Autism Disease as a pattern to be healed By Dr Meeta Nihlani

Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) or Autism is an umbrella term for a group of developmental disorders that are neurological in origin and cause social, communication and behavioral challenges.

ASD is the third most common developmental disorder. It is mainly characterized by impaired social interaction and communication and the presence of repetitive behaviors or restricted interests. Children with ASD may also have their sensory sensitivity affected i.e., they may be under or over sensitive to certain senses.

Here is a brief overview of disorders that fall under the autism spectrum:

Autistic disorder: A child is diagnosed with autism when he or she has all the signs of symptoms of ASD.

Asperger’s Syndrome: Referred to as high functioning Autism, it is characterized by significant issues with social/emotional skills and obsessive focus on certain topics. There is no language or cognitive development delay. 

Pervasive Developmental Disorder Not Otherwise Specified (PDD NOS): PDD is often referred to as Atypical Autism because it is diagnosed when a child exhibits some but not all characteristics of autism. For instance, if a child exhibits speech delay and certain repetitive behaviors—he would most likely get a diagnosis of PDD (NOS)

Rett Syndrome: Rett Syndrome is a rare and severe disorder which is linked to a defect in the chromosome X, and therefore it mostly affects girls. Rett Syndrome is characterized by normal period of development followed by a slow regression in skills, often loss of communication skills and loss of purposeful hand movements.

Childhood Disintegrative Disorder: This is a very rare disorder where there is normal development in all areas initially and the onset of regression of skills happens much later than in other disorders of the spectrum. Children with Childhood Disintegrative Disorder experience loss of skills across all (language, social, behavioral and motor) development areas.

Earlier, each condition (autistic disorder, pervasive developmental disorder not otherwise specified (PDD-NOS), and Asperger syndrome) was diagnosed separately but now, these conditions are grouped together and are called as autism spectrum disorder.

Any child in the autism spectrum will have difficulties in three main areas:•

  • Social interaction (difficulty in building relationships, etc.)
  • •Social communication (difficulty in verbal/non-verbal communication, for instance body language, gestures, etc.)
  • •Social imagination (difficulty in flexibility of thought, organizing, etc.)

There may also be problems with development of motor skills and the presence of unusual repetitive behaviors such as hand flapping, rocking, etc.


Paracelsus says,
“No knowledge is perfect unless it includes an understanding of the origin- that is the beginning; and as all man’s diseases originate in his constitution, it is necessary that his constitution should be known if we wish to know his diseases.”

This is what differentiates Homoeopathy from other schools of medicine. A good homoeopathic physician in the true sense tries to trace the cause, the origin of the disease. Before prescribing he forms a constitutional picture of the patient. He finds the uncommon, peculiar, the rare, and the characteristic in the case and then matches this disease picture with the remedy picture. 

In Autism, sometimes we see more than one layer of pathology and that each layer corresponds to a different remedy, but the layers must be dealt with in the right sequence if progress is to be made and the personality of the patient at any given time will correspond to the most superficial layer, which represents the present frequency of the patients vital force. The human organism appears to retain a memory of all preceding chronic states of the body and mind. This memory includes certain inherited traits. Each stable state of body and mind can be considered a layer of the person’s constitution. Some people are born with several layers of pathology, which they inherit from their parents.

So, In cases of Autism Causation is important. Autism can be either Primary or Secondary. It can be associated with Developmental delays ,

Autism’s sensory issues can involve both hyper-sensitivities (over-responsiveness) and hypo-sensitivities (under-responsiveness) to a wide range of stimuli.

These can involve:

For example, many people on the spectrum are hyper-sensitive to bright lights or certain light wavelengths (e.g. from fluorescent lights). Many find certain sounds, smells and tastes overwhelming. Certain types of touch (light or deep) can feel extremely uncomfortable.  The distress caused by particular sensory stimuli can cause self-injurious and aggressive behavior in those unable to communicate their distress. Hypo-sensitivities are likewise common. A low sensitivity to pain is a classic example. Another is under-responsiveness to the body signals that help control balance and physical coordination. This can result in clumsiness, which has long been associated with autism.

