum IgE test to shellfish and nuts. Celia and Rodger closely monitored his exposure to these foods from that point on because they knew how dangerous these allergies could be. During September of…