Sensory integration in autism

October, 2010

A new study provides evidence for the theory that sensory integration is impaired in autism.

Children with autism often focus intently on a single activity or feature of their environment. A study involving 17 autistic children (6-16 years) and 17 controls has compared brain activity as they watched a silent video of their choice while tones and vibrations were presented, separately and simultaneously.

A simple stimulus takes about 20 milliseconds to arrive in the brain. When information from multiple senses registers at the same time, integration takes about 100 to 200 milliseconds in normally developing children. But those with autism took an average of 310 milliseconds to integrate the noise and vibration when they occurred together. The children with autism also showed weaker signal strength, signified by lower amplitude brainwaves.

The findings are consistent with theories that automatic sensory integration is impaired in autism, and may help explain autism’s characteristic sensitivity to excessive sensory stimulation.

Reference: 

Related News

Adding to the growing evidence for the long-term cognitive benefits of childhood music training, a new study has found that even a few years of music training in childhood has long-lasting benefits for auditory discrimination.

A large long-running New Zealand study has found that people who started using cannabis in adolescence and continued to use it for years afterward showed a significant decline in IQ from age 13 to 38. This was true even in those who hadn’t smoked marijuana for some years.

In contradiction of some other recent research, a large new study has found that offering students rewards just before standardized testing can improve test performance dramatically.

I’ve mentioned before that, for some few people, exercise doesn’t seem to have a benefit, and the benefits of exercise for fighting age-related cognitive decline may not apply to those carrying the Alzheimer’s gene.

A three-year study involving 3,034 Singaporean children and adolescents (aged 8-17) has found that those who spent more time playing video games subsequently had more attention problems, even when earlier attention problems, sex, age, race, and socioeconomic status were statistically controlled.

A review of 10 observational and four intervention studies as said to provide strong evidence for a positive relationship between physical activity and academic performance in young people (6-18).

Benefits of high quality child care persist 30 years later

Is there, or is there not, a gender gap in mathematics performance? And if there is, is it biological or cultural?

Iron deficiency is the world's single most common nutrient deficiency, and a well-known cause of impaired cognitive, language, and motor development. Many countries therefore routinely supplement infant foods with iron.

Math-anxiety can greatly lower performance on math problems, but just because you suffer from math-anxiety doesn’t mean you’re necessarily going to perform badly.

Pages

Subscribe to Latest newsSubscribe to Latest newsSubscribe to Latest health news