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Caring for Adults With Autism

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Although symptoms may change and even improve, autism is a lifelong condition that presents many challenges through adulthood. Whether an adult with autism lives in a group home, independently, or with family, he or she still requires parental or some support.

Just as children with autism vary in their capabilities, so do adults. Some autistic adults are completely dependent on parents or other caregivers, while others are able to live a semi-independent life.

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Autism spectrum disorders (ASD) are developmental disorders that affect children by disrupting their ability to communicate and interact socially. To reduce a child's symptoms of autism, parents often try alternative treatments such as specialized diets. Lately, the gluten-free/casein-free diet has grown in popularity. Some parents report improvements in autism symptoms with this dietary regimen. Little research has been done, though, on the gluten-free/casein-free diet for autism. Consequently,...

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Resources for adults vary by state and community, but vocational training programs exist in many areas. These programs can help eligible adults with autism work on daily living skills to help them be as independent as possible. Sometimes supported employment opportunities are available, which allow both training and employment for the disabled. Information about state programs can usually be found in the yellow pages of your telephone book under the state Department of Vocational Rehabilitation. Contact support groups or a health professional for help in finding regional programs.

Parents must plan for the future of a child with autism. The cost of care, eligibility for government assistance, and the individual skills and abilities of the child should all be taken into consideration. Some government services may pay in part or in full for your child's adult care, depending upon different factors, such as your income. Become familiar with tax issues and estate planning to ensure that your child will have proper care and necessary resources available should you die. If you have other children who have developed normally, include them in the planning.

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WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: April 03, 2012
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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