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Autism Health and Wellness Vol. 2 Issue 3 Summer 2010

Autism Health and Wellness Magazine In This Issue: • Dolphin Therapy • Financial Planning • First Ever Kosher Gluten-Free Directory • Fun & Effective Therapies

And much more….

Children whose language issues lie at the intersection of acquiring skills and long-term memory can respond to periodic, emotionally intense lessons.


Dr. Janet Flowers, founder of The JF2 Dolphin Project, has experience working with many disabilities including: Developmental Apraxia, Language Delays, Communication Disorders, Learning Disabilities, Attention Disorders, Hearing Impairments, Down Syndrome, Autism, and Speech. Established in 1997, Dr. Janet Flowers Institute was created to help children overcome obstacles through motivation. SERVICES:

Dr. Janet Flowers

Florida State University, M.S. University of West Florida, D. Ed. ASHA Member / CCC/SLP Kaufman Certified Beckman Certified Florida Certified

• Communication, Language, and Speech Therapy Research sessions involving “pathways through the amygdala” at Gulf World Marine Park with children from 3-13 years of age with signif icant communication delays or disorders • Intervention Therapy The specif ic skill chosen for therapy is usually one in which the child has had particular diff iculty acquiring in his/her long term therapy

W W W. D R JA N E T F L OW ER S . CO M • C A LL 850 - 217 - 0099 f ort walton be ac h , f l or ida panama c it y beac h, f l or ida INTER NATIONAL CONSULTATION ALSO AVAILABLE

in this issue FEATURE: An Emotional Pathway to Learning Page 5 Great benefits of Dolphin Therapy Fitting Fitness Into an ASD Household Page 8 Getting exercise in for kids with autism. Can Diet Changes Help? Page 10 Diet and autism treatment. FEATURE: Special Needs Financial Planning Pages 13 & 15 Advice from the experts. The Clown Who Helps Kids Express Themselves Page 17 Story of a fun therapy with results! Preventing Autism at Birth Page 29 Vitamin C chelation - Part 1 of 2 Vital Stim Therapy Page 33 Revolutionary FDA approved therapy for swallowing disorders. Surfers for Autism Page 34 Wellness Through Chiropractic Care Page 38 Summer Camp Safety Page 39 Founding of a Community Oriented Business Page 40

Directory of Businesses that Support Autism Information Page 43 Autism Health and Wellness Vol. 2 Issue 3 • Summer 2010 •

Combating Autism: 6 Successful Steps for Dietary Intervention Page 6 How to get kids to follow the regimens of an autism treatment diet. Neurofeedback: A Powerful Tool in the Treatment of Autism Page 9 Exploring this advanced treatment. Toys That Teach Communication Page 12 A new toy that helps build life skills. Creative Art Therapies in the Treatment of Autism Page 16 Art therapy exercises and suggestions. Healing Autism Through Better Documentation Page 27 Couple finds a better way to share info with therapists. Back to School GF/CF Lunches Page 32 Tips for GF/CF school lunches. FEATURE: Candidates for Special Needs Page 35 Candidates who are taking advocacy to a new level & advice to parents. Compounding Q&A Page 41 What is pharmaceutical compounding?

Special Kosher Gluten Free Directory Pages 22-23 Page 1






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A MESSAGE TO READERS Autism Health and Wellness is a unique magazine, designed to explore healthy living, innovative dietary research and to provide families of special needs children with the latest in up to date information on everything from wellness breakthroughs, advocacy and even home budgeting tips. In short, we provide needed information to parents and to caregivers in a uniquely comprehensive and necessary way. We thank our advertisers for their critical role in this process.

SUPPORT OUR SUPPORTERS Dear Readers, Please support our supporters, those who play the truly vital role in providing you with all of the necessary information contained in this magazine. Please take a moment to review our excellent advertisers throughout this magazine and please buy from them. It is they who bring you the cutting edge and information packed Autism Health and Wellness Magazine. Thank you very much, Yomin Postelnik Publisher Autism Health and Wellness To subscribe to Autism Health and Wellness please call (954) 353-1898 or email for rates and information. Our Advertisers Are Crucial in Our Effort to Provide You With Needed Information. For more information or to become an advertiser please call (954) 353-1898 or email Vist us at

To Join Our Team of Staff Please Call (954) 353-1898 or Email Read our special candidates guide and Dolphin Therapy articles in this issue. Autism Health and Wellness Vol. 2 Issue 3 • Summer 2010 •

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Verbal Behavior Promised Land Therapy is a leading therapy/ training/ networking practice providing Verbal Behavior/ Communication Training to persons with speech and language disorders, Autism, Apraxia, ADHD and related disorders. We are among the first to utilize an integrated Verbal Behavior and Errorless Learning approach. This is a highly successful method for teaching language and functional communication to children with language and speech disorders. Many children and adults have come to us with little or no communication skills, often after months or years of traditional therapy, and have made significant gains within the first month.

The Verbal Behavior Program Based upon the results of the comprehensive Assessment, an individualized communication training program is developed. The program generally consists of specific teaching protocols in 5 to 10 areas in which the child is disordered. Each teaching protocol consists of specific teaching and data collection methods. All Instructors/ Therapists involved in the communication training program are thoroughly trained in implementing each protocol correctly.

Verbal Behavior Assessment All children referred for communication training receive a complete Assessment of their existing communication skills. In addition many other skills related to cooperation, learning, and play are assessed. Writing, dressing, eating, grooming, gross and fine motor skills may also be assessed. The results of this Assessment form the basis for the child’s individualized program

Data Based Decision Making We use empirical data to guide our treatment decisions. Daily progress data are collected on each skill targeted for intervention. We use this data to ensure that we are continually making progress on each goal.

Promised Land Therapy provides Speech Therapy, Occupational Therapy, Tutoring and

Intensive Verbal Behavior Programs in the South Miami-Dade area.

Now! School for Autism/ Down Syndrome and other Developmental Disabilities! At Promised Land Therapy we believe that each individual has a “promised land” available to him or her. Some of us need more assistance than others in reaching that “promise.” It is our goal at PLC to assist children and families in reaching that "Promised Land" in any way that we can. This is usually done through evaluation and therapy as well as training family and others to help with carryover and home programs. PROMISED LAND THERAPY

“Boost language with new opportunities and experiences”  Verbal Behavior Program runs 10 to 20 hours per week inside summer camp hours  Full or Part time program. Aftercare CDS Providers  Recommended for children with apraxia, autism, down syndrome, and other related disorders. Arts and Crafts  Swimming  Cooking  Music Field Trips  Reading  Computers 22840 Old Dixie Hwy- Goulds, Fl 33170

An Emotional Pathway to Learning Dr. Janet Flowers and her team have over a decade of work exploring the emotional pathway to long term memory for exceptional children. The neural routes underlying the formation of memories about emotional experiences have been traced in the past decade. This work, although new, is quite a rewarding area of research because it begins to explain the relationship between emotion and memory. In simplest terms, emotional experiences can be linked to long term and working memory. Thus, by providing an emotionally arousing experience (i.e. interaction with water, a marine mammal or bird) is paired with teaching a specific communication/language skill, the child is potentially storing skills learned not only through traditional pathways (hypocampal), but also through the emotional center of the brain (amygdala).

yes/no response of any kind. The doctor was concerned that during an upcoming surgery (pre- and post care), it was imperative for Davey to be able to consistently respond and answer yes and no questions ("Does it hurt here? here?"). During his two weeks of therapy, by initially placing Davey on a voice output rocking switch plate, Davey acquired a consistent yes and no response. This skill was then transfered to a head shake and nod which Davey took back home so that heart surgery could be completed with communication skills in place that he had not possessed prior to therapy. Davey also said his first word during the second week of therapy: "guck" for duck while pointing to the new baby ducklings presented by Dr. Flowers.

Dr. Flowers and her team use an intense emotional stimuli to engage an emotional memory pathway in the brain (amygdala). This pathway is quite fast and bypasses the "screening" that occurs to an "experience" before it is normally placed into long term memory. In practice, a specific communication skill chosen for a child is identified to be part of an activity. Dr. Flowers and her team teach these individualized skills for each child while providing an emotionally arousing experience (i.e. interaction with a marine mammal, water, birds etc.). The kind of emotional stimulus is selected based on each individual child's needs, level of functioning and sensory capacity.

Another example involves a 5 year old child with Down Syndrome. Communicatively, "Rosey" was using single word signs and single words verbally to request actions and objects. Parents and therapists back home had been unable to get Rosey to combine 2 words or signs. By providing an emotionally intense interaction with a marine mammal, Dr. Flowers was able to elicit two-word combinations both verbally and nonverbally to request actions from the marine mammal ("feed Ivan" to request that she get to feed; "more Ivan" to request more interaction; "more in" to request getting in the water). Through this 2 weeks of intensive intervention therapy, parents and therapists were able to then elicit two words combinations when Rosey returned home. When Rosey returned one year later, she had maintained and expanded her ability to combine 2 or more words to communicate her wants and needs with the support of her long term therapist.

The specific skill chosen for therapy is usually one in which the child has had particular difficultly acquiring in his/her traditional ongoing weekly or daily therapies. As an example, a non-verbal three year old boy with a severe heart condition was referred to Dr. Flowers by his cardiac physician. The purpose of therapy was to gain a consistent yes/no response from "Davey". Upon arrival to Dr. Flowers Institute, Davey did not have a

Autism Health and Wellness Vol. 2 Issue 3 • Summer 2010 •

As each child above returned to therapy once per year, stimuli intensity was, and should be expanded. Just as the intensity of the emotional experience can fade with frequency and experience; this technique has limits within the context of communication/language therapy for children. Dr. Flowers technique should be implemented as a complement to existing therapies, not as a replacement for daily/weekly therapies. This technique is intended to provide a bridge to overcome a hurdle in communication/language skills. The long term communication/language therapist should be the professional, along with the parents, in determining the appropriate intervention use of this effective instructional tool as part of an overall long term plan.

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Beckman certified and a member of the American Speech Hearing Language Association. Websites can be viewed at,; her Facebook page is newly up and can be found under Dr. Janet Flowers Institute, and she can be reached at

Combating Autism: 6 Tips for Successful Dietary Intervention By Nadine G. Gilder Peanut butter and jelly, cookies and milk, hot dogs and hamburgers, autism and diet: Some things just go together! Does this technique work for all children? No, for individual reasons as diverse as the children and situations presented. This puts Dr. Flowers and her team in an information gathering mode prior to ever scheduling a child for therapy at the Institute. Only about 70% of the children presented are accepted as therapy candidates, based on the Institute's review of each child's IEP, pertinent medical information, as well as school reports and records. This extensive review of each child's goals and objectives assures that children be accepted only if Dr. Flowers and her team deem a child as a good candidate for achieving results utilizing their unique method of therapy. There is much more work to be accomplished in this new, rewarding and promising area of an emotional pathway to long term memory. For those at the Dr. Janet Flowers Institute, the results have been an "intense emotional experience" for the team that continues to drive their efforts.

As the parent of a child on the Autistic Spectrum, it is inevitable that at some point you will be made aware of the idea that Autism is related to diet and that diet can play a powerful role in your child’s progress. Picky eater, diarrhea, constipation, reflux and eczema…sound familiar? Add to that limited language, inappropriate social behaviors, sensory integration issues and to top it all off, the inability to either fall asleep or stay asleep. These are just some of the issues parents report when describing their children. And as any parent will tell you, the sleep issue becomes a shared one. It all sounds pretty bleak and it would be if research didn’t show us time again that dietary intervention can greatly reduce and in many cases eliminate these issues and so many more. Parent’s testimonials confirm this. Yet, it still amazes me that so many parents are reluctant to try this non-invasive approach to help their children. Let me reassure you that the fears you have about making dietary changes are disproportionate to what you are dealing with right now. Through my counseling service, Autism Educational Services (, I have worked for the past 13 years teaching parents about the importance of and how to implement dietary intervention for their autistic children and the results have been astounding. It’s never easy to embrace change, and this is especially true for children whose entire survival appears to be rooted in the safety of routines.

Dr. Janet Flowers has a Bachelors and Masters of Science from the Department of Speech and Language/Communication Disorders of Florida State University and a Doctorate in Education from the University of West Florida. Janet has a decade of public school experience as a speech pathologist and a decade of experience as a researcher in private practice. Dr. Flowers is Kaufman certified,

Autism Health and Wellness Vol. 2 Issue 3 • Summer 2010 •

As the parent of a just-turned twenty-year old autistic son who has been on a gluten-, casein- and soy-free diet for the past fourteen years, I’d like to pass along some practical, yet valuable, advice and tips for achieving success through dietary intervention.

