How to Treat Autism, ADD, ADHD, Dyslexia & Dyspraxia
How do you treat autism – not just the symptoms but the root causes? Can the autism diagnosis be permanently reversed? Our child deserved nothing less than a reversed diagnosis, and we didn’t stop until we achieved our goal. Here’s everything we learned along the way about how to treat autism spectrum disorders.
Autism Spectrum Disorders Are A Symptom, Not A Diagnosis
Autism Spectrum Disorders Are A Symptom, Not A Diagnosis
Recently an MIT research scientist predicted that half of all children will be autistic by 2025 . I can offer my own observation that in my children’s mainstream public school classes, about 25% of the children appear to have undiagnosed autism spectrum disorders, including: Autism, ADD, ADHD, Dyslexia or Dyspraxia. I group these diagnoses all together because I believe that they stem from the same root cause, similar to the work and hypotheses of Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride . Before I continue, let me state in advance that my goal is to offer a different, unique perspective on these, based on both my research and experience. I do not believe that autism spectrum disorders are a diagnosis, but rather a symptom. My focus here is on what I believe are the root causes. I’m not interested in managing symptoms, I’m interested in reversing the diagnosis. I call it “DAP” – Defeating Autism Permanently.
Let me start with our direct autism experience. In hindsight I can say that our oldest child had lots of autistic symptoms. Like most parents, I explained or justified these away. “That’s just the way she is” or “Her grandfather is like that too.” Many of us parents do this until the symptoms become so debilitating that we can no longer deny a diagnosis.
Her initial symptoms were avoiding eye contact, over sensitivity to pain, avoiding cuddling, and difficulty transitioning from one activity to another. These may not seem so serious, but they progressively got worse between the ages of 2-4, until she finally was rocking back and forth in a dark corner closet, unable to speak or interact at all.
Today this child is at the top of her mainstream, age-appropriate classroom. We often get compliments on her behavior, ability to focus, social skills, and overall glow of health. I whole-heartedly hope that other parents out there have the strength and energy to achieve the same results. Your child deserves it – and you are the only one with the power to reverse the diagnosis.
I heard Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride at a conference say that autism can be fully reversed before age 8. After age 8, there is permanent damage to the brain. I challenge and beg all of the parents out there to do as much as they can for their autistic children before age 8. It will not be easy, but is so important. Now. If you don’t help your child, who will? (Hint: The US medical community focuses on managing symptoms.)
How To Treat Autism
I have yet to see a case of autism that can’t be treated. I have yet to see a younger-than-8 case that hasn’t been able to be fully reversed, when the will to reverse the diagnosis is strong enough. Three D’s were essential to learning how to treat autism:
These D’s are in priority order from most helpful to least helpful. Ok, on to details about each of the D’s – they are not as easy as they might sound.
Diet / Gut
I agree with Dr. McBride that diet and gut health are the most important tools we have in the how-to-treat-autism toolbox . Details on what diet I think is essential for autism can be found in the best diet for health section. Along with tightening up the diet, healing leaky gut is equally important. This may sound easy, but changing the diet and healing the gut are huge challenges! They will take a lot of strength, dedication, and hard work. This may seem like a short section, but the two links above are quite long, with lots of different pieces involved. Several pieces of healing leaky gut are not well known, like checking stomach acid and treating hiatal hernias. These are essential autism treatment puzzle.
Unfortunately autistic symptoms will get worse as bacteria in the gut start to shift and die. This can be frustrating at best, heartbreaking is more often the case. These symptoms become better with Detoxification and Drainage work. Detox and Drainage are the next two D’s in the how to treat autism puzzle.
Most practitioners don’t understand the concept of drainage, let alone how to fix it. This is a real tragedy. Drainage refers to opening excretory pathways in the body. These pathways are at both the physical and energetic levels. Acupuncturists might think of these drainage pathways as meridians. These may already be open for some people, but they often aren’t, especially for autistic people.
