Clearlight would like to remind users that this should not be taken as direct medical advice, and you should always consult a licensed health practitioner before making any significant changes to your lifestyle or existing pain treatment regimen.
A condition that is still not very well understood is autism, a disorder that mainly targets the neurological system. Autism does not have a cure, while some treatments have been suggested to help reduce symptoms of severity, although more research in this field is much needed.
While infrared sauna detoxification has become popular in recent times, there is no link between the treatment, cause or symptoms of autism with infrared therapy. This article is going to look at some theories around autism, and the theorised role toxins play in the development of autism.
Understanding ourselves on a deeper level is difficult, to say the least, and while science does its best to uncover the mysteries of the mind, and body, the reality of the world is, still very little is known when it comes to human beings.
Being in the human body is difficult, emotionally, physically, and spiritually.
Added complexities of environmental impacts, socioeconomic status, cultural differences, and the like, cause an issue of identifying root causes for many illnesses, disorders, and conditions.
So what do we know about autism so far?
What causes autism?
While the root cause of autism is unknown, it is suggested to be generated from a combination of genetic and environmental factors, that at some stage of development have an effect on the brain.
A study in 2009 distinguished that the severity of autism is associated with toxic metal burden and red blood cell glutathione levels. The study states "This study demonstrates a significant positive association between the severity of autism and the relative body burden of toxic metals." although much more research is needed in this field to determine causality.
Can you be exposed to toxins before birth?
Simply put, yes.
While we may think of toxic exposure as a direct, environmental impact on oneself, understanding our body’s ability to store toxins opens a new avenue of discussion on the importance of detoxification.
In this instance, toxicity can become ‘generational’, and much like a genetic disease or illness, these toxins can be transferred during pregnancy.
A non-profit organisation, Environmental Working Group, conducted a study that tested umbilical cords in children and found over 212 chemical substances and pollutants.
As a baby is developing, any chemical exposure can be extremely detrimental. Chemicals affect the brain, and organs in the most critical stages of life, and continual development past these exposures allows for more adverse effects to arise compared to an adult.
The study also found that the direct level of toxicity found in the umbilical cord directly correlated to the level of IQ tested in the children.
While these small studies may seem scary in uncovering the impact toxins have on our lives, much further research is required to be able to determine any cause and effect results.
Does detoxification help autism?
The link between a toxic burden and autism was spoken about in the study mentioned earlier, and so naturally, detoxification becomes a topic of discussion.
There is no evidence to link detoxification with autism symptoms, cause, or treatment.
A 2017 study found that children with autism had higher concentrations of heavy metals; cadmium, mercury, and lead.
Without proper research, it is impossible to determine if detoxification has any effect on the symptoms of autism.
No matter how much infrared-saunas help your body’s detoxification processes through the skin, and enhance your overall ability to detoxify through the digestive system, and lymphatic system, the link between detoxification and autism does not yet exist.
While infrared saunas are a safe, and pragmatic way to detoxify - if you’re not pregnant or breastfeeding - a condition such as autism contains so many individual factors, that there may never be an answer or a one-size-fits-all approach.
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How does stress impact autism?
Suffering from a condition such as autism places a tremendous amount of stress on an individual. This comes from the nature of the chronic condition that is emotionally, and physically taxing on the human body.
This may be the reason why a common symptom people with autism have is an increased risk of having anxiety, specifically anxiety disorders.
Anxiety, in turn, is intertwined with having higher stress levels. Stress feeds anxiety, and having great anxiety levels feeds stress.
Infrared saunas are renowned for their ability to put you in a parasympathetic state, lower blood pressure, and relax you to unwind and de-stress.
By lowering stress, and anxiety, infrared saunas could benefit anyone who suffers from these symptoms. Simply spending time in the sauna, can provide a plethora of benefits if you are with someone, such as connection, and bonding, as well as stress relief and detoxification.