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First and foremost, take a deep breath and RELAX. Remember that improving health is not an event but a process that evolves over time. Remind yourself of this during those times that you may feel like giving up.


Because there are so many diets that have proven to be effective for our kids, it can be confusing knowing where to start. Unless you know for certain that one diet is going to be more effective for your child than any other, I recommend beginning with a gluten-free, casein-free and soy-free diet. This dietary approach is the cornerstone of dietary intervention and will yield the quickest and most noticeable improvements.


Read all that you can about the GF, CF, SF diet. I have always made the analogy that implementing dietary intervention is like fighting a war. First, learn all you can about the enemy: Autism. Next, research the most powerful strategies proven effective for annihilating the enemy, namely: Dietary Intervention. Finally, gather the weapons you will need to wage the war: Healthy GF, CF, SF foods. Now you are ready to do battle.


Be strict about the diet. This diet needs to be done one hundred percent correctly one hundred percent of the time. A little bit will hurt. Your are your child’s best advocate, so alert everyone you know, that has contact with your child, that he/she is not permitted to be given any food unless it is sent along from home. Bring food along with you when you are out and about and always make sure there is a “safe stash” at school and anywhere else your child frequents.


Keep a diary. You can either buy a journal or create one electronically but the important thing is that you keep an on-going record of your child’s progress. Everyday write down what your child eats, noted behavioral changes, improvements in bowel function, improvements in cognition and anything else that seems important. Don’t rely on memory to help you figure out what has caused your child’s latest regression. Detailed observation can help you determine which foods you need to avoid and most importantly, will provide you with a permanent record of your child’s amazing gains in health and happiness.

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Join a support group. Networking with other parents can be a great stress buster and can yield some amazing advice and support in addition to some great recipes and a whole lot of laughs. Visit to see if there’s a chapter near you and if not, start your own. It’s worth the effort.

Finally, diet is not your child’s whole life, just a part of it. Done correctly, it can greatly improve your child’s overall health and the quality of your entire families life. Most importantly, it has the power to provide you with many opportunities to marvel at the joy your child will begin to experience as he/she begins to feel better. Nadine G. Gilder, CHC is the founder of Autism Educational Services, a counseling service that teaches parents how to implement dietary intervention to help their children. She has successfully worked with hundreds of parents across the country, is a recognized Defeat Autism Now! Nutritional Counselor and a Certified Health Coach. Go to to register for a free initial consultation and/or to receive free, healthy and tasty GFCFSF recipes.

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Fitting Fitness into the ASD Household By Eric Chessen We all know that fitness and an active lifestyle are the key components of preventative health care. Knowing and doing, however, can be a Grand Canyon leap apart. Fitness is obviously beneficial for the young autism population; there are stacks of great published research to back that statement up. The reality is that fitness is often misunderstood and can also be far too exclusive or limiting. Fitness programs for young people with autism need to consider several important factors to be successful both in the short- and long-term.

that physical fitness activities are appropriate, reinforcing, and provide variety. Consideration 3: The Five Fundamental Movement Patterns How can parents, educators, therapists, and others involved with the young autism population create a fun, successful, and appropriate fitness program? I use the Five Fundamental Movement Patterns as a starting point: -

Consideration 1: Sports Do Not = Fitness. -

Pushing: Movement away from the body (medicine ball throws, pushups) Pulling: Movement towards the body (climbing variations, exercise band pulls) Bending/Squatting: Lowering the knees towards the floor and returning to a standing position (Squatting variations, picking up weighted objects off the floor, jumping, bear walks, frog hops) Rotation: Movement around the body (Twisting ball throws, pivoting steps or jumps) Locomotion: Movement from point A to Point B (Short runs, hopping, animal walks)

I have dedicated many hours of my speaking and writing time to debunking this myth. Without getting too in-depth, we have far to narrow a focus on sports as the epitome of fitness and activity for young populations. Children and young people with autism often have difficulty with team sports because they do not have the prerequisite skills to participate, and the social interaction can be anxiety-provoking. The movement in sports is also very specific. Throwing a baseball or kicking a soccer ball does not Of course, the written word is not the best modality for generalize or carry over to life skills or other physical abilities. Sports are not the top of the pyramid; they are a branch on a tree. demonstrating exercise in detail, and there are plenty of videos on to spur your fitness The roots and trunk of that tree are general physical skills. creativity. Consideration 2: Play is Crucial When team sports took over as the “be-all, end-all” or physical activity, we lost the most important aspect of physical fitness: Play. Many young people with autism do not actively engage in imaginative or exploratory play, an essential area of optimal development. In my Autism Fitness programs, I approach the issue this way:

Consideration 4: Fitness should be an everyday event, but not a stressful one. Too much too soon equals overload and aversion. Below are the “silver bullet points” for introducing and maintaining a fun, successful exercise program in the home:

Structured teaching for chaotic use. Play is chaos. It is random, unique, and consistently evolving. It is also important to teach the skills needed for vigorous physical activities where they don not already exist. For example, jumping is a skill often used in play. If one of my athletes with autism does not yet have the physical ability to jump, he/she cannot use the skill in random, play-based situations. By teaching the skill of jumping in a structured, specific sequence, my athlete is able to first acquire the ability to jump and then use that ability in various settings (generalization).


If fitness is not fun, we would not want to do it. With children and teens on the spectrum, it is extremely important to ensure


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Begin with basic activities from the Five Foundational Movements. Progress or regress/simplify the exercises based on the current ability of the individual(s). Pair exercise with activities or situations that are already enjoyable or reinforcing. For example, five jumping jacks and then listen to a favorite song Always use behavior-specific praise. Not just “Good job, Brian!” Focus on what the athlete succeeded at: “Awesome job doing an overhead throw, Brian!” Keep verbal directions very simple. Too much explaining is confusing.

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Add “Family Exercise Time” into the home. The more opportunities for physical fitness, the faster it becomes part of a lifestyle.

Eric Chessen, M.S., YCS, Founder of Autism Fitness consults and provides workshops and lectures around the country, and recently contributed a chapter on fitness to a new book, Autism Tomorrow, which the authors are giving away for free at For more information about Eric and his programs, visit

Neurofeedback: A Powerful Tool in the Treatment of Autism By: Renee Chilcott, LMHC & Elizabeth Doyle, Ph.D., Center for Brain Training Did you know there’s a way to change the brain wave patterns associated with Autism Spectrum Disorders, bringing relief from a variety of troubling symptoms? We frequently have parents of the ASD kids treated at our center tell us they have seen more significant and remarkable changes in their kids after brain training than with any other treatment they’ve tried. And changes can often be astonishingly quick, though it takes continued practice to create long standing results.

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So, how is this accomplished? It’s achieved through the use of powerful brain enhancing technology known as neurofeedback (brain biofeedback). Studies show that neurofeedback can help both children and adults dealing with a number of issues caused by a dysregulated brain; issues like depression, anxiety, speech deficits, sensory and cognitive disturbances, anger regulation, attention span, hyperactivity, and patterns of inflexibility. How can this technology help such a broad spectrum of symptoms? Because many of the patterns, behaviors and emotions that we consider undesirable begin in the brain and brain training with neurofeedback can alter the problem at its source. Perhaps this is best demonstrated by sharing a real life story of an autistic boy visiting our center for help.

Tel: 514.439.1515 Fax: 514.371.7122

Visit us at

When he arrived, this 2 ½ year old was in the middle of an emotional meltdown. His uncontrollable crying could be heard across the building. Mom informed our clinician that her son had meltdowns several times a day and she couldn’t go out in public with him. She noted that he was involved in head banging, had delayed speech, hated to be touched, and would not make eye contact even with his father or her. He engaged in self-stimming, did not interact with other kids and despite occupational therapy and a gluten/casein free diet--he continued to decline. We had one brief, but powerful session with him that day. Mom was asked to follow up a

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week later. Immediate improvements occurred. Meltdowns were reduced, sensitivity was less, head banging diminished and although he still fussed the next time he had a treatment, he was not screaming. After just 2 more weeks of training with neurofeedback, even greater changes were noticed. The pacifier was now gone, which mom stated: "he doesn’t need it". Mom and dad also reported they could now take him out in public, meltdowns went from several times a day to only once a week, and he was beginning to make eye contact. In addition, his language skills were progressing--still delayed--but moving forward. His speech and OT therapists said they couldn’t believe their eyes. Mom was thrilled. So how does it work? In order to understand how neurofeedback can help autism, let's first talk about the autistic brain. In the autistic brain, connections between different parts of the brain aren’t being made correctly and this causes "miscommunication". This miscommunication creates delays in learning and development; sensitivity to sounds, lights, and touch; lack of eye contact or inability to correctly interpret social cues; repetitive movements or fixations. The connection problems vary from individual to individual, causing a spectrum effect. With neurofeedback we train the brain to regulate itself and to establish better connections. This then translates into positive changes in behavior. How do you regulate and re-train brain connections? By gently placing EEG electrodes on the head, we are able to read the electrical activity of different parts of the brain. By hearing beeps, the brain is rewarded for making better connections, and beeps are withheld when better connections aren’t made. The participant doesn’t have to be aware of the training, as illustrated in the case of the 2 1/2 year old client mentioned above. His brain tuned into the rhythm of the beeping even while watching his favorite "Dora the Explorer" video. Learning and re-training occurs whether we ask it to or not. Just like when children learn to tell when mom is happy or upset--no one teaches them this, they learn this by themselves. Whether it’s ADHD, developmental delays, learning problems, obsessive thinking, or some other symptom associated with ASD, brain training can help. When our brain function improves, we function better on many levels. As you can imagine, this not only improves the quality of life of the ASD individual, but also positively impacts the experience of the entire family.

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If you would like to learn more about how neurofeedback can help, visit our website at or call 561-744-7616.

Can Diet Changes Help Recover a Child with Autism? By Julie Matthews, Certified Nutrition Consultant Parents of children with autism are learning that food choices can help their sons and daughters become healthier and reach their full potential. In addition to traditional behavioral therapy and other pharmaceutical treatments, pediatricians, researchers, and nutritionists increasingly recommend that parents implement autism diets, autism-specific nutrition, and specialized supplementation. Even television's respected Dr. Oz recently said, "Some of the most promising treatments for autism come from changing the foods that the child is eating." The term “recovery” is best explained by organizations such as Autism Research Institute (founded 1967) and Generation Rescue. The word conveys the healing possibility for these children--to reach their potential of health and happiness. Actress Jenny McCarthy's analogy aptly explains, while you can’t be cured of getting hit by a bus, you can recover. Children have, and are, recovering from autism. Pursuing recovery is not about "curing" autism; it’s about believing in and taking action toward improved health and healing. Doctors now recognize that the bodies of children with autism are unique and require very specific care, including special enzymes for digestion, medical treatment for yeast infections and other common conditions found during testing, attention to digestive issues, special dietary requirements (autism diets), nutrient and fatty acid supplementation, behavioral therapy, and more. When I began researching nutrition intervention for autism 10 years ago, 1 in 166 children had the disorder; in the early 1980s it was 1 in 10,000. Current government (CDC) statistics indicate that it’s now 1 in 91. General prognoses under traditional approaches are considered grim and offer little promise of improvement for these

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children, as many believe that autism is a life-long condition. But parents are not waiting for answers from a mainstream medical system that holds an antiquated perspective of their child’s condition. The outdated model sees autism as a “mysterious” psychiatric disorder that begins and ends in the brain—and reports that little can be done to impact its effects. Through the breakthrough work of the Autism Research Institute a more appropriate “whole body disorder” (the brain is affected by the biochemistry generated in the body) perspective of autism has emerged. When seen as a whole body disorder, parents and physicians are more likely to identify the physical symptoms of autism that often get overlooked including diarrhea, constipation, bloating and GI pain, inflammation, and frequent infections. With this broader comprehension it becomes apparent that there is a great deal that can be done to address these challenges. Step one is to take charge of diet. When parents correctly implement specific autism diets, improvements in gastrointestinal problems (including diarrhea and constipation), language, learning, focus, attention, eye contact, behavior, sleep difficulties, toilet training, and skin rashes/eczema have been observed. Parents around the world are beginning to share their stories of healing. Since every child is unique, improvements will vary. It’s important to understand that these diets are customized food-focused strategies of nutritional intervention for autism. Going from not considering the impact of food intake (standard American diet) to giving specialized attention (nutrition centered diet) is the key to promoting systemic healing through autism diets. All autism diets involve the removal of problematic foods and substances, and the addition of easier to digest nutrient dense foods. Certain food substances, such as gluten (wheat) and casein (milk) are known to be problematic for many children with autism, and should be avoided – and other foods rich in healing nutrients are beneficial when added to children’s diets. Attention to these factors is intended to help balance biochemistry, affect systemic healing, and provide relief of autism symptoms. For many children with autism, nutrient deficiencies, chemicals in foods, imbalanced biochemistry, and digestive problems can play a significant role in their physical conditions. Their physiological and behavioral symptoms may stem from, or be exacerbated by, impaired digestion and GI health. Altering food