Drainage means there is a clear and open path to excretion for the toxins. On the other hand, detoxification refers to methods used to actively pull the toxins out of the body. If drainage pathways aren’t open, the detoxification won’t work. Both of these are essential pieces in how to treat autism, and for leaving symptoms behind.
Symptoms of blocked drainage pathways are pretty indistinguishable from symptoms of detoxification failures: skin issues, Herx, brain fog, autism, fatigue, inflammation. We typically test both for detoxification solutions and drainage solutions when symptoms arise.
Typically drainage remedies are homeopathic or herbal. We’ve also had ZYTO drainage treatments and those can work as well. We’ve spent thousands of dollars trying different drainage remedies. Different brands. Different lines from those brands. Different formulations. Herbal. Homeopathic. The most effective drainage products we’ve found, in rank order from most helpful to least helpful are as follows (remember, I don’t get any $$ from referral links or product endorsements):
- TerrainMax Terrain Remedies – The problem with these is that there are a lot of different possibilities. The one needed will often change every few weeks or every month. We have tested them all over many years both at home and with ZYTO. If I were to only buy a few of them, our most frequented ones are: Kidney, Liver, Skin, Neural, Stomach, Bladder, Lymph, Gallbladder, Colon. These are the ones we most often take, but when we really need Pancreas or Brain, for example, then we really need them. Honestly, I highly recommend buying the whole line. The bottles will last for a long time, even with 4 people in our house. Dosage is 5-10 drops 2x/day either rubbed into the arm or taken orally. If just starting on Terrain Remedies, I would ramp up the number of drops starting with one. You can get these from accuatlanta.net or www.naturalhealthyconcepts.com. For the later, call and mention that your practitioner is out-of-town.
- Energetix Remedies – Again, there are a lot of these to choose from. Specifically helpful for Autism seem to be: Lymph Tone I, Lymph Tone II, Lymph Tone III, Bacteria Chord, Colo Chord, Core Echina B. Dosage is the same as the terrain remedies.
- ZYTO Drainage Treatment – These biocommunication devices and energetic treatments can really help with drainage pathways. Really. We may not fully understand them, but they work. We also use ZYTO to determine which of all of the other drainage remedies to take. We have them all in our database, and ZYTO will rank them for us. This ranking is consistent with our home testing, and yields great results. After a biocommunication session, I usually spend about 45 minutes per person ‘digesting’ the information. This includes updating drainage remedies. Typically we take the top 3 drainage remedies recommended by ZYTO at all times.
- Cranial Structural Issues – Our cranium is a 22-piece puzzle. If the bones in the head are in an improper position, it can create pressure on the spinal cord and central nervous system. This can compromise the body’s drainage pathways. I would also check oral function on our ability to drain and detoxify. For more details, please see the Orthodontics section.
- Futureplex Line – Bacterotox, Lmph-Max have been the most useful in this line.
- Pekana Remedies – Itires, Renelix and Toxex. These can only be purchased from a practitioner, as far as I know.
There are a lot of drainage remedies, and buying them all and testing them all by hand is expensive and tedious. This is where I would use ZYTO to narrow down which might work the best. If no scan is available, then I would try these first: Neural Terrain, Brain Terrain, Lymph Terrain, Colon Terrain, Lymph Tone I-III, Renelix. Drainage remedies will often need to change as the pathways ‘unstick’ in one place but might get stuck in another. Sometimes only a few days of a remedy are needed, sometimes a few weeks. The good news it’s no problem if you stay on a remedy too long, you’re pocketbook is the only thing that will suffer.
Below is another example video of testing drainage remedies at home.
If our bodies can’t excrete toxins, they can end up affecting our brain. When dealing with autism, there are typically lots of toxins circulating and symptoms are often neurological. These toxins may be from bacteria, chemicals, or even heavy metals passed down at birth. The question ‘How to Treat Autism Symptoms’ should almost be ‘How to Get Rid of Toxins!’ Here is a list of what was most helpful for detoxification. The list is in rank order from most helpful to least helpful.
