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While the understanding of how autism spectrum disorders impact individuals has grown, the awareness of the burden on families who care for these individuals is less established. Pixabay

Families of children with autism face high physical, mental and emotional burdens, are sometimes ridiculed and even accused of child abuse, says a new study.

For the study, published in the International Journal of Autism & Related Disabilities, researchers surveyed 25 caregivers of 16 children ages 2 to 20 with autism spectrum disorder to evaluate how their care affected their family dynamics, physical and mental health, and social functioning.


The researchers also asked about the caregivers’ worries, daily activities, family relationships and insurance.

“While the understanding of how autism spectrum disorders impact individuals has grown, the awareness of the burden on families who care for these individuals is less established,” said study’s researcher Xue Ming from the Rutgers University, US.

“Caring for loved ones with autism spectrum disorder is emotionally and physically taxing,” Ming said. The study found that emotional burnout was more likely in families with a child with low-functioning autism spectrum disorder and simultaneous conditions.

Social isolation was greater in families who reported significant emotional burnout. Families with more than one caregiver experienced less emotional burnout and social isolation, the research added. According to the researchers, families with a higher socioeconomic status tended to spend more money on medical treatments outside of their health insurance policy.

Families with an aggressive and irritable child tended to experience more social isolation and emotional burnout. Simultaneous medical and behavioural disorders were common in these children, they added.


Families of children with autism face high physical, mental and emotional burdens, are sometimes ridiculed and even accused of child abuse, says a new study. Pixabay

Nine of the 16 families in the study reported being ridiculed or accused of child abuse, which they said limited them from attending social events, visiting public places such as churches, supermarkets and restaurants, and using mass transportation.

“This suggests that communities need to improve their inclusiveness for families with children with autism spectrum disorder,” Ming said.

ALSO READ: Researchers Invent New Robotic Device To Treat Spinal Cord Injury

“The study shows there is a need to raise public awareness of the burdens faced by these families and to alert medical providers to provide them with more support,” Ming added. (IANS)


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Indian wrestler Ravi Kumar (57kg) and Deepak Punia (86kg) enjoyed fruitful outings at the Tokyo Olympic Games as they secured semifinal berths in their respective weight categories at the Makuhari Messe on Wednesday.

On the opening day of the wrestling competition, Ravi Kumar defeated Bulgaria's Georgi Vangelov 14-4 on technical superiority to reach the last-four in the men's 57kg category, while compatriot Deepak Punia overcame China's Zushen Lin 6-3 on points to advance to the semifinals.

Ravi Kumar will take on Nurislam Sanayev of Kazakhstan in the last-four, while Punia will be up against David Morris Taylor of the USA.

Earlier, Ravi Kumar had won his opening-round bout by technical superiority against Colombia's Oscar Tigreros to secure a quarterfinal spot. Competing in the Round-of-16 bout against the Colombian wrestler, the 23-year-old Ravi Kumar, who is making his Olympic debut, showed no nerves as he dominated the bout to win by technical superiority (13-2).

Ravi Kumar landed attack after attack and went 13-2 up, winning the bout by technical superiority with minutes to spare. In wrestling, building up a 10-point lead over the opponent results in a victory by technical superiority.

India's 86kg freestyle wrestler Deepak Punia showed no signs of the niggle that had forced him to pull out of the Poland Open Ranking Series in Warsaw in June, as he defeated Nigeria's Ekerekeme Agiomor on technical superiority to secure a quarterfinal berth.

He got his Olympic campaign to a fine start as he was in control from the start of the bout and hardly ever allowed his Nigerian opponent any room to maneuver his moves, finally winning with a 12-1 on technical superiority.

Punia, who had also suffered an elbow injury just before the Games, was slow at the start but came into his own as the bout progressed, inflicting takedowns at regular intervals to earn points.

The Indian wrestler eased into a 4-1 lead at the break and extended his lead comfortably in the second period.

Punia, the silver medallist from the 2019 world wrestling championships, then set up a clash with China's Lin Zushen in the quarterfinals and defeated him 6-3.

(IANS/HP)