Experts have yet to agree on a definitive cause for autism, although many believe it may be a combination of genetic and environmental factors. For many people living with the disorder, this uncertainty is a major frustration.
There are a number of theories attempting to explain the origins and recent explosion of autism. Many parents suspect that mercury preservatives in vaccines may be to blame, while others look to food allergies and environmental toxins.
Because the medical community has yet to discern the reasons behind autism, there is no single treatment or cure for the broad spectrum of symptoms exhibited by autistic patients. Medications commonly prescribed for autistic patients include stimulants typically used to treat attention deficit disorder (ADD); non-stimulants often prescribed for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD); antidepressant and anti-anxiety drugs; antipyschotics; and mood stabilizers.
Additionally, there are educational approaches to autism that may help reduce some of the challenges associated with the condition. This approach may reduce some of the challenges associated with the condition, and help children to function within the confines of the disorder.