Anxiety in autism spectrum disorder

We are super excited to have an awesome guest blogger! here is his Bio!

Author Bio:- Ralph Macey has been working with an upscale psychiatric facility for quite sometime now. His work involves removing the social stigma associated with chronic mental disorders like schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, dementia, ADHD, depression, loneliness, PTSD, etc. His work focuses on the integrated interventions to improve mental health and the alternative approaches to healing.

 

Anxiety in autism spectrum disorder – 6 Effective natural remedies

Parents often feel helpless when their children have anxiety along with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Both are quite complicated medical issues and they need to be dealt with carefully. Autistic children with anxiety disorder have the same tensions and apprehensions as others. But when they get an anxiety attack, their behavior appears more like the symptoms of ASD. They resist any change in the routine. They show obsessive and ritualistic behavior and so on.

Medications can help. But are they enough to take care of these complex medical issues? Well, not necessarily. Some medications take a lot of time to start working in the body. Some medications don’t work at all. Plus, there are a lot of side effects of these medicines, which can lead to further complications. This is why people often look for natural remedies for anxiety in autism spectrum disorder.

Natural remedies or alternative treatments are an essential part of the integrated interventions in mental healthcare. Many people think that alternative treatments or natural remedies don’t go well with medication. But this is not true. Integrated interventions in mental healthcare include medication, psychotherapy, and alternative treatments. When they are used with cutting-edge technologies, the mental condition of individuals improves a lot.

6 Natural remedies to cope with anxiety in autistic people

Parents can try natural remedies even when their children are on medication or are undergoing therapies. Usually, individual therapy, group therapy, and family therapy can help to bring some positive behavioral changes in autistic people with anxiety. When parents give natural remedies along with medications and therapies to anxiety-prone autistic children, they can adopt a holistic approach for mental well-being. This is essential for the overall mental care of the child.

Here are a few natural remedies you can give when you see anxiety symptoms in autistic individuals.

1. Vitamin B supplements: These supplements help to reduce stress. The dosage depends on the stress level. If someone is too stressed out, then he has to take more vitamin B supplements. If someone is stressed out occasionally, then he has to take supplements in small quantities.

Vitamin B supplements are water-soluble. As such, they need to be replaced often. The ideal candidates for vitamin B supplements are kids, adults, and caregivers who are under tremendous stress.

For best results, request the patient to swallow this supplement.

2. Osteomatrix: It’s a calcium-magnesium supplement, which acts as a relaxing agent in the body. You can give this supplement every day at any time. There is no fixed time for taking this supplement. If your child refuses to take this supplement, then you can crush it and mix it with any food item that he eats. But make sure you ask the psychiatrist before taking such a step. This supplement helps to prevent aggressive outbursts of the patients.

3. Omega-3 fatty acids: It’s the good fat in fish oils that you can get in supplement form in the medicine stores. Omega-3 fatty acids are extremely good for brain development and its smooth function. Omega-3 fatty acids can help to moderate the repetitive behaviors of an autistic child. According to the Journal of Child and Adolescent Psychopharmacology, omega-3 fatty acids help to improve the social skills and behavior of a child with an ASD too.

4. Stress relief complex: This supplement is usually given to patients with OCD, Asperger’s Syndrome, and anxiety issues. It helps to calm the agitated mind and body with clinically tested components like beta-sitosterol, l-theanine, L-tyrosine, ashwagandha, etc. This supplement works in the body within 15 minutes and has no adverse effect when it’s taken with medicines.

5. Lecithin: This supplement helps to improve various functions of the body including the brain. Lecithin (more popularly known as Choline) is a component of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine, whose main job is to transmit messages in the nervous system and the brain. So somewhere down the line, this supplement helps to improve the brain function and nervous system.

6. Melatonin: Some autistic children with anxiety disorder suffer from sleeping problems like insomnia, restlessness, problems in falling asleep, etc. Lack of sleep can aggravate anxiety and the ASD symptoms, which shouldn’t be ignored at all.

A natural supplement known as melatonin helps autistic children to have a good sleep and reduce symptoms. However, many doctors say that melatonin should be used only when the reason behind sleep problems is autism.

When the anxiety level is very high, you may need to give more than one supplement to the autistic child. You can give one supplement in the morning and the other one at night. If you want to use only one supplement, then give the stress relief complex to your autistic child. Otherwise, you can ask a psychiatrist about the right combination of supplements.

How to know if your autistic child has anxiety

Usually, people with an anxiety disorder are always anxious and worried about others’ opinions. They are always worried about how other people will react or what they will think or feel about them. As such, they feel stressed out and worried.

Now think about the condition of autistic children with an anxiety disorder. They can’t even tell their parents that they are tense or worried. Instead, they show behavioral changes like:

  1. They throw tantrums and show temper
  2. They tend to stick to routines
  3. They scratch skin continuously or bite nails incessantly
  4. They bang their hand and hurt themselves
  5. They can’t sleep at night
  6. They try to avoid the social circle
  7. They tend to depend more on obsessions and rituals

Once you find these symptoms in your child, take him to a psychiatrist as quickly as possible. The psychiatrist can suggest various ways to cope with this new mental condition of your autistic child.

