Researchers at the University of Missouri are onto a breakthrough for autistic adolescents. As noticed from bodily responses, people sweat when stressed. And, this is what researchers have tried to decode for adolescents who are suffering from behavioral issues such as aggression. As a consequence, caregivers to these patients can now have more control.
In the study, Bradley Ferguson, examine levels of stress in his 8 subjects, who were severely autistic. He is assistant research professor at department of health psychology, radiology and the Thompson Centre for Autism and Neurodevelopmental Disorders. And, this was done at the Center for Discovery, which is a New York-based residential facility for such people.
The result of the activity was that Ferguson found increased electro-dermal activity when he used wrist and ankle monitors. It is important to understand here, that this itself is a result of sweating. Also, he noted that this was the case for 60% people before they showed behavioral issues.
Explaining it better, Ferguson states that this spike speaks of a physiological response that an individual is facing. And, it is usually that of a person in a stressful situation. Furthermore, these situations can be internal to a person or environment-based. He further stated that if such situations are made aware to caregivers in advance, intervening becomes easy. And, measures of de-escalation are possible.
Some of the methods of intervention that can be of use include providing children with toys that might mitigate the impact. Or, sometimes an outlet via games works well. At other times, the caregiver can separate the child from the trigger.
Thus, the report is particularly significant as often these adolescents are unable to communicate how they feel very effectively. But, as mentioned earlier, body responds normally to stress triggers. And, thus, this can lead to better outcomes for all involved – child as well as caregiver.