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Autism news: I hope this never happens to you...Behavior Problems Part 2
October 11, 2019
I hope that nothing like the following scenario ever happens in your family (true story):
Mom was busy washing dishes one evening when suddenly she heard the door alarm sound: “Fault! Front door,” said the mechanical-sounding feminine voice.
She froze for a split second: why would the door alarm sound off? Immediately she looked toward the couch where “Michael”, her autistic son had been sitting, and saw that his place was empty.
She ran to the door—it was wide open.
Instantly, she knew Michael had bolted out of the house.
With no time to think, Mom ran out of the house with dish in hand. She hadn’t even had time to set the dish down.
“Michael! Come here! Michael! Come back right now!” she shouted as she ran after him.
Mom’s worst fears came to mind. The freeway was only a short distance away. Would Michael do the unthinkable and run out into traffic?
“Michael!” Mom kept calling as she raced after him.
Although Michael was the fastest runner, Mom was relieved when he stopped at the end of the street and came back to her.
Her heart was still pounding. “Why did you run away like that, Michael?” she asked while trying to catch her breath.
She was a bit perplexed when she saw that Michael actually looked frightened. He was shaking, and his face was as white as a ghost.
Michael had never run away like that before, but this incident was the first in a long line of problems they continued to experience for the next few months.
Mom had to take safety measures such as installing double cylinder deadbolts on both the front and back doors of the house. A key would be required to open either door from the inside.
After a lot of research, Mom found out that Michael was suffering from Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD).
When a child has an OCD attack, s/he is both tempted and afraid to do something bad or harmful all at the same time. That’s why Michael was so frightened. He was tempted to bolt, but also extremely afraid to do so.
Mom couldn’t understand why Michael had a sudden onset of OCD attacks until she found severe mold contamination in the room where Michael had been sleeping.
Medical tests confirmed that Michael had developed a severe allergy to mold because of his constant exposure to it while sleeping in that room.
She moved him out of his room until the mold problem could be fixed, and made sure he received medical help for the mold allergy...
I hope you and your family never have to endure what Michael’s family had to suffer.
Allergic reactions can cause severe behavior problems, and allergies to mold are no exception.
If you live in a hot, humid climate, mold growth is a problem you will need to be on the lookout for. But even in less humid climates, mold can still grow if you ever have water damage in your home.
Keep in mind that in a moist environment, such as wet drywall, plywood, carpet, etc. mold can begin growing within 48 hours. Constant exposure to any allergen such as mold can cause a new allergy to develop, even if your child wasn’t allergic before.
In the last email I sent to you, I discussed allergies to chemicals and harsh cleaners and how they can cause our kids to act out.
If your child is misbehaving a lot, consider having her tested for allergies to chemicals and mold, among other things.
When our kids have behavior issues, we as parents need to put on our detective hat and investigate why they are having these problems.
In our efforts to help our kids, we need to get to the root of the problem so we can eliminate whatever is causing it—especially because many of our kids are actually suffering from physical or medical problems that we don’t want to ignore. Such conditions could become worse over time if left untreated.
Over the next few weeks, I’ll be sending you more information on other causes of misbehavior in our children. In the meantime, let’s be champions for our kids to give them the best life possible.
Discover Autism Help, LLC
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