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choices positively affects these processes and helps improve symptoms. There are several diets that are used by parents, autism nutritionists and pediatricians. These diets include the Gluten-Free Casein-Free (GFCF) Diet, Specific Carbohydrate Diet (SCD), Gut and Psychology Syndrome (GAPS) Diet, Low Oxalate Diet, Body Ecology Diet, Feingold Diet and Weston A. Price dietary principles. Parents begin with simple steps: more fresh fruits, vegetables and grass-fed meats whenever possible. They read labels for ingredients and clean out their cupboards. They shop for organic foods in order to remove antibiotics, hormones, pesticides and PCBs from the dinner table. They naturally avoid pre-packaged, canned or frozen foods that contain preservative, additives, colors and artificial ingredients. They immediately decrease the amount of sugar they feed their children. The guidance of a qualified nutrition profession is always recommended. After the initial clean up steps are completed, parents embark on the implementation of an autism diet, which typically begins with removing gluten and casein—as implemented in the GFCF diet. Gluten is the protein found in wheat, rye, barley, commercial oats, kamut, and spelt. Casein is the protein found in dairy. The GFCF diet has become popular for autism and the general population, and there are many GFCF foods available in stores. Parents applying a GFCF diet cook from great recipes they find online and in autism diet friendly cookbooks. Autism Research Institute (ARI) surveyed thousands of parents and found that 69% of those applying the GFCF Diet saw improvement. For the Specific Carbohydrate Diet, 71% noted improvement. In recent autism diet research funded by Autism Speaks, 82% of parents reported “definite improvement” in their child's skills. Respected pediatrician and author of “The Autism Book,” Dr. Robert Sears says that 75% of his patients following the diet see great improvement. For the parent of a child with autism, the food that they choose to serve their children is vitally important to their healing. Autism diets are an important first step all parents should consider as they are creating a program for the improved health and well being of children. Julie Matthews is an internationally respected autism nutrition specialist and author of the award-winning book, “Nourishing Hope for Autism” and the creator of “Cooking to Heal: Autism

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Nutrition and Cooking Classes” (DVD). Julie provides diet and nutrition intervention guidance backed by scientific research and applied clinical experience. She presents at the leading autism conferences in the US and abroad. Visit

difficult, and meaningful experiences through 26 stories comparing 26 light emotions with their opposite heavy ones. From accepted/rejected to zestful/jealous, Onionhead helps us identify feelings and teaches us how to turn heavy emotions into light ones.

A Toy Tool to Teach Children How to Communicate Children relate to Onionhead. Humorous--we’re talking and Express Feelings By Christina Wallerstein, Need new ways to work on communicating and expressing feelings? Welcome to the world of Onionhead... Everyone has feelings. Some people have learned to identify and acknowledge feelings and know what to do with what they feel. These people have achieved psycho-social well-being. Even in the grips of negative emotions, they know how to handle how they are feeling. Other people allow their feelings to control their actions, often making bad situations worse. Delays in acquiring speech, lack of spoken language, inability to make eye contact, and lack of interest in peer relationships in children with autism spectrum disorders make recognizing, understanding, and handling feelings a Herculean challenge. Unable to read nonverbal and verbal ques from those around them, these children too often respond inappropriately in social situations; “repeat performances” leave parents and child frustrated, to say the least. Developing even rudimentary social skills requires consistent, focused effort. Success does not come easily. So how can we help children learn to “name and claim” their feelings and what to do with what they feel? One way is to model the responses we’d like to see, to teach by example. That alone, however, will not lead to success. We must also provide opportunities for children to explore feelings and learn healthy ways of responding. Since children with autism think in pictures, let’s begin there. Hardly know how to begin? Onionhead knows. Onionhead takes a light hearted approach to a serious subject. Believing that we need never be ashamed of how we feel, that every emotion is understandable, and that what counts is what we do with our feelings, Onionhead provides a direct way to explore emotions and reach a place of well-being rather than a place of wounds. We at Playworks are delighted to introduce Onionhead Children’s Edition A-Z Dictionary of 52 Emotions and their Stories . Accompany Onionhead on “a journey to emotional discovery.” In the dictionary Onionhead shares his own funny,

Autism Health and Wellness Vol. 2 Issue 3 • Summer 2010 •

here about a talking onion after all--nonjudgmental, and wise, Onionhead becomes a buddy, sharing what he’s learned in a way children readily understand.. Start simple. Choose one pair of feelings, and begin there. Then add on.

Let’s consider Happy/Sad. Onionhead describes Happy, a light feeling, as cheerful, joyful, pleased. Sad, its opposite heavy feeling , as gloomy, sorrowful. Onionhead demonstrates nonverbally through facial expressions and gestures--feelings as pictures-- what happy and sad mean. Then he shares a difficult experience, the death of his “fabulous dog named PiCaBoo.” Having described his feelings of “becoming a permanent frowner,” with the help of his mother he discovers that he can be Sad and miss PiCaBoo and be Happy with a new friend, his new dog Yellow. Onionhead concludes that “Feelings move and feelings change. They are not set in stone - they rearrange. A happier tomorrow is a great belief to swallow.” Onionhead opens avenues for personal adult/child exploration of basic feelings. Practice making faces and gestures that illustrate the emotions you’ve chosen. Take pictures of family members, label the emotions, and play a matching game, using either the dictionary or the portable deck of feeling cards. Tell stories of personal experiences with the emotions being explored. Onionhead Children’s A-Z Deck of 52 Feeling Cards offers 26 positive feelings cards and 26 opposite feelings cards and five games that explore creativity, communication, and conflict resolution. Onionhead believes in making friends with all our feelings - even the stinky ones. Through games children learn to “name and claim” their feelings, healthy ways of communicating emotions, and problem solving skills. One mother of three sons, including one with PDD, uses the feelings cards as a border in her sons’ rooms, showing her sons a wider range of feelings than happy and sad. Furthermore every night each family member draws two cards at random and uses those as a springboard for sharing something about the day. This ritual provides

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consistent, focused re-enforcement for emerging communication, emotional and social skill development and gives the mother insight into her son’s feelings. Other parents report success leaving the cards out for their children to explore at will. Speech and language pathologists like the way Onionhead builds pragmatic and syntactic language skills while developing emotional intelligence. Onionhead expresses his feelings verbally and non-verbally through his facial expressions and gestures, just as we all do. Children with autism spectrum disorders need engaging ways to learn to decipher these messages, and Onionhead provides many. What we do with what we feel makes all the difference in our sense of well-being. Onionhead offers this advice: peel it, deal with it, heal it. And to think an onion can teach us how.

Autism Health and Wellness Vol. 2 Issue 3 • Summer 2010 •

Your Questions About Planning For The Future: By Karen Greenberg Q - We recently attended a seminar you gave at our daughter's school. We have 3 children, ages 14, 12 and 9. Our twelve-year-old has autism. We would like to establish a special needs trust to provide for her future financial needs. The problem is that our extended family is small and dispersed throughout the United States. We are having some trouble in the selection of future successor trustees. Our non-disabled children are minors, and the only other relatives live in the Mid-West and West coast. Can you

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please advise what available options we have in selecting a trustee? A - The selection of a trustee is one of the most important decisions the parent of a disabled child must make. The trustee of a supplemental needs trust will have the responsibility of prudently investing the assets in the trust, and making responsible expenditures for the needs of the disabled beneficiary, without jeopardizing public benefits. Most trust documents give the trustee flexibility in choosing appropriate investments. In addition, the trustee's role is to use the income and/or some of the principal of the trust for the needs of the beneficiary. In most cases, the guardian of the child will request that the trustee pay for certain goods or services for the beneficiary. Thus, the guardian and the trustee must cooperate to use the assets as efficiently as possible. Very often the guardian and the trustee are the same person. While the parents are alive, they will be the guardians. Parents are the natural guardians of the minor child, but must make an application to the surrogate court to be appointed guardian when the child turns 18. The parents, who are usually the creators of the trust, may also appoint themselves as trustees while they are alive. The problem of who the guardian or trustee will be, after the parents are both gone, or in the event of incapacity of the sole parent, must be made carefully. In the case of trustee, one wants to choose a person who has good common sense and can properly handle money. The trustee does not have to be an expert in money management. The trust document should give the trustee the option of hiring a professional money manager, an accountant or a financial planner for investment advice, and a tax preparer familiar with special needs trusts.

Another option is choosing a corporate trustee, such as a bank. While much more impersonal, corporate trustees have the advantage of being professional, independent and impartial. They also will provide continuity for the lifetime of the disabled beneficiary. On the other hand, they might not accept a trust which is less than several hundred thousand dollars. In addition, they will charge an annual fee, which is usually a percentage of trust assets. A corporate trustee may be selected as a co-trustee along with an "out-oftown" relative to increase your level of confidence, in the interim period, while your other children are still too young to serve. In fact, appointing individual co-trustees is a very good idea to protect the trust from possible mismanagement. It is advisable to choose individuals from different nuclear families, such as a maternal aunt and a paternal uncle, for example, since a married couple (i.e., a maternal aunt and her husband) can unduly influence each other, and also the possibility of divorce could complicate matters. Some not-for-profit organizations have established pooled trusts, which is another option. A pooled trust is an arrangement where many small trusts are managed as one by a professional trustee. The costs is considerably less for a pooled trust, although the not-for-profit organization may require that a bequest be made in the parent's will to the not-for-profit agency, or that any money which remains in the pooled trust at your child’s passing, will be absorbed by the trust. When preparing the trust document, it is a good idea to name several successor trustees, just in case one of the trustees is unable or unwilling to serve. In addition, you can specify that the current trustee may choose a successor, if there are no other specified trustees available.

Your question addresses the concern that the relatives who will be successor trustees live a distance away. While it is preferable to have a trustee close by, in this day and age, with email, overnight mail, wire transfers, faxes and computers, people do not have to be in close proximity to keep in touch and work together.

Do you have a question about any aspect of financial planning for your child or other family member with special needs? Please direct your questions to: Karen F. Greenberg CFP® 4673 Brady Blvd Delray Beach, FL 33445 While you cannot name a person who is not an adult to act as Tel: (561) 638-6945 trustee, you can specify that your other children may be given an Fax:(561)865-3676 option of replacing an out-of-town relative as trustee when they E mail reach adulthood. I would make the suggestion that, if at all possible, you specify an appropriate age such as 25 or 30, when All questions will receive a personal reply. Karen is the presumably your other children will be more confident and mother of a 22-year old adult son with autism. She also savvy with the task of handling finances. serves as director of Prosperity Life Planning, a not-for-

Autism Health and Wellness Vol. 2 Issue 3 • Summer 2010 •

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profit organization, created to serve the planning needs of families with a disabled loved one.

If you have other children, that guardian must be willing and able to care for them as well. Scenario #2: Your child reaches the age of 18, at which time he or she is considered a legal and competent adult. Your child is now responsible for all of his or her own decisions, including financial and medical decisions. If your loved one isn’t able to understand the consequences of those decisions or needs help in making them, you’ll want to consider becoming your child’s legal guardian.

Choosing a Guardian is Critical By Ryan F. Platt, MBA, Founder of A Special Needs Plan For most parents, guardianship is the largest obstacle to beginning A Special Needs Plan™. • • •

Who is the best person to care for your loved one if you get sick or die? Is the person or family you are considering experienced in caring for an individual with special needs? Does the person fully understand the scope of this life-long commitment?

We certainly understand that this decision is very difficult for most families, due to the complexities of life on the spectrum. We have found that families who can work through and utilize a very clear ranking system of potential future caregivers for their child are able to identify and then decide who will be the most effective future caregiver for their loved one.