- Supplements – Supplements called ‘binders’ can help bind to the toxins and make them easier for the body to excrete. We’ve spent lots of time and money trying various detoxification supplements. The ones that work consistently the best for us, in rank order from best to worst, are as follows:
- Activated Charcoal – Nature’s Way Activated Charcoal consistently tests the best on us. We have tried many brands, I’m not sure why this one tests the best.
- Diatomaceous Earth (DE) – Animal grade actually tests just as well on us as human grade.
- E3 Live – This is a live green algae product. Surprisingly, this often tests best during a detox crisis.
- Liver Chi – This one has a different mechanism than the above (herbs for liver detox), but I have also found it useful during detox crises.
I will typically test these remedies to see which will work the best. The supplements are usually taken orally, and sometimes I mix the powders into a lotion. We use raw shea butter as the lotion base. I apply the lotion to the lymph watersheds, liver, or kidney areas of the body. I typically get an even faster response by putting them into an enema. The best way I can demonstrate the testing techniques is with example videos. Check out the Intro video first if these debugging methods are new.
- Enemas – The enema is the fastest thing we’ve found to relieve acute symptoms. Even a water or drug store Fleet enema can really help. We usually put whatever is testing well in our enema. The example video below demonstrates how we test what goes into our enemas. Things that typically go into our enema might be Minerals, Detoxification Supplements or Binders (see above), or Drainage remedies. How do you get a young autistic child to do an enema? The only way I know is bribery. I’m not a huge fan of bribing children, but this is one exception. It was easy in our case – we don’t watch TV so allowing my 3-year-old to watch TV while doing the enema did the trick. After the first one, she started asking almost daily if she could have one. The How to Give a Child an Enema article has more details.
- Sweat – The skin is our largest organ, and sweating is a great way to release toxins. We go into an IR Sauna twice per week for 30 minutes at 120F. We go from the sauna straight to a cold shower to close our pores so the toxins aren’t re-absorbed. Then we scrub our skin with soap and water. I haven’t observed much difference in results between the IR sauna and a traditional sauna. Our oldest child completely lost her ability to sweat from years of chronic Lyme, so we had to slowly ramp up her time in the Sauna. Raw Hypothalamus Concentrate from Bio Design also helped her start sweating again.
- Skin Brushing – Skin brushing helps move the lymphatic system. We found this treatment less useful after we started the Sauna. I’m guessing going from hot to cold in the Sauna actually pumps the lymph so much that skin brushing no longer makes a difference. If no sauna is available, then skin brushing might be higher on this list. This skin brushing video gives a decent explanation.
- Liver Massage – Dr. Klinghardt’s liver massage is another great detox therapy for autistic kids. Instructional videos can be found here and here. Be ready for lots of toxin release and a potential flare-up. Dr. Klinghardt recommends taking Chlorella a few hours before the massage to help bind and excrete the toxins. In addition to the Chlorella, I found activated charcoal was also needed.
Diet. Detox. Drainage. These are the three topics that need to be addressed to clear up autism. Three big pieces of the how to treat autism puzzle. Easy? No. Possible? Yes.
There is one other item in addition to the three D’s that I think was helpful to getting our autism under control: Methylation. I don’t think this was as useful as the three D’s, but still worth mentioning. Check out the MTHFR treatment section for more details about methylation.
In the course of working on parasites and chelation (more on these in the next sections), I have observed some autistic behaviors returning. Metals and toxins circulating in the body often imbalance bacteria in the gut, creating more toxins in the brain. Toxins can be released from the bodies of parasites as they die. I have also observed autistic behaviors flare up after vaccination. If there is a stuck drainage pathway, this may cause toxins to build up enough to start autistic behaviors. Going back to the three D’s in How To Treat Autism, I usually have behavior back to normal in 24-48 hours.
Defeat Autism Permanently (DAP)
There is a movement called DAN (Defeat Autism Now), which focuses mostly on managing symptoms, therapy, etc. Personally, I don’t want my children to live by managing their autism spectrum disorders. I refuse to accept the diagnosis. I believe autism is a symptom, not a diagnosis. The question ‘How to Treat Autism’ is answered above with the three D’s. Now I want to discuss how to reverse the autism diagnosis. Permanently.
