Bringing Peace Back To The Family
Let’s address the elephant in the room. Many parents of children on the autism spectrum have concerns about safety for themselves, their other children, or those in their community. Autism and anger often go hand in hand. Anger and impulsive behavior can be a daily occurrence.
This does not mean,of course, that all children on the autism spectrum have anger issues. But many do. And when they do, it is difficult for the entire family to deal with, and scary! Some parents live with extreme fear for their own well being and for the safety of others. Dare we mention Newtown or the 2014 episode at The University of California at Santa Barbara?
As it turns out, there are several possibilities for issues of anger or violent episodes in children and adults on the autism spectrum. Neurotoxic foods such as monosodium glutamate or MSG are known to create episodes of anger. The heavy metal lead is another trigger for anger. Here are a few more…
One common reason for anger is head injury. A head injury caused by birth or any accident, large or small, can cause cranial bones to be out of balance. Many people notice personality changes in people after they have experienced a head injury.
Located behind the ears, the temporal lobes of the brain are indicated in mood instability and anger. They also affect language, speech, ability to understand words when reading and many learning disorders. Head trauma or toxic damage can often be the underlying cause of problems with the temporal lobes. When the temporal bones are imbalanced, the brain has difficulty regulating the functions of the temporal lobes. One of the best ways to balance the temporal bones is through craniosacral work.
I have been practicing craniosacral therapy for almost twenty-two years and have seen profound results over and over. It is very common for me to find that the temporal bones in children on the autism spectrum are jammed and not moving properly.
Craniosacral therapy is a very gentle, yet effective way to balance the bones in the head. The educated practitioner uses the force of the weight of a nickel in their touch, and assists the cranial bones back into balance. Once balanced, the brain is able to function normally, negative symptoms disappear, and clarity returns.
Finding a Craniosacral Practitioner Near You
The easiest way to find an educated practitioner would be from either of the two schools most commonly known for Craniosacral instruction. The one I graduated from is The Milne Institute, www.milneinstitute.com. The second school is The Upledger Institute, www.upledger.com.
A deficiency in the neurotransmitter serotonin (the brain’s messenger) can also contribute to anger and unstable moods. Heavy metal toxicity, brain inflammation, excessive stress, and intestinal imbalance are just a few of the ways we become deficient in serotonin. All these causes are common in children on the autism spectrum.
Symptoms associated with low serotonin levels in the brain are headaches of all kinds including migraines, extreme fatigue, anxiety, aggression, ADD, carbohydrate cravings (including alcohol), lack of satiety with food, chronic pain, chronic fatigue, epilepsy, hyperactivity, insomnia, an inability to fall asleep or stay asleep), muscle twitching, restless leg syndrome, low pain tolerance, obesity and other eating disorders, obsessive compulsive disorder, hyper focus, panic disorders, premenstrual symptoms, schizophrenia, seasonal affective disorder, depression, suicidal thoughts and behavior, and night terrors.
Lastly, anger is very common in people with bipolar disorder. Although I am an advocate of natural supplementation and remedies, bipolar disorder is one ailment that I have not seen respond to supplements alone. People suffering from bipolar disorder often need THE RIGHT medication to maintain balance. Along with medication, Omega 3 fatty acids in high dosages and the proper diet have been known to be beneficial for symptoms.
If your child is already taking medications or supplements, it is recommended to seek the advice of a practitioner who is educated in both. Natural supplementation is known to be just as effective as prescription medication for many psychological disorders such as depression, anxiety, and more, but much safer! Most problems arise for people when they begin pharmaceutical drugs or when they decide to instantly go off of them.
Vagus Control signaling elixir is excellent to help calm the brain and reduce feelings of anxiousness.
5HTP is a safe, effective natural supplement that helps to build serotonin in the system. 5HTP is as powerful as prescription medications for depression, behavioral and mood issues, and sleep disorders, but it is much safer! 5HTP also helps to build pain-relieving endorphins. It is sold in most health food stores and online.
For children, the dosage of 5HTP depends on their weight. Commonly, 4.5 mgs per kilogram or 2.2 pounds per day is helpful. For non-pill takers, there is a 5HTP powder available by Lifemode. Consult a practitioner educated in natural supplementation for more guidance. Note: although absorption is best on an empty stomach, I have found that a small amount of carbohydrate food such as fruit can help reduce any possible nausea.
L-tyrosine is an amino acid. It can be very helpful with depressed moods, focus, anxiety, when one needs a more flexible attitude, and is also commonly used in Germany for depression instead of Prozac. When used with 5HTP it can be essential for those with insomnia. It is best to give L-tyrosine in the morning and early afternoon. If given at night it may keep your child alert and cause trouble getting to sleep.
For some characteristics such as hyper focus with oppositional behavior, it is often most helpful to give both L-tyrosine to build dopamine along with 5HTP and St. Johns Wort to also build serotonin. The balance of both is needed. It is best taken away from food.
Omega 3 Fatty Acids
Omega 3 fatty acids protect the brain and help to rebuild damaged areas. Omega 3 fatty acids are essential for the health and functioning of the brain. Deficiency in Omega 3 fatty acids can help issues with moods such as depression, hyperactivity, lethargy, memory loss, cell energy production, they can assist the nervous system, and improve cognitive learning ability.
The neurotransmitters most affected by Omega-3 fatty acids are dopamine, which affect motivation and drive, and serotonin. This is also why Omega 3’s are significant when treating depression, anxiety, violent and aggressive behavior and even schizophrenia.
Two companies that make high quality Omega 3 fatty acids that are free of toxins are Nordic Naturals and Pharmax. Pharmax makes a liquid Omega 3 fatty acid that is in a base of oil of orange. It is sold at many health food stores and online. Dosages of 500-2000 mg per day are known to be helpful. Higher dosages may be necessary for those with extreme symptoms. Check with your practitioner.
Homeopathy is a very different concept to grasp. It is based on the Law of Similars. This law states that “a disease can be cured by a substance if that substance can cause, in a healthy person, symptoms similar to those of the disease”. The word homeopathy means similar (homeo) suffering (pathy). A “constitutional” remedy addresses the patterns of the entire individual: physical, mental, and emotional. Our family has had great success with homeopathy. To find a homeopathic doctor go to: www.homeopathicdirectory.com, or www.homeopathy-cures.com.
Note: Although 5HTP and St. Johns Wort are very helpful for most with anger and mood disorders, if anger and rage are severe, there may be an imbalance in the temporal lobes of the brain. Check with your practitioner before using St. Johns Wort or 5HTP, or muscle test before using them, as they both increase serotonin levels which can make symptoms of rage from temporal lobe imbalance even worse.
See my post Brain Scans For Autism and Other Neurological Disorders for more information on how you can learn the specifics regarding your child’s behavioral causes and needs.
If after doing the brain scan, you find that temporal lobe dysfunction is the problem, the following combination of supplements, in addition to craniosacral therapy, can be very helpful:
- Phosphotidyl serine
- Ginkgo Biloba
- Vitamin E
Before beginning any new supplement be sure to discuss it with a qualified professional.
In any case, the correct healthy diet and daily exercise are essential!
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Help your child get the optimum results in Karen’s step-by-step online program, The Autism Moms Mentor, working to improve the biological health aspects for better focus and concentration, improved sleep, calmer moods, and a lot more. Already in over 35 countries, this program offers you the natural resources I used to recover my own son. It is unique in that it walks you through not only gut healing and detoxification, but also the co-infections often left out of a recovery program. It also includes additional components such as muscle testing and emotional clearing to empower you to get the best possible outcome with support from a mom who has done it!
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