Scientists have long suspected that inflammation may be connected to autism. What does the research like? And what are the implications of this new discovery for day-to-day life?
The “autism inflammation treatment” is a topic that has been gaining a lot of attention lately. There are many people who believe that the two are connected, and there are others who believe they are not.
Invaders surround us on a daily basis. Toxins may be found in the air we breathe, our food, and the water we drink. Even more harm may be caused by bugs, cat fangs, sharp edges, and other such items.
Inflammation is essential when danger occurs. Swelling is a natural way for our bodies to surround a problem and begin the healing process.
Inflammation during pregnancy may benefit a developing infant, but it may also increase the chance of autism. Furthermore, some persons with autism suffer from chronic inflammation as a result of their condition.
You can’t (or shouldn’t) avoid all kinds of inflammation, but sensible, common-sense precautions may help mothers safeguard their children. People with autism could benefit from similar approaches.
Does Pregnancy Inflammation Increase the Risk of Autism?
The first home of a baby is a mother’s body. During pregnancy, the substances she eats, drinks, and breathes are shared with her baby. Her immune system may sometimes teach her baby’s body in detrimental ways.
According to the National Institutes of Health, early pregnancy inflammation caused by sickness may increase the chance of autism in children. After reading a research on C-reactive protein (CRP) in pregnant women, they arrived to this conclusion. When there is inflammation all across the body, this element increases. Its presence increased the likelihood of autism by 43 percent in one research.
Your body may react in the following ways:
- Infections caused by viruses. A cold or the flu may generate significant immune system responses, some of which cause full-body inflammation.
- Infections caused by bacteria. Inflammation may be localized or systemic in response to strep throat, food poisoning, or urinary tract infections.
Some studies believe the link is considerably stronger. Researchers found that even little quantities of inflammation in a pregnant mother may cause autism in her kid in a second trial. The greater the danger, the stronger her immune system and inflammatory reaction are. Even if she doesn’t feel unwell, this is true.
There are a lot of theories floating around concerning this link. Some studies believe that a mother’s inflammatory reaction has an influence on her baby’s brain during a critical time. Neurons are growing and connections are formed. Swelling halts these processes, leaving newborns with long-term impairments. However, further study is needed to explain why swelling is so difficult for a developing brain.
Is Autism Linked to Inflammation?
According to studies, mothers who suffer from edema have a greater probability of giving birth to autistic children. What happens once the baby is born, though? Researchers believe that children with autism are born with uncommon forms of inflammation throughout their bodies, which persists throughout their lives.
Inflammation is common in persons with autism in the following areas:
- The mind. Researchers discovered elevated amounts of an inflammatory marker in an area of the brain involved with behavior in a study of persons with autism. This might indicate that certain autistic symptoms are caused by a kind of swelling.
- The stomach. Irritable bowel illness is caused by inflammation in the stomach and intestines. IBD diagnoses are 67 percent more common in children with autism than in their counterparts.
- The lungs and sinuses are involved. Respiratory allergies affect 19% of children with autism, compared to just 12% of their contemporaries. Inhaling allergens causes prolonged, unpleasant irritation, making breathing difficult.
- The epidermis. Eczema is characterized by thick, itchy, and swollen skin. These symptoms are present in around 17% of children with autism, compared to 10% of their counterparts.
Systemic inflammation may be caused by a variety of illnesses, including allergies, but it’s not uncommon for individuals with autism to have many of them at the same time. Even if several illnesses are causing that discomfort, their whole bodies are inflamed.
What Can Expectant Mothers Do?
During pregnancy, some inflammation is to be anticipated. If you stand too long in the summer heat, for example, your toes and feet may swell. Although you can’t always avoid these symptoms, there is a lot you can do to safeguard your baby while you’re pregnant.
According to studies, infection control is crucial. When you’re pregnant, catching the flu may seem inconvenient, but it might have long-term consequences for your kid. To keep common diseases at bay, take the following precautions:
- Please wash your hands. Soak your hands with soap and vigorously massage them together. Clean with a clean cloth after rinsing with warm water.
- Keep your hands away from your face. Bacteria is picked up by your fingertips and delivered to your body through your eyes, nose, and mouth. To prevent the temptation of touching your face, keep your hands in your pockets or wear a mask.