The Totality of Causation, Hyper or Hypo sensitivity of the senses , the behavioral concomitant symptoms all indicate the peculiarity in each case. Remember each person with autism is unique, and this includes their personal sensitivities.

Mind; autism, mutinism:

agar AGRA aloe ALUM androc ars aspart bar-c bos-s brachy-s bufo cact calc calc-p CARC cham cupr hell kali-br LYC MED merc NAT-M nux-v plb sac-alb silstaph sulph syph tarent thuj TUB

Mind; vaccination, after:
apis bac borr-b dpt hep hyos pyrog stram THUJ tub uran

Generalities; delivery, parturition; after, puerperal; forceps delivery, after:

Mind; development, mental; arrested; vaccination, after:

borr-b thuj

Mind; talk, talking, talks; slow, late learning to:
AGAR aloe alum bac BAR-C bell bor CALC CALC-P carbn-s carc CAUST cic cina con excr-can hoch lant-p lyc mag-c med NAT-M nat-p nux-m op ph-ac PHOS plbpuls sanic sep sil sulph THUJ tub vip

Turbulent marriages can breed depression and impair health especially before and during conception. I have observed in my cases of Autism, the child does not feel safe in such an environment and chooses to close down in vitro itself especially in cases where domestic violence is seen in parents. Studies have concluded that on the psychological side, the multiple stresses of a troubled marriage are triggers for depression andthe development of a mood disorder sets the stage for psychological and biological vulnerability. A mood disorder history signifies a high-risk phenotype for emotional and physiological stress sensitivity in tandem with a greater risk for troubled relationships. That is why mother’s history during pregnancy is very meticulously elicited. In some cases, the emotional status of the father is also evaluated especially any violent streaks and addictions. Any accidents such of loss of parents or severe financial loss occurring to the parent during or before conception also triggers the possibility of Autism. I use these group of remedies when there is such a history. 

Mind; discords agg., ailments from; relatives, friends, between; parents:
acon ANT-T bufo chr gado-n gado-p hoch holm lant-c plac plut-n prot

If remarkable slowness or dullness is associated with Autism, we can think of delayed nerve impulses. So these remedies help us in the case,

Generalities; conduction of nerves delayed:

alum cocc

Speech is delayed in many cases. So these are the group of remedies which help in cases of Autism as most of the cases come with this as a presenting complaint.

Mind; talk, talking, talks; slow, late learning to:
AGAR aloe alum bac BAR-C bell bor CALC CALC-P carbn-s carc CAUST cic cina con excr-can hoch lant-p lyc mag-c med NAT-M nat-p nux-m op ph-ac PHOS plbpuls sanic sep sil sulph THUJ tub vip

Role of Diet in cases of Autism

Gastrointestinal co-morbidities are common in children with ASD

There is a strong correlation between the presence of gastrointestinal symptoms and autism severity as ASD patients with gastrointestinal symptoms display higher measures of irritability, anxiety and social withdrawal . Gut dysfunction in children with ASD deserves further investigation, especially given the potential for intervention. 

The concept of the “fragile gut” is proposed to be involved in a subset of children with ASD and that impaired gastrointestinal (GI) function, including deficiency in protein digestive capacity, is central to the GI symptoms associated with ASD and may exacerbate behavioral symptoms in ASD.

Based on these facts Gluten free, Sugar free and also Diary free diet is recommended and which definitely helps to deal with behavioral tantrums of the children and their sleep patterns improve with such a diet. We in Homeopathy have specific remedies for such cases . We can give these remedies if the total picture matches the case. 

Mind; activity; hyperactive; sugar, after:

Adjuvant therapies that can help with sensory issues are,

• Occupational therapy uses physical activities and strategies to help each person meet their sensory needs and better process sensory input in everyday environments

• Autism feeding programs can address aversions to tastes and food textures, as well as under- and over-sensitivities that can hamper chewing and swallowing.

• Speech therapy can include both sensitivity-reducing and sensory-stimulating activities that improve speech, swallowing and related muscle movements.

• Cognitive behavioral therapy can help gradually increase tolerance to overwhelming sensory experiences.