Evidence Based Practice Articles on Autism and Feeding Problems
Autism spectrum disorder is characterized by different forms of difficulties such as verbal and non-verbal communication, repetitive behaviors, and social interactions (Freedman, 2008 p.4). The condition is a learning disorder, and it depicts a development issue in the brain. Children with autism and autistic spectrum disorder find it hard to interact with other children of their age, and when in school, teachers, and other pupils consider the autistic children as “difficult”. However, autism can be managed very well. Children with autism need nursing care to bring out the best from them. According to a research conducted by Marcus Autism Center, children with autism are at risk of poor feeding and feeding disorder (Woodruff Health Sciences Center , 2013 para.1). It is notable that proper and healthy meals help children to develop mentally by socializing during meals, but autistic children do not experience that. Good nursing practice are needed to ensure that autism does not affect feeding and health of a child.
Children with Autism at Considerable Risk of Nutritional Deficits and Feeding Problems
The Department of Pediatrics at the Emory University School of Medicine and the Marcus Autism Center were the first institutions to conduct a research on the issue (Woodruff Health Sciences Center, 2013). First of all, it is not clear what causes autism. It may be genetic since the condition runs in families. Scientists have conducted several other researches to determine the brain sections that lead to the condition (Woodruff Health Sciences Center, 2013). The investigation carried out involved using all peer reviewed articles written on autism and feeding problems.
A meta-analysis of the peer reviewed articles was conducted by researchers from Emory University and Marcus Autism Center. From the research, they noted that most children diagnosed with the condition have a lower intake of calcium and protein, and also have a high number of other nutritional problems (Woodruff Health Sciences Center , 2013). Some of the feeding problems that children with autism experience include allergies for many food products. Therefore, the nurses should monitor the feeding habits of children, and ensure that the children eat food which is full of nutritional value (Woodruff Health Sciences Center, 2013). Secondly, autistic children also suffer from pica, a condition in which they eat nonfood materials, which is also a feeding and behavioral deficiency that nurses must observe and restrain.