Monday, August 19, 2019

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  • Hi Marilyn,
    I just wanted to thank you so much for spreading awareness on this phenomenon that is happening with with our young children.
    I work in the field of early intervention serving many children with ASD diagnosis as a specialty. While working with a child over 3 years ago that had red flags for ASD the parents decided to remove screens of their own desire due to their feelings that he was more interactive when screen media was off. This child made more progress in one month at age 2.5 than I had ever seen during my time working with children this age level with this severity of symptoms, that it was just mind blowing to me. The family continued to remove screens from his view over the next several months and all symptoms of ASD resolved and he presented with only a language delay that resolved several months later.
    I was then able to replicate these same results with my own son at age 3.5 that had a diagnosis of ASD by removing screens from
    his view and again placing emphasis on social interaction. In a matter of months, he was no longer showing signs of ASD and just again like the child mentioned early exhibited only a language delay. We had him retested at 9 months after removing all screens reutilizing the ADOS test and he no longer scored for ASD.
    Both my son and this other child I speak of both had high amounts of screen media their first few years of life. Both were given huge amounts of social interaction time in replacement of the screens when they were eliminated. I do believe that there is hope for many of our young children experiencing these same symptoms or diagnosis that had the same history of high exposure in early childhood. I have yet to recommend it to a family that hasn’t seen extremely positive results very rapidly. No matter what therapy is being used…in my experiences it truly seems to make it more effective.
    My own son was going to 8 therapy services weekly with very little and slow progress. Once screens were removed, within weeks he had begun meeting goals he had been working on for months on end with little progress.
    I hope to provide awareness to providers and parents by sharing the AAP’s recommendations for screen time before two in one of the links below and the harmful nature that over exposure can cause on early development as well as the association that was found over 10 years by Dr. Michael Waldman et.al in the following link to the article, “Does Television Cause Autism.”
    I hope that by providing these resources along with your article and other’s testimonies, that more families with this high exposure and early history may learn of this free therapeutic method, that removing screens during a young child’s life that has ASD or is exhibiting signs of ASD can help them to achieve their maximum potential.
    My son was once given a diagnosis of low IQ and ASD at 3.5 years old and within 9 months scored in normal IQ range and no ASD using the same testing tools. He continues on this same tragectory now that his screen viewing is highly montored and many other social activities are in place. Thank you so much for your work to make this available so more families and children can benefit from this knowlege and method that is free to everyone. I have no doubt that true “classical autism” exists, but doubt that that rate and increase is what we are experiencing today based on my experiences and understanding of the literature.
    Lori Frome
    https://www.healthychildren.org/English/family-life/Media/Pages/Why-to-Avoid-TV-Before-Age-2.aspx
    http://www.nber.org/papers/w12632