developmental disabilities

Obesity Linked to Autism

In a study released April 9, 2012 by Pediatrics, researchers looked at the possible link between metabolic conditions and autism.  While there were more cases of autism amongst mothers with metabolic conditions, such as diabetes, obesity, and hypertension, metabolic conditions do not cause autism. 

Ask the Developmental Doc

Dear Developmental Doc,

My son is 10 years old with a moderate form of autism. He struggles in almost all areas of development, particularly since he is non-verbal. I have recently read that there are iPad apps that help kids like mine become more aware of the world around them. He does seem to enjoy playing on the computer, but I am not well versed on the actual mechanics of the programs and am concerned that he’ll get too self-absorbed and that the whole endeavor might do more harm than good. Your thoughts?  -Marilyn P. Silverlake, CA. 

When Your Child Grows Up & Out of Special Ed
It is all well and good to be told, as a parent, you must be ready for when your child with a developmental disability is no longer in special ed full time.  Yet, to me that time crept up in 2000. When my son with autism, now 31, was out of school I thought it would all be very easy. I was optimistic, sure that a local developmental disability related nonprofit (NPO) would agree to work with him since he had been at work sites starting at 14 by his school. I was unrealistic.
Guardianship and Developmental Disabilities

Surrogate Decision Making for People with Developmental Disabilities

Girl with Down Syndrome Signed as Model

Urban Angels, an elite UK child modeling agency, opens their books only twice a year in search of new talent. Little Taya Kennedy was one of 50 children chosen out of 2,000 applicants. The fact that she has Down syndrome “did not enter the equation,” says Alysa Lewis, owner of the agency. 

Taya’s mother, Gemma Andre, told the Daily Mail that she was overjoyed when she heard the news, “not because Taya was going to be a model. More importantly, she had competed on equal terms with every other child and succeeded.”

Ice Hockey Meets Special Needs

Since it began five years ago, the Special Needs Ice Hockey program in Panorama City, California, has provided an opportunity for kids and adults with developmental disabilities to learn and play hockey. Until just six months ago, it was the only program in California to give kids with autism, intellectual disabilities and other developmental disabilities a chance to gear up, get on the ice and play hockey. They are still the only special needs ice hockey team in the state"the California Condors.