As a legal guardian, you can be present at all your child’s medical appointments and doctors can legally discuss your child’s care with you. You are able to protect your loved one’s money, income and assets, so that he or she won’t be taken advantage of by people who don’t have their best interests at heart. Guardianship does not have to be forever. It can be reversed at any time if you determine your child is able to comprehend and handle his or her own affairs. However, please know the reversal process can be difficult and arduous. The process of obtaining guardianship through your local court system does take time. I recommend that you start when your child is 17½ years of age. Power of Attorney If your child is more capable, you may not feel that guardianship is necessary when your loved one reaches the age of 18. But you may still want to be involved in complex decisions regarding your child’s health and money. In this case, you should consider these Power of Attorney options: Durable Power of Attorney for the money Health Care Power of Attorney for the medical

Guardianship should be considered at three different times during your child’s life. Scenario #1: Both parents die before the child reaches the age of 18. Your special needs child needs a loving person or family to care for him or her. This means someone who will continue all therapies, schooling, medical treatments and appointments … everything you do for your child today.

Autism Health and Wellness Vol. 2 Issue 3 • Summer 2010 •

Scenario #3: As you age, you can no longer care for your adult child because you become sick or disabled, or die. Your adult child needs a guardian when your own health deteriorates and you are no longer able to care for him or her. And who will care for your adult child when you pass away? Begin preparing for the important conversations with potential guardians.

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Conversations about guardianship may involve extended family members, family friends or your adult child’s siblings. It’s important to listen to everyone’s concerns. Potential guardians are probably wondering how guardianship will impact their present lives and relationships. They may be worried that they won’t be able to afford to care for your loved one and still provide for themselves and their families.

“…it is so crucial to expose autistic kids to lots of interesting things, even if they’re afraid, I was so scared to go to my aunt’s ranch when I was 15, but it was the best thing that ever happened to me.” In this second edition of her book, Ms Grandin also reports how important it is for parents and professionals to give attention to children’s strengths and identify their preferred learning style and interests, which has been a You can help ease those concerns by completing The L.I.F.E.™ dictum in graduate special education training programs Journal. This letter of intent provides the future caregiver of your since the early 1970s and a hallmark advantage loved one (their guardian) insight into your child’s behaviors, embedded in the creative arts therapies. favorite activities, and daily life. It will provide the contact information for the important professionals in your child’s life, Among the professionals who help children and their such as physicians, therapists, job coach, employer, attorney, families therapeutically, are the art, dance, music, drama special needs financial advisor, and more! Adjusting to life and poetry therapists, but because of the increase in without you will be difficult for your loved one, but at least you children diagnosed with autism there has also been an can provide the next caregiver a guide to daily life, so that your increase in using the creative arts therapies in treatment of loved one’s life activities can stay as consistent as possible. this disorder. As the president of the American Art Therapy Association, I when to Washington DC in 2008 To learn more about Guardianship, future care for your child, and spoke to staff members in the House of The LIFE Journal™, overall special needs planning or The Representatives and the Senate with the volunteer Guardian Selection Tool™ please feel free to visit presidents of the other national creative arts therapies or email Ryan directly at associations. We reported how the therapeutic arts address three major treatment goals for children with autism: language development and communication, increased sensory awareness, including a sense-of-self, and increased socialization.

The Role of the Creative Arts Therapies By Dr. Peg Dunn-Snow Autism awareness is now almost an everyday event with daily news stories and reports covering topics on new assessments, treatment interventions, and research on autism that affects 1 child out of 110, according to the most recent data from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention. Greater awareness has increased action. The increased awareness has prompted foundations to raise research money to help discover the underlining causes of the disease, universities to develop degrees specializing in the treatment and education of children with autism, and state departments of education to add autism as a new area of teacher certification. Federal, state and local funds are now earmarked to support public schools in the ability to offer special classes for these children. The film Temple Grandin, a made for television movie, recently aired on HBO. The movie was based on Grandin’s book, Thinking in Pictures: My Life with Autism, available now in bookstores. Dr. Grandin was also interviewed in the February 2010 issue of the Oprah Magazine where she is quoted as saying,

Autism Health and Wellness Vol. 2 Issue 3 • Summer 2010 •

Art by definition is another language, a universal language, globally accepted and understood by everyone. Both sensory awareness and a sense-of-self are inherent in the making of art as a child handles the art materials and creates an art object separate from the artist; while socialization with others in the safety of a therapeutic environment is the outcome of any successful art therapy session. As children participate in any art form, it brings a sense of normalcy to their lives as goals are achieved within a familiar childhood activity, especially if the activity in the sessions closely follows their current interests. Example of Art in Action: Session 1: Dani is interested in all aspects of the popular TV character Blue’s Clues. Reading of the story Blue’s Big Birthday Session 2: Dani learns to make his own Blue’s cake, complete with blue frosting.

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Session 3: After finishing the story, Blue’s Sniffly Day, Dani said, “Make soup for Blue please”, initiating the suggestion that we now make Blue’s special, home-made chicken soup. After Dani’s mother joined this art therapy session, Dani repeated “Make soup for Blue please.” When Dani’s mother volunteered to go shopping for the soup ingredients Dani wrote out a grocery list from memory. Session 4: Dani helped prepare and cook the soup. Session 5: Using picture-writing paper, Dani illustrated his story about cooking and eating two bowls of Blue’s soup. Like everyone, children with autism who can talk, will discuss the things that are of interested to them, which is why it is essential that all who work with these children follow their interests while encouraging their communication skills. For more information about the creative arts therapies: The American Art Therapy Association The American Dance Therapy Association The American Music Therapy Association American Poetry Therapy Association The National Association of Drama Therapy National Coalition of Creative Arts Therapies

Reprinted with permission from the Sun Sentinel

The Best Therapy: Clown helps children and seniors interact through poetry, music and humor. By Melissa Warren, Staff Writer DAVIE -When it comes to entertaining, Lisabeth Reynolds is just clowning around. But her act is more than a painted-on face and a rose-colored nose; her jovial therapy reaches out to non-communicative children and the elderly. Reynolds is known as Lizzie Love, the Caring Clown. As a certified poetry therapist, she uses a range of rhythmic techniques to stimulate the thoughts of children and rejuvenate the mind-set of seniors. “Working with challenged children, such as the autistic, involves creative movement and a lot of expression,” she said. Sparking imagination, Reynolds reaches to the character of each child by allowing them to create their own version of a song ending such as “Oh yeah!” in What a Wonderful World by Louie Armstrong, and then give their own distinctive bow. “I believe strongly in the body-mind connection. Make a connection,” she said. “When allowed the opportunity to express –it makes all the difference in the world.” Lizzie Love’s hot-pink floppy shoes have found themselves dancing in a chorus line with the young or one-on-one with the elderly. Her talents touch on singing, play-acting, face painting, blowing up balloons, and creating human sculptures such as flowers. “I can make these people laugh and make them happy,” Reynolds said. Working in more than 20 retirement residences, primarily with assisted living and Alzheimer’s patients in Broward and Palm Beach counties, Lizzie Love’s therapy extends to the elderly. “Everyone has a blank stare –I want to get them to connect.”

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became depressed. It was not until a visit to Orlando to see a convention of clowns that she found a sense of encouragement. “There happened to be a clown dressed like a doctor,” she said. It cheered her up because her father was a doctor. Inspired, she said, “That’s for me.” It was then that Lizzie Love was brought to life. She pursued clown certification through the University of Wisconsin and joined the World Clown Association. From behind a painted face, Reynolds sees the happiness her presence brings. I’d really like to see a network of therapeutic clowns around the country in hospitals, in rehab, and nursing homes.”’ Reynolds uses pantomime, an expressive communication by facial and body movements, for Alzheimer’s patients.

Reynolds can be reached at or 954816-1250. Sun Sentinel Community Life - Friday, February 2, 2001

“It is incredible,” she said. “They come alive-almost as though they are allowed to bring out themselves – express themselves and ham it up.” Reynolds recalled one Alzheimer patient. “He had never spoken. We did pantomime and we were saying ‘I love you.’ He spoke and everyone was amazed.” At God’s V.I.P. Senior Haven, a retirement home in Davie, Lizzie Love recently donned her rainbow-colored hair and heart-patched shirt to inspire cheer on a rainy day. “There’s no sun outside –it must all be in here. Let me see your sun shine in your eyes,” Reynolds told them. Reynolds looked into the faces of all the patients and attentively addressed each one. “Bill, sing with me.” Bill Lanphear, 86, sang Those Were The Days. He smiled at Lizzie Love and said, “That was wonderful.” It has not always been smiling clown days for Reynolds. She ran her own public relations and copywriting firm, writing for the city of Miami. But when her father died in 1995, Reynolds

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Bakery on Main New Developments – Casein Free Making the switch from Kosher OU-D to Kosher OU Parve means much more than removing a letter from a company’s packaging. For gluten free granola manufacturer Bakery On Main, it means a whole new world of possibilities. “By certifying our plant Parve, we can provide products to the orthodox Jewish community as well as to those who do not eat dairy products,” said Michael Smulders, Bakery On Main Founder and President. “Offering Kosher products under the supervision of the premier certification agency allows consumers who keep Kosher, Vegetarian, and Halal to have confidence that Bakery On Main’s products are safe for them. In addition, the OU symbol is seen as a mark of quality for the general consumer.” The Bakery On Main plant, located in East Hartford, CT, was certified Kosher in 2007. At that time, the plant was producing biscotti which contained dairy ingredients. Biscotti production ended in early 2009 and by early 2010 the plant had transitioned to Kosher OU Parve. “Converting our bakery to Parve was a great experience,” said Melissa Carducci-Brooks, Bakery On Main Operations Manager. “It was very interesting to watch our Rabbi boil, bake, and blow torch all of our equipment and utensils. I believe that converting to Parve will open up many new avenues for us.” Rabbi David Bistricer, the company’s Rabbinic Coordinator, agrees, “Parve certification allows a company to reach a far broader kosher market, not to mention those that are sensitive to allergens.” The company anticipates its conversion to Parve will aid in sales and marketing efforts, as well. “There are a lot of opportunities and no downside,” said Allan Becker, National Sales Manager for Bakery On Main.” A large percentage of people across the country look for Kosher products, many times because it indicates to them that the product is cleaner and purer.” According to Bakery On Main Marketing Associate, Sara Lefebvre, the ability to display the OU symbol on the company’s packaging and marketing materials is particularly valuable from a marketing standpoint. “When marketing a product designed for consumers with food allergies, it’s not just about convincing them your product tastes good, it’s about establishing trust that your product is safe for them to eat,” said Lefebvre. “For consumers who can’t have dairy, the OU symbol instantly tells them ‘This is a safe product’.” The Bakery On Main Story It all started in the small bakery of a natural foods market on Main Street in Glastonbury, Connecticut. Founder Michael Smulders listened to his Celiac customers complain about the taste of many of the gluten free options available to them. He thought that no one should have to suffer because of a food allergy or other special dietary need, and made it his mission to create products that were good for them but taste like they aren’t. Late in 2003, after tasting a granola recipe one of the bakers was working on, Smulders said, “these gluten free people need granola!” He walked through the store and gathered ingredients and baked the first batch that day. It took almost 2 years to find gluten free sources of all the ingredients and find a place where they could make the product without risk of cross-contamination. Three years and two bakeries later, their gluten free granola is made in a 26,000 square foot manufacturing facility with state of the art quality controls and in-house gluten testing on every batch. Located just a few miles down the road from the original bakery, the plant maintains the small bakery quality by continuing to bake in small batches. Today, all Bakery On Main products – gluten free granola, gluten free granola snack bars and Fiber Power® gluten free granola – are made in a 26,000 square foot manufacturing facility with state of the art quality controls and in-house gluten testing on every batch. The Bakery On Main plant does not use any artificial colors, GMOs, artificial flavors, or trans-fats, is certified Kosher Parve by the Orthodox Union, certified for organic production, certified for gluten free production and follows Good Manufacturing Practices to ensure consistent quality and safety of their products.