Conclusion

Undoubtedly, integrated interventions in mental healthcare have helped to treat anxiety in autism spectrum disorder to a great extent. The typical signs of anxiety in autistic individuals are irritation, aggressive behaviors, escapist attitude, suicidal tendency, etc. If your child has both autism and anxiety symptoms, then try to give integrated interventions in mental healthcare. This will help to bring a harmonious balance between the brain and the nervous system.

 

Sincerely,

Ralph Macey

 

Binge Watching

I admit I used to be one of those people who could never understand how people could binge watch a TV show. I just didn’t feel like I want to sit there for hours and watch the same show over and over… I know it would be different episodes but it still was the same list of characters etc.

We have Comcast/Xfinity in our house, and one of the channels that we watch quite a bit is.. decades TV.

Decades TV does a binge weekend each weekend… Where they run an entire show from noon on Saturday until 6 AM on Monday morning… Each and every weekend is a different show.

One particular weekend they were having a binge weekend of the Commish… I absolutely loved the show when it was on originally.

So I decided that I was going to binge watch it. Needless to say, after that, weekend I became a fan of binge watching. I know surprise surprise!

I have since binge watched a ton of different shows… On cable, Netflix, Tubi etc. etc.

I’m sure you’re wondering why am I talking about binge watching TV in a blog that is supposed to be about autism and or anxiety…

The other day I was thinking about how I couldn’t really find a show to binge watch and what I was interested in watching…. what era, drama, crime, reality or comedy etc. as I was reflecting on what I was really in the mood for, I realized in some ways binge watching TV is very similar to my life.

When I pick a show for binge watching it’s usually because it suits whatever kind of mood I am at that time.

As I’ve spoken about many times in different blogs I have GAD… General anxiety disorder.

When I’m extremely anxious and/ or having anxiety attacks.. I tend to hyperfocus on something in my life. It can be where I’m really stressing about a particular situation that I’ve either just been in, or about to go into… It can be about work, it can be about my kids… It can be about health, it can be about something that’s gonna happen a year from now or something I want to have happen.

The point is, I get myself so worked up and I sit an hyperfocus/stress/feel super anxious about this situation.

It’s not always because I want to, it’s because of my GAD.

When we are binge watching TV shows we become so hyper focused on that particular situation of a show.

I remember back in the olden days… Ha ha I’m 59 years old… When I was young soap operas were super popular. Many stay at home moms sat and watched soap operas during the day, and they became so focused on the shows that sometimes they believe that the actor or actress, were really that person in real life.

I’m by no means saying everyone who watched it believed that, but there were some.

Just like nowadays we become so connected to celebrities, pro athletes, musicians and reality TV stars… That sometimes we feel like because we see them on TV, in the movies, on social media etc. we know them personally we start focusing on their lives.

This is how I can be when I am really consumed with my GAD.. I start believing that my anxiety, my fears, my stress are real.

When I had that epiphany the other day, I suddenly realized I need to use my binge watching of shows almost as a Learning experience for me… To remember just as I can turn off the binge watching, I can get up and walk away… I need to turn off my hyper stress and refocus myself to other things in my life…

Even though I thought binge watching was silly… now I can honestly say I’m kind of glad I did it… And still do! I have learned a life lesson from it.

As always, thanks for reading my blog and have an awesome day!

Throwback: Reflect Not Deflect

I thought this was a good Throwback Thursday Blog….. I see so much hate and Bullying daily about EVERYTHING! I wish people would take time to reflect… spread kindness.. respect others OPINIONS… and look at themselves and ask are they being kind? are they being Hypocrites? people have a right to disagree, without being labeled and libeled……

 

 

Sunday night in the middle of the night my oldest son started texting me, I kept hearing Luke Combs text tone over and over. You see I have one of his ringtones attached to my son’s number. Luke is my favorite country singer and my son reminds me of him. As much as I love hearing Luke’s songs, I wasn’t happy that my son was texting over and over so late.

I grabbed my phone to see what was so important. Of course as soon as I read his texts, my heart broke. He was letting me know about the senseless murder of people at a Country Music fest, which Luke Combs actually happened to be performing at.

I thought to myself once again Hate rears it’s despicable head. I started watching the news and looking on social media, another coward had decided to shoot innocent people. I will never understand how people can be so full of hate.

I felt so helpless and full of hurt as I watched the footage. I couldn’t fall back asleep, so I laid in bed watching classic TV to try to calm down. I knew I was going to need to talk with Peyton when he woke up, about once again about how evil people can be. I feel like I am always having this discussion.

We have talked with him about bullies and people who choose to deflect their issues rather than reflect, but mass shootings aren’t easy to explain. Peyton is very sweet and gentle and doesn’t understand why people are so mean.

I really don’t have words for this latest display of hateful violence. Daily I see people attacking each other on twitter because they disagree. I started calling it slanderous bullying.