Everyone who meets my severely autistic child now thinks she is completely normal and doesn’t believe that she was ever autistic. However, I want my children to be permanently free of autism, not on the border of a relapse. I want my children to live ‘normal’ lives, eating out if they want, staying out late with friends if they want. I want them to enjoy and live life fully. I don’t want them to make one exception to their lifestyle and end up autistic again. After addressing all of the issues in the previous section (diet / gut, detox, drainage), our daugter’s autism was long gone. However, to achieve permanence with a wider range of lifestyles, I think the chelation, parasites, and gastrointestinal / immune health need to be addressed.
Metals set up an environment for dysbiotic bacteria, yeast, gut dysfunction, and parasites. The immune system, digestive tract, and overall bodily functions become compromised by these heavy metals, chemicals, and toxins. Chelation is difficult and may actually cause autistic symptoms to return. If this happens, I go back to the How To Treat Autism section to figure out where things are stuck, but I don’t give up on chelation. I think it is essential to permanently defeating autism. More details and tips for chelation can be found in the chelation therapy section.
There have been no clinical trials linking parasites to autism. There have been lots of anecdotal stories, and even an article from an MD. I would love to see a clinical trial linking parasites to autism. First, we’d have to get some doctors in this country actually diagnosing and treating parasites! My opinion? If there are autistic spectrum disorders, there are are probably parasites.
Parasites love the digestive tract, as well as our organs. They eat the lining of our digestive tract and create an environment perfect for gastrointestinal dysbiosis and immune dysfunction. Dying parasites, especially worms, release bacteria, viruses and toxins into our system. This can cause autistic symptoms to re-appear. If this happens, I go back to the How To Treat Autism section, but I don’t give up on treating parasites.
Unfortunately treating parasites is not as easy as it sounds. Very few practitioners are on board, and there are no reliable standard lab tests. It’s a difficult path, but hopefully the Parasites in Humans section will help you get started.
Diet & Lifestyle
My final comment about permanently defeating autism is to permanently maintain a state of gut health and immune function. This means that I think that ‘Diet’ should no longer be a ‘Diet’ but rather become the way we eat. We feel better when we eat well, and I think that has to become permanent. The hope is that after chelation and parasite work, one will be able to eat out on occasion without a major relapse. An upset tummy and not feeling well will be reminders not to ‘cheat’ very often. Eventually you won’t even want to ‘cheat’ anymore.
In addition to diet, dialing in other lifestyle issues is essential to maintaining gastrointestinal and immune health. This means exercise, sleep, and stress reduction. Ideas for adults can be found in the lifestyle, sleep, exercise & stress section. But what about kids? Here’s what we do on lifestyle topics for the kids:
- Sleep – Naps on the weekends for both kids until ages 8 & 5. The 8-year-old got to stop naps at the same time as the 5-year-old. Parents say if their kids take naps they won’t sleep at night. I don’t buy it. What they are really saying is that they don’t have the discipline to make it happen. Sleep begets sleep. Naps actually help them sleep better at night. Consistency is key. Same time every day for naps/bedtime. Even if you have to leave that party early. Vomiting, crying, screaming don’t work to change the routine. I don’t play those games. I don’t drive the kids around in the car. ‘Nuff said from the mean ogre parent who has well-rested children! Now that my kids no longer nap, they are in bed by 7:30pm and wake up at 6:30am. We have a routine of brushing our teeth, journal writing or reading, and meditation before bed. The children are asleep at night by 8pm, so really they are getting about 10.5 hours of sleep per night. We know that elementary age children actually need about 10 hours, on average, of sleep. Yes, this means that we miss parties that start at 7pm. See social and emotional aspects of healing for more details.
- Exercise – Our kids get as much as possible. They ride their bikes every day to school, and often their chosen extracurricular activities are some kind of sport.
- Consistency of Routine – We keep the timing of breakfast, lunch, dinner, and bed consistent.
