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Mercury and Autism - Research Paper Example

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Name: Course: Date: Mercury and Autism Autism is a developmental disorder, which makes children experience a different life from that experienced by normal healthy children. It is characterized by impaired development in communication, behaviors, and social interactions (Ball, 148)…
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Mercury and Autism
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Download file to see previous pages This disorder affects how the nerve cells in the brain connect to synapses, thus affecting the way information is processed in the brain. As a result, an individual suffers from communication problem as well as restricted and repetitive behavior (Gerber, 456). However, with cognitive care, those children suffering from the disorder can be assisted to have a more fulfilling life, through attaining self-care. When the necessary intervention is afforded to the victims of the disorder from early in their life, then, they can be assisted to develop communication and social skills, which goes along way is helping them easily associate with the rest of the society. There is no known cure for this disorder. However, there have been noted some cases where children suffering from this disorder have recovered and tended to live a normal life (Augustine, 12). Nevertheless, many of the children even after attaining adulthood still live a dependent life. There has been many explanations and theories developed regarding the causes of Autism. While on one hand it is associated with genetic makeup, it has also been associated with the infection of the brain with heavy metals. The earlier theories proposed that 90% of cases of Autism could be accounted for by hereditary factors (Barrett, 46). There seems to be an underrating emphasis on the role of the environmental factors in causing this disorder, and more emphasis on the genetic makeup. However, the heredity and gene factor as the cause of Autism is not clear; since it has not been established as regards, which genes are responsible for this disorder. Thus, many causes of the disorder have been associated with child immunization, though not enough evidence has been given by the studies undertaken, to this effect (Landa, 18). Autism theories, seeking its main causes are still incomplete, since the perspective held by many, that there was a single cause for this disorder has changed with time, with many studies undertaken suggesting the existence of more than one causative agents (Rogers, 127). However, there has been a shared opinion among the studies undertaken that gene factor dominates among the causes of this disorder. There have been noted some environmental factors, which are believed to accelerate this disorder. These environmental factors include some foods, diesel exhausts, solvents, infectious diseases, pesticides, illicit drugs, vaccines, as well as heavy metals (Ball, 150). However, among these factors, vaccines and heavy metals have been particularly of major concerns, owing to the stage at which the symptoms of the disorder become apparent. The associations of vaccines and heavy metals, notably mercury with Autism dsoder as causative agents have become a controversial issue. This has made parents become reluctant to have their children immunized, in that the fear that vaccines can cause such a disorder has crept in the society (Parker, 802). There has been a claim that vaccine that contains thiomersal, which is mercury based agent used, as a preservative is a contributive factor to Autism and other mental disorders (Pichichero, 1740). This preservative has been used for preserving vaccines since 1930s, to ensure that the vaccines are free from the bacterial and the fungal contaminations (Silverman, 39). More suspicion about the likelihood of the preservative causing the ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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