Peyton has asked me several times why people have to be so mean just because they don’t like who someone voted for. I’ve tried to explain to him that many times people take it as a personal attack against their views,rather than everyone is entitled to their own opinions. I really am on my last nerve with some of the offensive & slanderous “name tags” being put on people.

It’s a bit puzzling to me how people can sit on social media and name call, finger point and make “threats” then say they disdain bullies. This justification of anything goes because someone else said something you disagree with HAS TO STOP!

My prayer and hope is that people look inside of themselves, instead of deflect.

We can’t control what others say & do, but we can control ourselves.

If we choose to not play the game of verbal violence, maybe just maybe others will stop as well. Let’s all make a vow to tone down the rhetoric. While words are only words, they can lead to more.

I hope we can return good for evil, reflect not deflect, open our hearts and minds, disagree with respect and support causes not agendas! While this won’t stop evil, it’s a great start and we need to start somewhere because if we don’t I am not sure what will happen.

The Park Bench

I wrote this piece several years ago for my book… I read it every so often and I remind myself it will be Okay.

There are times I really do worry about what is going to happen to Peyton, after I am gone… After my husband is gone… I know he has three older siblings, and I know they love him unconditionally… But I still worry.

I worry that I’m not giving him enough in his life… There’s so many things parents of adult children with autism, worry about… We don’t always talk about them… But they are very real and in our mind, and in our thoughts and in our hearts…

When I get really stressed about it, I read this piece… And I remind myself Peyton is not alone… Rather he is surrounded in love, and I have that faith that whether I’m here or gone… That love Will stay around him.

I can only do what I can do and plan for his future.Stressing isn’t going to help…planning is.

So as we celebrate this holiday season and we come to the end of the year where we all make our New Year’s resolutions… Let’s each and everyone of us pause, and realize what is the most important… That we are there for those who need us, and we surround them with love.

I see a park bench alone, no one pays attention to it. It reminds me of my son… You see my child is autistic, he fights battles every day I can’t even imagine. As I see the park bench all alone even though there are people everywhere.. I realize how my son must feel. Connecting with others isn’t always easy for him, my heart hurts… But I also become more determined to help him. I look around me and I see the beauty of nature that surrounds the bench. It soothes me and heals me… There are so many wonderful things about nature… I am re-invigorated as I walk away from the park bench. I look back at it sitting empty, I stop and smile… As children run up to it and compete to all sit on the bench. It’s at that moment, that I suddenly realize my son will be fine… as he really isn’t alone… He has us, and we love him unconditionally.. We see his strengths.

As always, thank you so much for reading my blog and for following us on our 45 Awesomism days of the holidays. Without everyone’s support we wouldn’t be able to accomplish the things that we are. I hope you’re enjoying it and we look forward to “talking” to you again tomorrow!

have an awesome day

My hope for this Thanksgiving

I wrote this post 3 years ago, Thanksgiving… I had hoped and prayed that by now we would have healed some. I really do not think we have and I am not sure we ever will…

It seems as though it has now spilled over into all parts of daily life.

While I can’t change the behavior of others, I can change mine… so I am hoping that enough of us stand up and say… IT IS OKAY to disagree.. We do not all have to agree in fact that would be very boring! Let’s embrace our differences and pull in our disrespect… Agree to disagree and treat each other with respect…

Disagreement is healthy, when done right. Stop labeling everyone a BULLY BECAUSE THEY HAVE A DIFFERENT OPINION.

Together we are stronger!

 

 

We wish each of you a very happy Thanksgiving! This time of the year everyone asks “what are you thankful for?” and we list the usual..family, friends, health, home etc….

While these are all very important things to be thankful for …..there are Other things we should be thankful for.

We live in the greatest country in the world, where I truly believe most people care about others. At times it seems like this isn’t true, but I think the “loud ones” get the attention. No matter what you think about who won the election, what you should be thankful for is the fact we not only have the freedom to vote for who we want, but to voice what we feel. Although, I am disheartened by the slanderous and hateful rhetoric I hear from some. I have seen some say horrible and blatant untruths about people who disagree with them, this is a dangerous slope and cooler heads and HEARTS need to prevail.

I don’t want this to be a lecture on politics, but rather my thoughts on common decency. I have seen people say they aren’t welcome at family members’ homes because of who they voted for. This is very troubling and to be honest pathetic… If we as a country can’t have respectful debates, we will fail, and I for one am not willing to sit by and accept that.

So while we all celebrate Thanksgiving, let’s make a common vow that we treat one another with respect. I am not asking that we all agree, because as my dad taught me, healthy debate encourages inner reflection and expansion of views.

I hope this holiday season is that we treat one another with compassion and respect. When we try to squash the views of those who disagree with us by name calling and bullying, we in a sense are squashing their rights. As I said earlier this is a dangerous slope.

I am reminded of a George Washington’s quote ” If freedom of speech is taken away, then dumb and silent we may be led, like sheep to the slaughter” My hope for us as a nation is that we heal. So next year when we are asked what we are most thankful for I hope on everyone’s list is “That we have healed as a nation and truly show one another respect” image