Can We Treat Autism By Finally Getting to its Source? Autism, Aspergers and PDD are brain problems. Parents and professionals spend great effort and time to help kids learn to adapt to these problems. Is being easily overstimulated a brain issue? Of course--as are speech issues, social issues, emotional outbursts, and attention issues. Therapies such as OT, speech therapy, tutors, special behavioral training, special camps – they’re all designed to help problems that start in the brain. They do help, but is there a treatment that can achieve even greater progress? The answer, is yes. At our Center we see positive, often remarkable results that parents say they haven't seen with any other treatment they've tried. We target and train the brain directly. By tuning up the brain with neurofeedback (brain biofeedback) – brain timing is improved. This in turn improves how well your child functions; from attention, to being calm, to speech, to behavior. Learn more. Visit our website (click on Autism/Aspergers). Read the research. Come to our free lectures. Talk to other parents. Find out why Neurofeedback brings results in a way, little else can. ♦ Jupiter 561.744.7616 ♦ Delray 561.206.2706

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Jacksonville Family Healing Autism Through Better could add journal entries and post comments to his journal where they had questions or suggestions. Rather than Documentation And Collaboration leading Asher in 17 different directions, the caregivers were able to collaborate with each other, resulting in a By Tim Clark single, consistent direction of treatment for him. We Tim and Nicole Clark began their journey in the autism world believe that their collaboration has been a major when their oldest son Asher was diagnosed with autism at age 2. contributor to his remarkable progress.” By quickly intervening with diet, medications, and traditional therapies, the Clark family was able to see immediate improvements in Asher’s symptoms. Shortly after beginning the interventions, Asher’s parents created an online record-keeping application that tracked his daily activities and overall treatment goals. The Clark family has recently opened up the web application at to be utilized by other families of autistic children. Asher’s initial symptoms were much like other autistic children: no language, lack of eye contact, severe tantrums, self injury, spinning and toe walking to name a few. However it wasn’t until a doctor made an official diagnosis of autism that Asher’s parents came to that reality. The doctor recommended that Asher start a gluten-free, casein-free (GFCF) diet and to introduce a few vitamins and supplements into his diet. “After the initial grief, we resolved to do whatever it would take to get Asher back from autism”, recalls Mr. Clark. “One Saturday night my wife came into the kitchen with our boys’ toy wagon. She filled it with all of the non-GFCF items from our pantry and refrigerator. We loaded the wagon into our van and took it to church the next day. We were able to give all that food to a single mom of two boys who had been in need.” “After a week on the GFCF diet, we started getting eye contact from Asher, which we had not experienced since he was a baby. We were convinced that this diet would play a big role in Asher’s healing. We began logging all of the foods that Asher ate using the online journal. In additional to having a good record of his diet, it also provided good accountability for us as parents to remain consistent in his GFCF diet.” In addition to medical interventions, Asher also participated in a variety of traditional therapies, including speech therapy, behavioral therapy, occupational therapy, infant/toddler developmental services (ITDS) and an autism Pre-K at his elementary school. At one point, Asher had 17 people working with him on his road to recovery. “We knew that it was unrealistic to have all 17 caregivers sit down at the same table and discuss Asher’s treatment plan,” admitted Mrs. Clark. “Instead, we designed the website so that each caregiver could sign in and access Asher’s journal. They

Autism Health and Wellness Vol. 2 Issue 3 • Summer 2010 •

Asher Clark The Clarks also used the website to track Asher’ behaviors, medications and toileting. Mr. Clark tells one story of how the journal helped find a trend in his son’s reaction to a new medicine. “Asher has always trouble with his bowels: either constipation or diarrhea. When we first started him on an anti-fungal medication, his bowels became normal and regular for the first time in his life. We were so excited! Around the same time, his therapists and teachers were recording in his journal about his increase in aggression and irritability. Because all of Asher’s activities were being logged in a single place, we were able to determine that although the new medicine was healing his bowels, it was causing an unacceptable increase in negative behaviors. We were able to switch to a different medicine that did not produce the negative side effects.” Mr. Clark added “We added a feature on Asher’s journal to allow us to attach files, photos and videos to journal entries. Last winter when Nicole and I were on vacation, Asher stayed home with his grandparents to continue his therapy sessions. One afternoon, we received a phone call after Asher’s ABA session because he had just broken out

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in a rash around his belly button. The ABA therapist had videotaped the session with her web cam and posted the video to Asher’s journal. We watched the video over the Internet from our vacation rental and noticed that Asher began scratching his stomach after interacting with a teddy bear. The therapist discarded that teddy bear and Asher has not had any reactions since then. Even though we were eight hours away, having his daily activities tracked in real-time allowed us to make informed decisions regarding his treatments.” Asher’s Journal is now available to the public at Asher’s Journal is a webbased record keeping application that allows parents, teachers, therapists, doctors and other caregivers the opportunity to connect and collaborate for the common goal of the patient’s health. For more information about Asher’s Journal, contact Tim Clark at (904) 713-2020 or

Tim and Nicole Clark

Journal View at

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Preventing Autism at Birth

longer had ragweed hay fever!

Personally, my wife and I have been using one or another NT CD. as I have developed and improved them, for 5 (Part 2 of 2 – Explanation of Vitamin C Treatment) years. I no longer suffer from Rheumatoid Arthritis (Peanuts), nor neuralgia (Soy), nor Hay Fever (Ragweed) Allergies & Sensitivities and overweight (wheat). My wife had a headache within a minute or less of eating any form of corn. She now eats Every child with ADD to Autism has more allergies than the corn on the cob and popcorn without a problem. At 64, average kids, and they develop more than the average amount of she lost enough weight to again wear bikinis, (and she can food and chemical sensitivities due to “Leaky Gut Syndrome”. and does). By Dr. Phil Bate

Here’s the downward spiral progression. It starts with huge stress. Stress is additive, so start with mercury (leading cause of autism today), add in a genetic tendency towards allergies, and “normal” living stress. This additive amount requires extra vitamins and amino acids just to handle the effects.

Most people continue to use the NT CD’s long after the particular problem has been solved, and I have to believe that the longer it’s used, the more allergies are solved. That’s certainly been the case for us.

However, the autistic infant or child is a very picky and difficult eater and in our culture today, malnutrition is a given for most children. Too often, the only food wanted by an autistic child is not what they need for. Fast food is not good nutrition!

For this part of the therapy, of course I recommend the Autism CD package. EEG biofeedback, or Neurofeedback (as it’s often called now) will also work, but it’s so expensive as to be prohibitive for autism with over 200 visits to a clinic required. Compare that to $147 total cost for NT.

In order to get more needed nutrition, the brain tells the gut to open up a bit and let more amino acids thru to the bloodstream. This allows longer strings of amino acids (peptides) to enter the blood. Some of these peptide strings are so long that the brain thinks that they might be dangerous bacteria, so it develops “sensitivity” to whatever caused that long string to get in. This is called “Leaky Gut Syndrome”. Since some of the first foods fed to infants are milk and bread, it’s easy to see why the GFCF (Gluten Free Casein Free) diet helps so many. The Leaky Gut Syndrome was responsible!

Digestive (gut) problems First realize that your internal body and your digestive system (gut) are completely separate, and must be so to work as designed. The gut has bacteria and toxins that are poisonous to the internal body. Compare the two systems to a doughnut. The gut is the hole, and not really a part of

Also see that these new allergies add more stress to the mix, and the spiral continues downward? Allergy testing and cure is very expensive and difficult to get correct at best. In 2000, I first proposed the theory “Raising the SMR brainwave somehow changes the brain affect from allergens”. This theory is the only viable theory today as to how EEG Biofeedback (NFB) and Neuroliminal Training (NT) work, and there are many stories that confirm this theory My favorite story concerns twin boys about 9 yrs old. The mother was concerned about using NT as the boys slept in the same room. I assured her that only good was possible, and about 2 months later she reported that the one was cured of ADHD and the other no

Autism Health and Wellness Vol. 2 Issue 3 • Summer 2010 •

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the body, but a doughnut isn’t really a doughnut without a hole. The correct gut bacteria are absolutely essential to good digestion. If you take an antibiotic, some of it goes into the gut, and kills some essential bacteria, while not affecting fungus or yeast. In a really healthy person, maybe you can re-grow that necessary bacteria colony, but probably not. Maybe, that particular area is taken over by fungus or yeast cells. The gut can’t work at normal efficiency, and not enough necessary nutrition is getting thru. Does the term “Leaky Gut Syndrome” sound familiar? Antibiotics can be good things, but they are not all good. Every time anyone takes any internal antibacterial pill or capsule, they should start an Acidophilous regime after they stop the antibiotic.

If you can get pills into an autistic child, go with at least a 50 mg B complex daily. If not, get capsules, open them up, and mix the powder into juice. You can do the same with vitamin C, and even dissolve Acidophilous into yoghurt or bottled milk. Do not use the cheap “protein” food. That’s just powdered milk and egg. Get the real mix of amino acids that has the “predigested” form. It’s more expensive, but it provides real nutrition, no matter what the condition of the gut. In my former practice, I delighted in reversing senility (a few of which had been diagnosed as Alzheimer’s) with such a diet.

The above is the first step toward sufficient nutrition to stop “Leaky Gut Syndrome”, which results in even more Here’s what I recommend: Start with 5 capsules of Acidophilous allergy stress, requiring even more good nutrition. (found in your health food store in the refrigerator). Wait for If you do all the above steps together, I guarantee that you two days, and if gas and cramps are not too bad or gone, go up will see amazing progress. I guarantee “noticeable to 10 capsules. Try to take with some milk product (got to feed improvement” just from my NT Autism CD package the troops going to war). If no serious gas or cramping occurs, within 8 weeks, or your money back. This integrated go up to 20 capsules every other day for 2- 3 times, depending therapy will make for even more progress, and make it on the color and smell as described below. This is what I possible for some behavior therapy towards normalcy to recommend for an adult, modify for a child. really work. Here’s the fun part. You have to monitor the color of the stool. It’ll start out pretty dark and odorous. As you progress, it will Phil Bate PhD is a retired Orthomolecular Psychologist get lighter and have less odor (less yeast and more good And a pioneer in many new Alternate Health therapies. bacteria). By the 5th or 6th dose, it should be yellowish brown, or Including Neuroliminal Training – an affordable alternate orange brown, and be much less odorous. to EEG Biofeedback/Neurofeedback – Lowers Allergy Stress Free Health Information at: Repeat whenever any antibiotic is taken that can get into the gut. (Shots and external don’t count.) Inadequate Nutrition This along with the mercury problem is the hardest to do correctly. There are many opinions on this, and there are beginning to be some solutions. We know that the B and C vitamins and some amino acids are needed most. I have a chemist friend who has concocted a “rub-on” sort of lotion that can provide various vitamins and amino acids, but it’s not cheap, and is still out of the reach of most autistic budgets. He has developed such a regimen for getting necessary nutrition into gastric bypass patients, and many such surgeons use his suppositories and lotions. I’ll have more information on my website if I can get him to sit down and start some web pages of his own.

Autism Health and Wellness Vol. 2 Issue 3 • Summer 2010 •

For Your Long Term Care Insurance Needs Call (786)547-3429 Long Term Care Insurance Offered Through Genworth Life Insurance Company

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About Us Westlake Academy is a unique, private, non-profit school dedicated to the education of students with specific learning challenges, special needs and developmental disabilities. We provide a year round, individualized, alternative academically based educational model of comprehensive instruction for special needs students in kindergarten through 12th grade. Recognized as an outstanding program where the student is the central focus of our proven educational process, Westlake Academy is a school where students are given the care, guidance and support needed to create their best opportunity to achieve their optimum potential intellectually, physically, and socially while reaching their academic possibilities in a safe, unique and progressive educational environment - Our ‘Vision for Learning’ Our instructional methods for learning intervention support a wide range of ESE programs. Westlake Academy focuses on higher expectations through reinforcement in learning and emphasizes motivating the student to respond. Although much of the instruction is provided using 1:1 educational and therapy settings that allow each of our students to learn effectively while permitting accommodations and modifications, the Academy also understands the importance for students to generalize and master the use and control of both their academic and social skills in the natural classroom environment. Our exclusive free standing Academy building features a combination of classrooms and therapy rooms, for individual and small group specialist services, sensory room, cafeteria area, computer laboratory / media center, and outdoor physical education areas all specially designed to meet the physical and social needs of our select group of students. Important to our families as well, is the fact that the Academy is actually one of three academic instructional levels offered by Westlake’s combined academic community over two campuses. This is unique because it provides a complete range of academic placements and the opportunity for every student to be positioned in the best learning environment for them and receive the support, challenges and encouragement needed as they grow in academic ability and personal strength. Westlake has been educating students in the South Florida Area since 1995. Fueled by family requests, Westlake expanded its educational programs to include a select group of children with special needs. Then in 2009 a decision was made - For the 2010 school year we would open a specially designed Academy campus to meet the academic, physical and social requirements of our select group of special needs students. Westlake Preparatory School & Academy’s educational philosophy is supported and strengthened by the school’s focus on seven ‘core’ beliefs that make our school an effective learning environment.

