Observing baby behaviour can tell us more about the development of autism
According to psychologist Roy Hessels of Utrecht University you can predict whether your child can develop autism based on behavior and the way a baby reacts to eye contact.
Hessels states that healthy babies respond to their name, make eye contact with their parents and can shift their attention. If a child does not, it can signal autism.
Earlier it was not possible to determine autism till the second year of life. Hessels thinks that this can be done much earlier on the basis of a measuring instrument that he developed. With this he showed adults to a screen where it seemed that there was another person opposite. With software, the psychologist could see what the subjects were watching when the other asked for attention. According to Hessels it emerged that people with autistic traits make much less eye contact.
He now wants to use this same measuring instrument in babies. Hessels is of the opinion that he can identify at a very early age if there is deviant viewing behavior. 'We may be able to prevent the disorder from developing further. But that needs further investigation. "
Lead and autism
Recently, a link has been established between the amount of lead in children's milk teeth and whether they have autism. Even the severity of autism could be shown in the volume of toxic metals in the milk teeth, say researchers.