- Overscheduling – We do not overschedule the children or ourselves – maximum of 1 extra-curricular activity per day, and maximum of 1 activity (sport, music, etc) per child at a time.
- Talk at the Dinner Table – We use the dinner table as a chance to connect and release emotions. We go around the table and discuss things like “What was good today? What was bad today?” The person who is talking gets to pick the next person to talk. Some days we say “What are you thankful for? What are you looking forward to?” This gets the children talking and asking questions. One of the most important lessons the children are learning is that us parents also have bad things happen. We fail too. They learn from how we deal with these failures. Our dinner topics were inspired by Christine Carter’s article Don’t Short Change Dinnertime.
- Meditation – Meditation with kids sounds like an oxymoron. I’ve found it’s a powerful tool for children to feel connection and control in this world. We rotate our pre-bedtime meditation depending on what is going on. Sometimes we chant, sometimes we sing, sometimes we meditate about our day or our difficult situations. Here is a video of us singing our rendition of “I’m So Glad” (sung with express permission from the Persuasions). This chant is from Wade Morisette and is great because of the relaxing quality of the chanting along with some fill-in-the-blanks for us to chant about whatever is going on for us. Here is another video of us being thankful. One favorite is Christine Carter’s loving kindness meditation. The short version:
May I be healthy and strong
May I be happy
May I be filled with ease
We then substitute “I” for “you”, then for a friendly person, a difficult person, and even “all beings”
Here’s the part where I wish I were a cheerleader. I’m not. I’m an engineer and a scientist. The items in How To Treat Autism and Defeating Autism Permanently may sound easy and harmless. They’re not. They take a will of steel and the persistence of a marathon runner. Doctors, friends, neighbors may be totally unsupportive. “If symptoms get worse, STOP,” they will say. I say DEBUG. Keep pushing forward. Don’t give up. If I can do it, others can too. See social and emotional aspects of healing for a little more inspiration from a non-cheerleading scientist (for whatever that’s worth!).
Q: I have a child who won’t take pills, won’t do enemas, and who barely cooperates with anything. Where would you start?
A: I would start with the three D’s: Detox, Drainage, and Diet. I would check with a ZYTO practitioner to help determine detox and drainage remedies that might help (see the list above under How to Treat Autism.) If no practitioner is available, then I would try surrogate testing at home some of these remedies. Here, here, and here are some examples. Skin brushing or liver massage might be good starting points for detox. I have also been known to open up capsules and put them in water. Drainage remedies typically go on the skin, and they also taste good in the mouth. For diet, get rid of all sugars, including sweet vegetables. If the child won’t eat, they won’t eat. They will eat eventually when they get hungry enough. My child was quite stubborn and went 36 hours without eating before she finally relented. No exceptions, all the time. See the sections on healing leaky gut and social and emotional aspects of healing for more tips.
Q: What do you think about Chlorine Dioxide (CD) and the work of Kerri Riviera.
A: Let me be brutally honest (like I’ve held anything back so far on this site!!). Kerri is doing great work, and deserves lots of praise and credit. Here’s the thing: CD kills everything, good bacteria as well as bad bacteria. If the digestive tract is really horribly dysfunctional, with no colonization of good bacteria in a stool test, then CD might not be a bad option. Kill everything. But now that everything is dead, how do you ensure that the good guys prevail? If the good guys don’t prevail, food won’t be digested and assimilated properly, and the immune system won’t function properly. This seems like quite a challenge to me. Furthermore, I think the ‘diet’ piece is much more important than Kerri does, specifically that eliminating sugars is essential. She is spot on about parasites and worms, with some of the best pictures and stories out there. However, she misses flukes entirely. She also doesn’t seem to understand drainage. This is fine if your child doesn’t have a drainage issue, but many autistic children have a stuck drainage pathway. My concerns about CD enemas are the same as my concerns about oral CD.
 Campbell-McBride, Natasha, Gut and Psyhology Syndrome, Medinform Publishing 2010.
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