      

A Clear & Focused Mission A Safe & Orderly Environment High Expectations for Success Opportunity to Learn/Time on Task Positive Home-School Relations Frequent Monitoring of Student Progress Strong Instructional Leadership.

Back To School Lunches On The GF/CF Diet By Michele Weppner It’s back to school already. Yeah! The summer really flew by. I hope everyone had a great summer filled with lots of fun, sun, family fun and great food. Now its time for back to school lunches. What’s for lunch? That’s a question I hear from my “typical kid” all week long. However, with Nate, my autistic son, he can’t ask that question, so it’s my job to make his lunches fun and tasty. I think I’ve achieved these goals with fun ideas and I hope they work for you as well.

your son or daughter won’t eat these things but if you don’t introduce new foods you will never know if they will like them. Give it a try – good luck and have a great school year. Michele Weppner is the mother and care giver of an autistic child. She is also the President of Funds for H.O.P.E, Inc. A not for profit 501c foundation dedicated, to raising funds in order to assist low income families with autistic children to receive Alternative therapies. – Email

Like most autistic children, Nate is very sensory, involving, touching, sight, sound and smell. He loves to touch and smell his food, and then he will begin to eat. Of course the color and texture of the food is very important. Food that looks good will help ensure a successful mealtime. Make any mealtime fun, so consider foods like cherries or grape tomatoes, (minus the stems) which are rich in vitamins A, B, and C. as well as carrots, rich in vitamin A. The sound and feel of cherries and tomatoes exploding in the mouth and the carrot “popping” is a wonderful sensory experience. Other fun foods to pack are bananas, grapes, blueberries, strawberries, apples, oranges and kiwi. Make sure you remove any stems and of course delete foods that may cause an allergic reaction. Products from “Enjoy Life” are great fun. They are soy, egg, and nut free. They also package GF/CF granola bars and cookies. For sandwiches, I have found a great brand source of GF/CF breads, called KinniKinnick. They also package pastries, cookies, and muffins and are available at Greenwise or Whole Foods. Food For Life is another outstanding product and can be found at both stores. My preference for making sandwiches is Boarshead Deli Meats or Applegate products. Both are GF/CF and can be found in the deli section at Greenwise or Whole Foods. Of course mustard and mayonnaise is a “no no” so let’s experiment with other spreads such as guacamole made by Wholly All Natural Foods or hummus made by Sabra or Tribe. Again, both of these products can be found at Greenwise or Whole Foods.

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I have found using Guacamole or hummus is a great way to hide Answer Financial (not Primerica Secure) offers insurance products and services the taste of supplements or medicines. Just remember, when through its licensed affiliate Insurance Answer Center® Inc. All products may not be available in all states. making your kids lunches make it fun and easy. You may think

Autism Health and Wellness Vol. 2 Issue 3 • Summer 2010 •

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Vital Stim Therapy for Swallowing Disorders Therapies 4 Kids is now offering a therapy program that is improving the quality of life for millions of Americans suffering from swallowing disorders, also known as Dysphagia. According to data provided by the agency for health care policy and research, Dysphagia impacts 15 million Americans and there are 1 million cases reported each year.

activities in conjunction with Vital Stim, such as biting and chewing exercises that are designed to coordinate his breathing and swallowing. Conventional therapy for Dysphagia typically employs both compensatory strategy techniques and specific techniques aimed at improving the coordination and strength of the swallowing muscles. These efforts have been fairly successful.

Cleared by the Food and Drug Administration in December 2003, Vital Stim Therapy (which should not be confused, and has nothing to do, with “stem cells”) is the only therapy approved by the FDA for Dysphagia, and it has been proven effective in patients young and old.

Medical practitioners have used electrical stimulation for a very long time. When an electrical current flows through the body, it will encounter tissues which react in different ways, depending upon the type of tissue.

Electrodes are placed on the patient’s throat, delivering currents that stimulate the muscles responsible for swallowing. Diane Disibio, Speech Pathologist, has been “Vital Stim Certified” since 2006 and states that “the treatment program is a wonderful tool and a tremendous help to patients, when followed up with functional therapy.” Typical sessions last one hour and the patient is also given exercises designed to further strengthening.

In the case of Vital Stim Therapy, which is an NMES (Neuromuscular Electrical Stimulation) device, the current will cause a depolarization of the peripheral motor nerve, usually where the nerve enters the muscle. Vital Stim Therapy has shown good potential for providing significant and lasting improvement from Dysphagia. This treatment is safe, effective and cost efficient and is recommended for both children and adults.

Jeffrey Sayler is 11 years old and has been coming to Therapies 4 Kids for the past 4 years . Jeffrey was delivered via emergency C- For more information on Vital Stem Therapy, please call Therapies 4 Kids at (877) T4K-UCAN, email Section as a result of a prolapsed cord. He was without oxygen or visit for 6 minutes which resulted in seizures shortly after resuscitation. He had no gag reflex and could not cough or swallow. A GJ Tube was placed when he was 3 months old. NETWORKING EVENTS Since then, Jeffrey has developed a gag reflex and can handle his secretions with fair to good ability, although he still requires Evenings of Connecting Parents & suctioning. He was diagnosed with Epilepsy in 2003 and has Professionals taken Keppra since 2004 to control his seizures. Two swallow studies were conducted in 2000 and 2001 both of which he failed. Find Out the Latest in Technology, His mother Barbara began to explore Vital Stim in Phoenix, Arizona, during the past year or two. The program made a difference in Jeffrey’s ability to control drooling and is beginning to enable oral feeding. Since we now offer the program, she can continue the treatment during the few months she’s at Therapies 4 Kids. Jeffrey also receives other oral stimulatory

Autism Health and Wellness Vol. 2 Issue 3 • Summer 2010 •

Activism and More While Meeting Local Experts and Community Leaders Call (954) 353-1898 or e-mail for information.

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Surfers for Autism

SFA was the top fundraiser for Broward County’s 2009

By Dave Rossman

Autism Speaks Walk, and South Florida Parenting

Daniel Merens, 25, had never approached his mother Jaclyn

Magazine recently recognized SFA with the 2009 Best

before to inquire about participating in any activity. That is,

Therapeutic Extreme Sport Award. The National Kidney

until he surfed. Daniel is now one of the thousands of young

Foundation witnessed the group’s work first hand and

Floridian surfers on the autism spectrum to benefit from the

also came on board, along with The Surfrider Foundation.

work of a budding nonprofit, Surfers For Autism.

Deerfield Beach resident Robin Serafine and her 10-yearold son Charlie have been at every SFA event, and she said

“Surfing is the one thing he can do that nobody else in our

these events have provided her son with an opportunity

family can do, and that gives him such a sense of pride and

seldom available.

independence. Since he began surfing, he has blossomed in ways that I never could have imagined, and it is the only thing he asks

“Having Charlie go to the beach to surf like any typical

to do on a consistent basis,” said South Florida Regional Director

child is something I cannot describe. He is just a regular

of Autism Speaks Jaclyn Merens. Children on the spectrum are

boy hitting the beach, and there is none of the social

guided into waves by expert instructors as throngs of proud

stigma that children with autism often encounter,” said

parents and stunned beachgoers play cheerleaders for the day,

Serafine. Ryan agreed and said the events evidence

all the while getting a bit misty-eyed.

inclusion at the highest level. “One of the most amazing things is that once they are in the water, there really is no

Families are not the only attendees who are forever changed,

difference. I had parents tell me afterward that their child

and our volunteers and sponsors also walk away from our

had never communicated like that or been so receptive to

beaches with a sense of community, optimism and unity that is

touch, and there are very few dry eyes,” said Ryan.

difficult to replicate. After spending the day with us on the beach, whether you are a surfer, sponsor, volunteer, beachgoer

Sadly, the group’s mission takes on added importance in

or family member, you are a Surfer For Autism for life.

light of new developments. Prior research indicated that 1 in 150 children have Autism Spectrum Disorder, but a

“We began with a handful of socially conscious surfers and

recent study published in the journal Pediatrics suggests

initially took 40 children on the spectrum surfing, but at our

that nearly 1 in 110 children have ASD. Debates over

most recent event, we took 200 children surfing, had 250

causation and cures continue, but after being on the beach

volunteers in the water and over 1,000 people on the beach with

for a SFA event, one thing becomes abundantly clear: these

us,” said SFA President Don Ryan. While the organization is

children respond to the ocean!

growing by leaps and bounds, the mantra remains unchanged: eliminating stigma through public awareness and education and

SFA takes children of all ages and abilities surfing, and

uniting communities through volunteerism.

parents are continually amazed by what their child can accomplish when given the opportunity. “Things are said

Autism Health and Wellness Vol. 2 Issue 3 • Summer 2010 •

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often and words get thrown around quite a bit, but it is absolutely true that our events change lives and communities. There really are no words to properly convey the positivity and elation on our beaches, and you really have to experience it for

Whether you’re a conservative, a liberal or a moderate; whether you are a Republican, a Democrat, an Independent, a member of any other party or a member of none, if you care about special needs and have expertise in this area or a desire to assist those who do get involved in the legislative process.

yourself,” said Ryan. In light of the above, two judicial candidates have offered their insights into special needs. For more information about the group, visit For a firsthand look at a prior event, visit YouTube and type “Surfers for Autism” in the search box.

Candidates for Special Needs On Aug. 24th the State of Florida will hold primaries that will determine what kind of government we have going forward. Special needs advocates should look at the entire slate of candidates. Yomin Postelnik is running for Florida House of Representatives, District 91, which encompasses East Broward and South Boca (although the issues that candidates for state representative run on always affect the entire state, as they can only vote on state, and not local) matters. Aside from his business, jobs and education plans, Yomin has put special needs on the front burner. Among his plans: •

• • •

Award McKay Scholarships to be Awarded without a year waiting period, so that early treatment can save more children End classroom restraining rooms End Insurance Discrimination Fight for greater access to all competitive treatment options

Yomin explains that special needs advocacy is an area that is particularly important, due to the fact that those who are most in need of a voice are most preoccupied with the noble and special task of caring for their loved ones. Yomin decided to take the plunge and opened his campaign with the website His platform encompasses the needs of the district and what he feels are common sense solutions, but special needs advocacy is a central part of his mission.

Autism Health and Wellness Vol. 2 Issue 3 • Summer 2010 •

Judge Ed Merrigan is known to take great care in finding out the particular obstacles that individuals appearing before his court may face. He noticed that this is especially true of special needs individuals, who cannot make eye contact or respond in a ways that are considered standard in most cases. While Judge Merrigan goes the extra mile in his courtroom, he also gives this advice to special needs individuals before they testify in other courtrooms that may be less familiar with their needs. "The parents or guardians of special needs individuals should make the court and their staff aware of their special needs, not only so that those needs are understood and accommodated, to the fullest extent possible, but also so that alternative sentencing and alternative courts can be utilized when available and appropriate." Judicial candidate Jill Tamkin Rafilovich describes a similar process that she would go through in determining the competence of a special needs child in matters that involve their giving testimony: “Under Florida law a child may be declared competent as a witness if the child has minimal intelligence and the ability to accurately perceive, remember, and relate; as well as an ability to understand the importance of telling the truth. When determining whether a child with a special disability may be competent to testify, it is imperative for the judge to understand the distinctive personality traits and characteristics of the child and the disability. The court should select experts who have the ability to properly and sensitively relate to the child, and who are schooled in the appropriate psychological methods of eliciting information from the child. I will be a compassionate and contemplative judge who is sensitive and recognizes individuals with special needs. I will follow the law while ensuring that I carefully listen and properly weigh all of the evidence on a case-by-case basis.”

