ASD moms - The Autism Book by Sears? — The Bump
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ASD moms - The Autism Book by Sears?

Hi.  i came across Dr. Sears' most recent book "The Autism Book" yesterday and after a brief skim, I thought it looked quite comprehensive and good.  Have any of you read it?  At this moment, I plan to recommend it to my new clients' parents who are diving into this world of autism for the first time with very young children.  But I am looking for other opinions - from people who have read it - to see if there is something I am missing or not considering in believing that this book is a "good place to start."  If you hated it or think it is horrible, I would love to know why.  Otherwise, I am going to start singing its praises pretty soon. TIA

Re: ASD moms - The Autism Book by Sears?

  • Personally, I don't agree on a lot of his opinions on vaccines and many of the biomedical treatments that he advocates.  I browsed the book in the bookstore and decided we weren't a good fit.

    When I recommend something for a new parent to read I generally recommend something a little more neutral.   I do like the free 100 Day kit that Autism Speaks offers. 

  • " Act Now Against Autism: Give Your Child a Fighting Chance from the Start" by Jayne Lytel

    "The Out of Sync Child" and "The Out of Sync Child Has Fun:Activities for Kids with Sensory Processing Disorder" by Carol Stock Kranowitz

     and I'll add another one soon.  I'm doing homework right now.

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  • hopankahopanka
    Long-Lasting Membership 1000 Comments 250 Love Its Photogenic

    We follow the biomed interventions and firmly believe in them because they work. Can't argue with results KWIM? (Btw, our son is high functioning and before starting the regimen, he was not presenting with any visible digestive/bowel movement problems). I'm only saying this, because people will sometimes tell you that biomed is only for low functioning kids, or biomed is for someone with digestive issues etc. Not true.

    I'm sure the books Auntie and others suggested are great, so I would choose a few from their list, but also definitely include one with biomed protocol. It's so worth it to try.

  • Thanks for the replies.  This is exactly why I posted here.  

    Thanks for the book recommendations.  I will check out the ones I haven't looked at before.  And for the record, I am not running around passing out literature to every newly diagnosed family.  

    But what I am running into is people who have begun ABA and ST and OT (typically) and want more....want to know more....are overwhlemed by googling and simply want a list of their treatment options and what is available out there as treatment for children on the spectrum.  And they aren't getting it from their pediatricians.  Yes, Sears was a little heavy on the biomedical side.  But I must say he stated many times that it wasn't mainstream and that pediatricians would likely scoff at it.  And auntie, you are SO right about his crunchy agenda - I am a little crunchy myself so I fell for it! ;)  But I will also say that he didn't get into much detail on the behavior/cognitive/educational interventions/techniques.  Pretty much just said there is ABA, DIR/Floortime, OT, PT, and ST.

    But I am agreeing with these moms who want in one comprehensive list all of the up to date treatment options for autism, with which they can research more, talk with medical professionals, etc and see what route they are going to take with their child.  They are smart women who just want to know what they don't know, and I was thinking that Sears did a nice job presenting those options. I agree he is not an autism expert...but I thought the book pretty much covered all angles from which autism is currently being approached.

    How about this question - for the mom thinking about maybe considering implementing biomedical treatments - what book exists that gives an overview of this craziness (and by craziness, I am not stating opinions either way, I am just saying that this biomed world is confusing and overwhelming)?  And don't suggest a DAN! doc :)  The mom I am talking about now isn't ready to do that.  She wants to understand some of what people are trying and research and digest it in the comfort of her own home before even considering making contact with the professionals/physicians.  I find this very respectable and wish I could suggest literature instead of her getting bits and pieces from other moms in the neighborhood, you know?

    Or maybe as auntie stated, I should bow out and not worry about it as this is SOOOO out of my scope of practice (as an ST).  But when you really like and respect a family and want the best for their kid, it is hard to stop wanting to help when their inquiries go from speech and language to biomedical.  I'm not trying to push the biomed either way - which is exactly why I want a book to suggest. I know if I were in the situation - dealing with anything I wasn't educated on - I would want to know all of my options so that I could make the best decision for my family.  

    Thanks again, everyone.  I love that I can come here and ask a question like this and get honest, intelligent opinions. 

  • image susanmosley:

    How about this question - for the mom thinking about maybe considering implementing biomedical treatments - what book exists that gives an overview of this craziness

    I was strongly considering biomed interventions for DS, Children with Starving Brains by McCandless is what got me interested in finding out more.

    DS - June 2006 DD1 - November 2007 DD2 - August 2010
  • thank you. 
  • image W&J'sMommy:
    image susanmosley:

    How about this question - for the mom thinking about maybe considering implementing biomedical treatments - what book exists that gives an overview of this craziness

    I was strongly considering biomed interventions for DS, Children with Starving Brains by McCandless is what got me interested in finding out more.

    This is a great book, I agree.

    But, before doing biomed - they do need to set up an appt with a reputable DAN! - I'm sorry, there's no way around it. You need a doc to help you with tests, treatments, diet, supplements - things that need to be specific for that particular child's needs. You can't really play witch doctor and just put the kid on the diet - you never know what nutrients you'll be depleting him/her off by removing dairy/gluten from the diet and substituting with whatever you can find at the grocery store, KWIM? You may do more harm than good. I agree - starting with a book is great to get your feet wet, but beyond that, it needs to be supervised and lead by a professional.

    I also have a Kid-friendly Autism Cookbook by Pamela Compart that explains the basics in the first few chapters....I know, you'd probably say: getting biomed info from a cookbook?? Well, the author is a professional and knows what she's talking about - she just condensed the otherwise lengthy and complicated biomed protocol into a few "reader's digest" chapters, which may be easier to read for an otherwise overwhelmed family that probably is already getting a ton of recommendations for books. I remember when I started, everybody and their mother was suggesting books - I was ready to scream - who has time/energy for hundreds of pages during such a stressful time when your kid is newly diagnosed? Like I said, it's not as detailed and comprehensive as the book that PP suggested by any means (which is a very good book, btw), but at least it gives you an outline...maybe they can borrow it from their local library and see if biomed (or at least the diet + supps) is something they want to try?

    Btw, we do a lot of standard therapy as well. We also don't do the drastic biomed methods (like chelation) - as my child doesn't need it. Never did I imply we were doing biomed only - I've shared a lot of info on this board about the many conventional treatments that we're doing, too (including ABA in the past, ST, OT...). I believe the power resides in the united forces. We're attacking this disorder from many different angles and that's why we're seeing so much progress. Biomed is a very important part of it, though - and that's why I advocate for it, because I see negative set-backs, if/when we do happen to slip up. When we correct it, it shows positive results. That's what gives me the confidence that it's right for us.

    Auntie and I agree to disagree on the stats (how many percent of kids benefit from the biomed-stats), I believe it's much higher and it was also presented that way at the last conference I attended, but I very much respect her wealth of knowledge on autism in general. She's been doing this for quite some years now. You should definitely consider looking at the sources she suggested to you.


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