Wednesday, June 30, 2010

The Chattanooga Autism Center is open and flourishing

For most families, they look forward to summertime, but if you are a family with autism, this can be a time of dread and insanity. Routine and structure are gone; thus, bad behaviors and regression happen. Most children with autism don't have any friends, so they are bored. One can't wait until August for that short bus to run again.

This summer hasn't been too bad for us, Chattanooga and the area has more camps and programs. Plus, there is the Chattanooga Autism Center at 1000 East 3rd Street suite 100 (across from Erlanger Hospital) it is part of Team Centers and adjacent to it. They have free help for families. This summer they offered seminars in toilet training for kids over 8 years old, estate planning, hippo-therapy, and various other things. Plus, they can direct one to other programs such as "Lose the Training Wheels" which teaches older kids to ride a bike, karate, and respite help.
Here is a link to their site: Chattanooga Autism Center.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

From Voted Out of the Class to Honor Roll

alex barton

Two years ago, Alex Barton was in kindergarten, when his teacher placed him in front of the class and asked if Alex should be voted out of the class. The children voted Alex out of class. Many kids later apologized and said they felt pressured by the teacher. Alex Barton has autism. From the Palm Beach Post:

Alex Barton, now a second-grader, has made the honor roll at Jupiter Academy, where he enrolled this year.

This year is his first in a mainstream classroom setting after being voted out of his classroom as a kindergarten student.

Way to go, Alex.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Autism Rates Continue to Climb- No End in Sight

Two new studies recently released show autism rates are much higher than previously reported, roughly 1 in 100. The increase is due to a broader definition and a greater awareness in young children. Many children with other disabilities, such as Fragile X and Down Syndrome are included because autism is a set of behaviors, not a genetic condition.
Another study in the same report stated roughly 40% of those diagnosed with autism lose the diagnosis through time. This is good news for many. It isn't a situation of hopelessness and doom anymore. Some children can learn to engage, talk and interact appropriately as they age.
With more awareness, new therapies and treatments in understanding autism, the future is not so bleak. We all need to work together to bring the best resources and support for our children. Please contact me at or come to our meetings at the Chattanooga Autism Center on Thursday's at noon at 1100 East 3rd Street (right now we are in the Team Boardroom). Once a month there is an evening meeting, next one is November 2nd at 6pm.
Hope is here. Help is on the way.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Chattanooga Autism Group

Upcoming Meeting on October 5, 2009 at 6:30 PM at Team Centers, 1000 East 3rd St. Chattanooga, TN (across from Erlanger).

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Welcome to Autism Chattanooga

Autism Chatt for short.   This website is for all of us who care and love someone with autism.  Autism is a set of behaviors and one must meet 2 of the 3 criteria to get a diagnosis of autism.   They are:

  • Lack of or impaired communication skills, e.g.,not talking or echolalia.

  • Lack of or impaired social skills, e.g., doesn't play with other children.

  • Presence of  stereotypical behaviors, e.g.,  hand-flapping, toe-walking, head banging, etc..

For a better list, visit this link at Web MD.
Looking over the list, one can see there are quite a few people in the world who meet 2 of the 3 criteria. Autism has a wide spectrum from the autistic savants to the severely disabled. As they saying goes: if you know one person with autism, you only know one person with autism. The uniqueness of autism happens to be one of the greatest frustrations, too.

That is why Autism Chatt is here. We can help one another. We can share our milestones and setbacks with each other. We can help each others through that endless maze of redtape.

This is an on-line community. It is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, all year long. You don't need a babysitter or to reschedule anything to be part of Autism Chatt. All we need is you and your participation.

Thanks for reading Autism Chatt.