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Judge Carlos Rodriguez and judicial candidate Mindy Solomon have also shown a desire to improve conditions for special needs individuals, as have many others. We urge readers to stay informed and to stay active, as much good can be accomplished by so doing. There is work to be done. Autism insurance discrimination must end and testing for autism must be covered. Many kids can be mainstreamed through early detection and treatment. It’s the right thing to do and besides, it will save the system, the insurance companies and the government a substantial amount in the long run. Advocacy for special needs parents must be made less cumbersome. Red tape must be eliminated and the system made more effective. Most importantly, the education system must adhere to basic standards of treatment for special needs kids and never ostracize children who need extra encouragement or attention. If you don’t have the time or the ability to run yourself, advise a politician or a campaign that is receptive to the needs of autism and of the special needs community in your area. The difference you may offer can be profound. Autism Health and Wellness offers a forum to any candidate who has concrete ideas on special needs advocacy.

LoJack SafetyNet and Project Lifesaver: Protecting People Who Are at Risk of Wandering Wandering can be one of the most life threatening and worrisome behaviors associated with Alzheimer’s and autism. In fact, 59 percent of seniors are affected by Alzheimer’s and 92 percent of respondents in a recent online survey conducted by the National Autism Association said their autistic child was at risk of wandering. Now, there is a service that can help protect people with cognitive conditions who are at risk of wandering— and provide some much-needed peace of mind to their families and caregivers. LoJack SafetyNet is a search and rescue system that works directly with your local police departments. It enables public safety agencies ie; Police Departments the ability to track and rescue people with cognitive conditions who tend to wander, including those with Alzheimer’s, autism, autism spectrum, Developmentally Disabled, Down syndrome and dementia. The LoJack SafetyNet System consists of Personal Locator Bracelet and a Search and Rescue receivers specifically designed for public safety agencies, this Personal Locator Bracelet is worn by a client 24 hours a day. It is waterproof, you can swim and bathe with the bracelet on. It can be worn around their wrist or ankle. Lojack SafetyNet provides a database of key information about the clients to assist in search and rescue, and 24x7 emergency caregiver support . What makes this service unique is that it is directly integrated with law enforcement and its Radio Frequency-based technology enables specially trained police to pinpoint the precise location of the missing person regardless of where they have wandered – even into a densely wooded area, a body of water, a concrete structure, or a building constructed with steel. For more information, visit or call 1877-4-FIND-THEM (434-6384). Autism Health and Wellness JOIN OUR TEAM Make a difference and benefit too! BECOME AN ACCOUNT EXECUTIVE Call (954) 353-1898 or email Or call to advertise & benefit while making a difference!

Autism Health and Wellness Vol. 2 Issue 3 • Summer 2010 •

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The Friendship Circle The Friendship Circle ensures that no child goes without friendship. Our unique formula unites teen volunteers with special children in a friendship that deeply enriches both lives. Through a wide range of innovative programs and activities, the two share fun & love: Children with special needs experience the joy of friendship Teenagers become empowered as their character grows through volunteering. And Parents enjoy the regular respite they need to recharge. Together, they form a very special circle of friendship. At the heart of all of the Friendship Circle's programming is the belief that each and every individual can be a productive member of the community and benefit from the social support offered by one's peers. Friendship, acceptance and a chance to participate in socially accepted bonding opportunities are critical to achieving this type of inclusive society. The Friendship Circle aims to provide children and teenagers with special needs and their families with many of the social and recreational opportunities that are currently available to the general community. These experiences are essential building blocks for an individual to acquire confidence and self esteem and to ultimately lead a productive, normative adult lifestyle.

Our flagship program is Friends at Home, where the teens visit the child at his/her home for an hour a week of games, fun and homework help, etc. Other programs that we have are holiday programs, general programs, birthday programs and an annual family BBQ. And all programs are free of charge! We are non-denominational, so anyone in need of a friend is welcome to join! Check out our website at

Contact us at 954-396-4639 or email Recognition: The role of home design as a key element in the life of a special needs person has taken a leap forward. Residential Designer, Elaine Terner, was given a United Cerebral Palsy 2010 Community Award on June 8, 2010. Her firm, Exceptional Designs, provides customized environments for people with developmental and physical disabilities. When the design of the home accommodates the needs and behaviors of a person with disabilities, that person performs at the highest possible level in life, and is much more receptive to the educational and therapeutic interventions needed for advancing development. Elaine Terner, RESNA (Rehabilitation Engineering and Assistive Technology Society of North America) Certified Assistive Technology Professional and the mother of a 29 year old son with autism, founded Exceptional Designs, which provides environmental modifications for people with developmental and physical disabilities.

Wellness Through Chiropractic Care By Dr. Scott Herman Wellness requires you to be a proactive agent for your body. You need to treat it well and not wait until you hurt before you decide to take care of it. As we've said before health is not merely the absence of disease any more than wealth is an absence of poverty. Let’s remember health is not simply “feeling fine,” for we know that problems may progress for years without causing any symptoms whatsoever. As you know by now, heart disease for example, often develops unnoticed for many years before it strikes: in fact, the first symptom of heart disease that many people experience is a heart attack or death. Now let us be clear that we are not under the illusion that everyone who creates a wellness lifestyle will be immune from pain, sickness, and disease. There are many people who do everything right and still get sick and die. Some will argue that there are many people who do everything wrong and live long, seemingly healthy lives. However, since we have no way to predict who is who, we have to do our very best to reduce our risk and promote our health. Over the years in private practice, we have seen how neglecting their health has drained people of thousands of dollars, sometimes to the point of bankruptcy. We have seen people who have saved up and waited their entire lives to take a dream trip or to send their kids to college, whose savings and dreams were siphoned away to pay for health care expenses. We have seen people with work injuries like carpal tunnel syndrome or neck/back pain who have been unable to work, unable to drive, and even unable to sleep without pain. We have seen family members whose entire lives become dominated by the necessity to care for another family member who is sick or in pain. The effects of long-term illness or disability on a family can be devastating; in many cases, it happens to families who are already over-stressed, under-loved, and emotionally maxed out. On the other hand, We have seen people who have been unemployed due to their pain or health condition choose to adopt new healthy habits: within a short period of time they are back at work making money, taking care of themselves and their families again, and are able to put away savings for their retirement. We have heard every excuse you can imagine as to why people believe they can’t afford the time or money to invest in their health. But the truth is that you must invest in your health today, or disease may bankrupt you in every way later. If you don’t have the time and money to improve your health while you feel

Autism Health and Wellness Vol. 2 Issue 3 • Summer 2010 •

good, what makes you think you will have the time and money to improve your health once you have lost it? As Anthony Robbins once said, "you can make time for wellness now or you can make time for sickness later." The choice is yours. With regards to your wellness, the three main ideas that we really want to drive home . . . Health is not merely the absence of disease. The body has an innate intelligence that runs a series of complex systems that rely on proper balance and coordination in order to function correctly. By living a wellness lifestyle you can enrich your life with vibrant health. Arrange a special consultation with Dr. Herman by visiting or calling (954) 917-4343.


RANKED AMONG THE MOST DEDICATED FIRMS IN SOUTH FLORIDA IRPW CONSULTING, INC. (786) 547-3429 DIRECTOR@INSIDERSREVIEW.ORG CALL US TODAY FOR A FREE INITIAL CONSULTATION AND FIND OUT WHAT WE CAN DO FOR YOU IRPW Staff have written some of the most comprehensive programs for non-profits anywhere in the state, have helped raise millions in grant money for worthy organizations and have an established record as one of a kind leaders in donor events planning and Public relations

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Summer Camp Safety By Kay Green, My Precious Kid You are considering camp for your child this summer. Summer camp can build great childhood memories for your child. How do you make sure your child is safe? What steps should take to make sure your child's needs are met? Start by ASKING questions. 1. CALL THE CAMP - Asks lots of questions. Is it accredited? Do you have references from others who have attended the camp? What is their camper to cabin leader ratio? 2. MEDICAL – Does your child have any special needs? Require medication? How does the camp handle these needs for your child? Call the camp and ask in advance. 3. ID CHILD – Make certain your child wears some ID each day. ID bracelet or kids dog tags attached to their belt loop. This protects your child if they get separated during an outing. 4. LABELS – It is important to label all of your child’s belongings with stickers or iron on labels. Make sure their things come home with them. 5. PREVIEW – Will the camp allow you to come is advance to walk thru the camp grounds with your child? For some child an advance preview will help them feel more comfortable. 6. CONTACT INFO – Get emergency contact info for the camp. Ask about the camp contact and visitor policy.

Monkeyz Kloset How a Community-Oriented Business was Founded

7. LETTERS/PACKAGES – Send your child with pre-addressed stamped postcards to write home. I start sending letters a couple days before they leave so they get mail early in the week. Mail is a huge part of camp. 8. PHOTOS – Send your child with a disposable camera to take pictures. Send family photos with your child if they will make them feel more comfortable. 9. CLOTHES – I found it helpful to pack each days clothes/underwear/socks in a 2 gallon zip-lock bag. Then they can change each day putting the dirty clothes back in that bag. Label each clothing item. Copyright 2010, Kay Green, My Precious Kid Child Safety & Baby Gear Store

Autism Health and Wellness Vol. 2 Issue 3 • Summer 2010 •

It all started about seven years ago when Beth said, “You know, instead of selling things on ebay, I should just open a store.” Of course, at the time, she was working for someone else and since then had always been apprehensive to take the leap of faith necessary to actually do it. I’m Deron, Beth’s husband, and this is the story of how the Monkey came to be a reality. After that fateful day when the seed had been planted, it was promptly pushed to the back burner because we were so busy trying to find out why we couldn’t expand our little family. We always wanted children in the worst way, but so far it was still just the two of us (plus a menagerie of pets that could have filled a zoo). Many doctor visits later, the verdict was delivered; we were not going to have children without the use of fertility drugs.

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Of course with all of the risks involved with any sort of hormonal drug, we decided that we would find another way. We tried the foster program but found that process far too heartbreaking to continue. Later, we finally decided on a private adoption of a child from China. Since 99.5% of the children adopted from China are girls, we planned on having a baby girl and set about preparing for her. After all of the paperwork was finished and initial deposits had been paid, we were then simply waiting for the day our name came up and we would be on our way. You can imagine my surprise the morning Beth woke me up to tell me she was pregnant.

to move in. The racks and shelves quickly filled with great stuff consigned to us by the trusting souls who responded to our ads before the store was ready and handed over their belongings to my wife. We offer a big Thank You to those early consignors…we couldn’t have done it without you! Before we knew it, opening day was upon us, ready or not. To say that the reception we received when we opened was surprising would be an understatement. It is very humbling for us to have been accepted into the community as quickly as we have…and for that we thank all of you!

My first thought was that I hoped we were going to be having a girl because if not, our boy would be wearing some really pretty dresses. We had spent the last year amassing a wardrobe worthy of a princess and would have been quite unprepared for a boy. Luckily, we got our girl and I’ve been wrapped around her finger from day one.

In addition to all of the new and gently-loved clothing (infants to juniors plus maternity) and baby gear, we also have toys, gifts, and lots of accessories. We have begun to carry boutique items that are hand-made by local parents including jewelry, glassware, tutus, and hair clips. Monkeyz Kloset is also a distributor for new items from Rockin’ Mamas, Babi-Kini, Charlie’s Soap, Baby Bunches, Baby K’tan, and Pinkaxle. With all of this available, Monkeyz Kloset has everything you need from pregnancy to birth to teen years. Plus, we get new merchandise every Tuesday and Thursday so there’s always something new to see at the Kloset.

A couple of years later, we received a second miracle when our son was born. You’re surely wondering what this has to do with the genesis of the store but I’m getting there. At this point, Beth was on an extended maternity leave, during which she was laidoff by her employer. Several months into a long and unsuccessful job search, she reminded me of the idea she had had all those years before. Without anything to lose, this was the perfect time for Beth to take the aforementioned leap of faith. The first thing she did was to run a contest on Facebook to come up with a name with the winner receiving a gift certificate after we opened. Many of her friends came up with great names…but they were either taken or the web-sites were unavailable. Then one evening, I said “we call the kids monkeys all the time, how about Monkeys’ Closet?” She replied semi-enthusiastically, “it’s ok I guess.” I said, “hold on, if we spell Monkeys with a Z at the end and Closet with a K it would stand for Zoey and Kieran” our kids’ names. Needless to say I won the contest…still haven’t seen that gift certificate though.

At Monkeyz Kloset we believe that everyone who lives in our community is part of the same family working toward a common goal. We all want our children to have everything they need to keep them happy and healthy. We all want our community to be peaceful and to help others when possible. So, come on in and see us…you’ll be treated like family. Just don’t get mad at us when the kids don’t want to leave!