- People who are ill should be avoided. Don’t visit a family member in the hospital or nursing your dearest buddy back to health. Keep your distance from anybody you suspect is sick.
- Keep your eyes peeled. Eat healthy, get enough sleep, minimize stress, and generally take care of your body.
Consult your doctor about your eating habits. According to research, your gut biome may impact swelling throughout your body, and taking probiotics can assist some women. Other women don’t experience the same benefits, and these supplements aren’t necessarily safe to use while pregnant. Consult your doctor to see whether they are appropriate for you.
Other inflammatory causes to avoid include:
- Smoke from cigarettes. While you’re pregnant, don’t smoke anything and stay away from others who do. Pregnant women are particularly vulnerable to secondhand smoking.
- Inactivity. Exercise stimulates the production of anti-inflammatory substances in the body. Make it a point to workout every day.
- Toxins. Pesticides, mercury, aluminum, and some types of plastic may be detrimental to you and your child.
- Stress. Stress causes the body to create substances that cause inflammation. Learn how to handle stress and integrate relaxing techniques into your daily routine.
What Can Autistic People Do?
People with autism, like mothers, should avoid inflammatory triggers. Avoid smoking, exercise, stay away from pollutants, and keep your general stress level low.
There’s much more you can do to keep your body healthy and your inflammatory response low. If you have autism, concentrate on the following:
- Shots for allergies. Hives are a symptom of severe allergic reactions, which cause a system-wide inflammatory response. Allergy injections teach your body to ignore your triggers and cease reacting to them. This might help to limit swollen bouts to a bare minimum.
- Dietary changes. A personalized diet may help some individuals with autism improve their gut health and decrease inflammation. Individuals, not groups, benefit from the finest meal arrangements. Find a method that works for you with the help of your doctor or a dietician. Any big dietary changes should be discussed with your doctor beforehand.
- Probiotics. If the bloating and gas continue, probiotics may be able to help. Before you begin using them, consult your doctor.
If you take care of your body, you may notice a reduction in swelling and alleviation.
Autism Risk is Linked to Prenatal Inflammation (January 2013). The National Institutes of Health (NIH) is a federal agency that researches
Inflammation in the mother is linked to the brain function and behavior of the child (May 2018). Spectrum.
Maternal Inflammation, Dietary Omega 3, and Microbiota Could Play a Role in Autism Neuroinflammation (2016, September). Plasticity of the brain.
Autism and Inflammation: A Crucial Piece of the Puzzle (Updated on October 2019). Medical Xpress is a company that specializes in medical information.
Inflammation is linked to gut issues in autism, according to a large study. (January of this year). Spectrum.
Food, skin, and respiratory allergies are common in autistic children. (July of this year). Spectrum.
Swelling Throughout Pregnancy is a common occurrence during pregnancy. The American Pregnancy Association is a non-profit organization dedicated to improving the lives of
Inflammation in pregnant women is linked to the development of their children’s brains. (July of this year). The National Institute of Mental Health is a federal agency that studies mental illness.
According to a new study, the health of a mother’s gut is a key factor in her child’s risk of autism. (July of this year). Science Daily is a news site dedicated to science.
Medical Interventions for ASD: A Beginner’s Guide In Action: The Autism Community
Possible Nutritional and Therapeutic Strategies to Address the Interplay Between Peripheral and Central Inflammation in Autism Spectrum Disorders. (2018). Psychology’s New Frontiers.
Good Nutrition May Help Manage Symptoms of Autism Spectrum Disorder, According to Research (From January 2013) Dietitian of the Day.
The “autism caused by brain inflammation” is a theory that has been circulating for some time. There have been studies that have shown that there may be a connection between the two.
- how to reduce brain inflammation in autism
- autism and inflammation
- autism inflammation diet
- autism gut inflammation
- autism and autoimmune disorders
Janice is a Board Certified Behavior Analyst. She graduated from the University of British Columbia with a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and Special Education. She also holds a Master of Science in Applied Behaviour Analysis (ABA) from Queen’s University, Belfast. She has worked with and case managed children and youth with autism and other intellectual and/or developmental disabilities in home and residential setting since 2013.