By Dr. George Springer
In the past decade there has been a staggering increase in childhood autism and ADD/ADHD. It is now estimated that 1 in 88 children have autism spectrum disorders and that 3%-7% of school children are diagnosed with ADD/ADHD (Attention Deficit Disorder/Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder).
Autism Spectrum Disorder
Autism (or ASD) is a wide-spectrum disorder, meaning no two people will have exactly the same symptoms. Autism typically presents itself during the first three years of a person’s life, and is a disorder characterized by impaired development, social interaction and communication. It is usually parents who first notice “something strange” about their young child’s behavior. He or she does not seem to go into communication when spoken to. They appear to be in their own world. They may seem indifferent to what’s going on, may talk to people in an odd, repetitive way, paying little attention to their responses. Some autistic children also behave in a challenging way, screaming or biting and kicking other people, perhaps because they are anxious and frightened.
Although we tend to think of autism as a disorder in children, it is not something that one “grows out of”. Since it is often overlooked by physicians when treating adult patients with behavioral problems, there are likely thousands of adults living with undiagnosed autism.
Attention deficit disorder (ADD) and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder is the most commonly diagnosed behavioral disorder of childhood, and is diagnosed much more often in boys than in girls. The symptom complex includes poor sustained attention, learning disabilities, and hyperactive behavior, causing problems at home, school and in relationships.
Like autism, the symptoms of ADD/ADHD may begin in childhood and will often continue into adulthood, where common symptoms may include chronic lateness, angry outbursts, marital difficulties, reckless driving and a marked lack of organization.
The Common Denominator
Clinical and laboratory evaluation reveal that children with ADD/ADHD and Autism have a high body burden of environmental toxins, food allergies, and significant nutritional deficiencies that lead to inflammatory damage in the developing nervous system. At the same time, nearly all of these children show inflammatory change in their gastrointestinal tract that increases their sensitivity to many common foods and so called “leaky gut.” Most show yeast and bacterial overgrowth, deficiencies of good bacterial flora and seems to contribute to an almost pathologic preference for unhealthy foods in these children.
Many of the children diagnosed with ADD/ADHD or autism are prescribed dangerous pharmaceutical drugs such as Ritalin, Paxil, Resperdal, etc., many of which have not been approved for use in children. They do not cure, but only attempt to mask and in the process delay the diagnosis of the true cause of the condition. Dr. George Springer has over 30 years experience in utilizing natural solutions to correct these problems in children. In his practice he has found that every child seen with ADD, ADHD or autism has a significant problem with their digestive system, whether they are symptomatic of it or not.
Also, many of these children appear to have a detoxification system that is slow in removing heavy metals from their bodies. The toxin levels accumulate and cause injury to the brain and other systems, resulting in the problems we see in autism- spectrum children.
Diet can play a key role. A diet high in carbs and sugar not only feeds mold and yeast but also stimulates epinephrine from the adrenal glands, which increase neurological activity. Also, because of the digestive issues, there is often a problem with protein metabolism which has a direct effect on neurotransmitters since most of these brain “chemicals” are literally made from proteins.
It is important that a doctor listen to the unique circumstances affecting your child. There should be a preliminary functional evaluation to determine all of the issues that are contributing to your child’s problem. Laboratory tests oftentimes should be ordered to gather more information so the issues can be identified.
A personalized program utilizing natural supplementation, allergy elimination, homeopathy and diet is key to correcting your child’s problems. The wholistic approach helps identify all of the factors which may be contributing to the problem, and then natural solutions to can be used to help correct them.
Dr. George Springer has practiced alternative medicine, nutrition, acupuncture, and chiropractic manipulation for over 30 years. As the father of 5 sons, he is concerned to see the increasing number of children being diagnosed with autism, ADD/ADHD and hyperactivity. Over the years he has helped a large number of these children regain normal activity using all-natural solutions.