Once we had the name, everything else fell into place like the last few pieces of a jigsaw puzzle. We knew that we had to have a safe and fun place for children to come and play while their parents shopped. We knew that we wanted to have a bright and cheery décor that would boost the mood of customers as they walked in the door. Most importantly, we knew that we wanted the store to feel comfortable for people as if it were an extension of their homes. That’s when Beth really put me to work. Seventeen trips to Home Depot and about 89 gallons of paint later, we were ready

Autism Health and Wellness Vol. 2 Issue 3 • Summer 2010 •

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Compounding Q & A By Post Haste Pharmacy In every field of medicine, there are some patients who don’t respond to traditional methods of treatment. Sometimes they need medicine at strengths that are not manufactured by drug companies, or perhaps they simply need a different method of ingesting a medication. Pharmacy compounding meets these needs. It provides a way for physicians and compounding pharmacists to customize an individualized prescription for the specific need of their patient. Compounding provides solutions which are not met by commercial products. Q: What is compounding and what are its benefits? Pharmacy compounding is the art and science of preparing customized medications for patients. Its practice dates back to the origins of pharmacy; yet, compounding’s presence in the pharmacy profession has changed over the years. In the 1930s and 1940s, approximately 60 percent of all medications were compounded. With the advent of drug manufacturing in the 1950s and ‘60s, compounding rapidly declined. The pharmacist’s role as a preparer of medications quickly changed to that of a dispenser of manufactured dosage forms. Within the last two decades, though, compounding has experienced a resurgence as modern technology and innovative techniques and research have allowed more pharmacists to customize medications to meet specific patient needs. 888-498-1115

Autism Health and Wellness Vol. 2 Issue 3 • Summer 2010 •

There are several reasons why pharmacists compound prescription medications. The most important one is what the medical community calls “patient non-compliance.” Many patients are allergic to preservatives or dyes, or are sensitive to standard drug strengths. With a physician’s consent, a compounding pharmacist can change the strength of a medication, alter its form to make it easier for the patient to ingest, or add flavor to make it more palatable. The pharmacist also can prepare the medication using several unique delivery systems, such as a sublingual troche or lozenge, a lollipop, or a transdermal gel or cream that can be absorbed through the skin. For those patients who are having a hard time swallowing a capsule, a compounding pharmacist can make a liquid suspension instead. Compounding pharmacists have the opportunity to work with a variety of practice specialties, such as hospice, pediatrics, pain management, and OB/GYN, which in turn broadens the scope of their practices and creates other opportunities to provide other pharmacist care services. Your pharmacy can become a compounding pharmacy – one that is committed to providing high-quality compounded medications in the dosage form and strength prescribed by the physician. This triad relationship between the patient, the physician, and the pharmacist is

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vital to the process of compounding so all three can work together to solve unique medical problems. Q: Can children or the elderly use compounded medication? Yes. Children and the elderly are often the types of patients who benefit most from compounding. Often, parents have a tough time getting their children to take medicine because of the taste. A compounding pharmacist can work directly with the physician and the patient to select a flavoring agent, such as vanilla butternut or tutti frutti, which provides both an appropriate match for the medication’s properties and the patient’s taste preferences.

Analysis for all chemicals received, verifying the identity of every bulk chemical received both before repackaging and completing a second identity test after repackaging, conducting regular tests of all chemicals in inventory, and verifying all unique identifier numbers prior to shipping. As a repackager of unformulated chemicals for pharmacy compounding, PCCA is registered and inspected by the FDA and DEA. The company is also licensed in the state of Texas and other states where licensure is required. Q: Are doctors aware of compounding?

Compounding pharmacists also have helped patients who are experiencing chronic pain. For example, some arthritic patients cannot take certain medications due to gastrointestinal side effects. Working with their physician’s prescription, a compounding pharmacist can provide them with a topical preparation with the anti-inflammatory or analgesic their doctor has prescribed for them. Compounded prescriptions often are used for pain management in hospice care.

Prescription compounding is a rapidly growing component of many physicians’ practices. But in today’s world of aggressive marketing by drug manufacturers, some may not realize the extent of compounding’s resurgence in recent years. Ask your physician about compounding. Then get in touch with a compounding pharmacy – one that is committed to providing highquality compounded medications in the dosage form and strength prescribed by the physician.

Q: What kinds of prescriptions can be compounded?

Post Haste Pharmacy (954) 989-6524

Almost any kind. Compounded prescriptions are ideal for any patient requiring unique dosages and/or delivery devices, which can take the form of solutions, suppositories, sprays, oral rinses, lollipops and even as transdermal sticks. Compounding applications can include: Bio-identical Hormone Replacement Therapy, Veterinary, Hospice, Pediatric, Ophthalmic, Dental, Otic (for the ear), Dermatology, Medication Flavoring, Chronic Pain Management, Neuropathies, Sports Medicine, Infertility, Wound Therapy, Podiatry and Gastroenterology.

New Political Committee to Ensure Excellence in Special Needs Advocacy and Education. Interested parties should call (954) 701-7167 to take part in this endeavor, designed to better lives and increase educational standards for special needs! •

To Bring Up to Date Technology to Special Needs Classrooms

To Streamline McKay Scholarships for Early Treatment

To Increase Educator Awareness

To End Restraining Rooms

To Advocate for the Best Resources for Early Treatment and Independence

To Help Parents and Teachers Work Together

Q: Is compounding legal? Is it safe? Compounding has been part of healthcare since the origins of pharmacy, and is widely used today in all areas of the industry, from hospitals to nuclear medicine. Over the last decade, compounding’s resurgence has largely benefited from advances in technology, quality control and research methodology. The Food and Drug Administration has stated that compounded prescriptions are both ethical and legal as long as they are prescribed by a licensed practitioner for a specific patient and compounded by a licensed pharmacy. In addition, compounding is regulated by state boards of pharmacy. PCCA’s Quality Control department is exhaustively devoted to assuring the quality of the chemicals received, repackaged, and sold to our members. Steps include obtaining a Certificate of

Autism Health and Wellness Vol. 2 Issue 3 • Summer 2010 •

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Directory of Businesses Support our advertisers who bring you the needed information found in Autism Health and Wellness. Below is a directory of businesses. To advertise please call (954) 353-1898 or email Westlake Academy (School With Advanced Special Needs Curriculum) Therapies 4 Kids (Complete Therapies/Groups) Dr. Janet Flowers (Dolphin Therapy) Post Haste Pharmacy (Compounding) Domata Living Flour (Gluten Free Foods) Tropical Chiropractic (Chiro Therapy) Bakery of Main (Gluten Free Bakery) Center for Brain Training (Neurofeedback) Heaven Mills (Gluten Free Specialty) Playworks (Therapeutic Toys) LoJack (Safety-Tracking) Promised Land Therapy (School/Ed. Program) Yomin Postelnik for Florida House (Campaign) Center for H.O.P.E. (Hyperbaric & More) Abi’s Place (School & SPECIAL EVENT) Gluten Free Creations (GF/CF Baked Goods) Asher’s Journal (Connects Parents/Therapists) QCharm (Speech Enhancement/Substitute) Tutoring in Your Home (Special Needs Tutors) Austria’s Finest (Health Drinks & Supplements) Monkeyz Kloset (Consignment Boutique) My Precious Kid (Child Safety Gear) Michelle Weppner (GF/CF Diet Info) Lizzie the Clown (Child Entertainment) Diatomaceous Earth (Health Supplement) Anne Blanford (Special Needs Attorney) Spectrum Supplements (Autism Supplement) Juice Plus (Nutrition Therapy) Linda’s Diet Delights (Gluten Free Foods) Autism Health and Wellness (Sales Position) The Friendship Circle (Activism) IRPW (Non-Profit Development) Primerica (Various Insurance) Special Needs Political Committee (Activism)

Autism Health and Wellness Vol. 2 Issue 3 • Summer 2010 •

See Back Cover & Pg 31 See Inside Back Cover & Pg 33 See Inside Front Cover See Pg 19 See Pg 20 See Pg 20 See Pgs 24 & 25 See Pg 25 See Pg 19 & 23 See Pg 13 See Pgs 2 & 36 See Pg 4 & 26 See Pg 26 See Pg 29 See Pgs 32 & 36 See Pg 33 & 43 See Pg 28 See Pg 41 See Pg 41 See Pg 18 See Pg 40 See Pg 39 See Pg 32 See Pg 18 See Pg 17 See Pg 7 See Pg 9 See Pg 28 See Pg 15 See Pg 36 & 44 See Pg 37 See Pg 38 See Pgs 30 & 32 See Pg 42

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Music Therapy:


MusicMakers' Parent & Child Music and Art Classes Understanding the connections music provides is knowing that brain cells reprogram themselves mostly through an enriched environment Call (954) 480-6789 Email

Friendly Tire Company - Friendly Mike Dealer of New & Used Tires 5415 NW 15th St – Bays 5 & 30 Margate, FL 33063 (954) 977-9445 or (954) 977-9446 Reg. #MV20398 Excellence is Our Goal For $2 off all tires mention Autism Health and Wellness

Medical: Syndion® Do you have a picky eater? Do developmental, gastrointestinal or behavioral issues limit broad food choices? Syndion may help! Safety & efficacy documented by a clinical study. or call 1-877-SYNDION for more information. Special Needs Education: Promised Land Therapy Verbal Behavior School for Autism (Please notice our NEW address) 22840 Old Dixie Hwy Goulds, FL 33170 Extended Program for children with Autism! Call (305)255-9561 Email or go to for more info Grass-Fed Meat: Slanker's Grass-Fed Meats Brain Function is Unequivocally Food Dependent

Gluten Free Soap: Gluten- Free Savonnerie No dyes, soy, peanuts, corn or casein. Fragrance-free, allergen-specific, paraben-free soaps, Hair care and skin care for the entire family. Full disclosure of all ingredients used. Vegan and biodegradable. www. Ph: (888) 643-7627 Kids Hair Salon: Cow Licks Kids Salon 19635 State Road 7 Boca Raton, FL 33498-4746 (561) 488-6100 Compounding Pharmacy: Atlantic Pharmacy and Compounding (954) 366-6519

Join Our Team!

866-SLANKER (752-6537)

ADVERTISE WITH US Make a difference and benefit too! Call (954) 353-1898 or email Or call to become a Sales Executive & benefit while making a difference as well! A Unique Magazine and a Friendly Atmosphere

Autism Health and Wellness Vol. 2 Issue 3 • Summer 2010 •

Looking for dedicated people to grow this magazine and make it stronger. Call (954) 353-1898 or email

Doing good while starting out on a bright career at the same time. Page 44

What Does Westlake Academy Do? Westlake Academy is dedicated to educating students with specific learning challenges, special needs and developmental disabilities in grades K through 12. • Attention Deficit Disorders (ADD, ADHD) • Cognitive Impairments • Non-Verbal Learning Disabilities (NVLD) • Asperger’s Syndrome • Autism • The Acquisition of Language and Communication Skills • Visual and Auditory Processing Concerns • Academic, Pre-academic, Independent Functioning and Socialization Skills

Parents: Look to Westlake Academy to partner with you to meet the academic and social needs of your child. Our central focus is to create the best opportunity for your child to achieve their optimum potential in a safe, unique and progressive educational environment.

‘A Vision for Learning’

Westlake Academy focuses on reinforcement in learning. A great deal of emphases is place on motivation for the student to respond. Although much of the instruction is provided in a 1:1 learning environment, the Academy also understands the importance for students to generalize skills into the natural environment. Our students come from both public and private schools where they have not reached their academic and social potentials. Westlake Academy realizes that a learning challenge can present in many ways that may include difficulty with reading comprehension, word recognition, mathematics, or with memory for facts or names. Our students may also have issues expressing their emotions and opinions, or expressing themselves in writing. Our staff of specialists develops effective annual goals with observable behavior, conditions and criterion, for each our students to improve….. • Functional Life Skills • Hyperactivity • Socialization Skills • Coping skills • Self-concept • Reading Comprehension • Motivation • Math Computation • Planning and Organization Skills • School and Classroom Behaviors • Simplifying Concepts • Writing Skills • Time Management • Impulse Control

A Track Record of True Success Across the Board! Approved for Title I - IV, McKay and SUFS Scholarship Programs

Autism Health and Wellness Magazine, Vol. 2, Issue 3  

Autism Health and Wellness is unique, and uniquely appreciated by the autism community, social service agencies and caregivers. The magazine...