Wednesday, September 10, 2008

A Really Useful Blog: Translating Autism

It's important for parents of kids with a diagnosis of autism or Asperger's to become well educated on the topic, but the task can be overwhelming, and confusing. That's why I'm excited to be adding a link on the side of my blog to Translating Autism, a blog written by "Nestor Lopez-Duran Ph.D., a clinical psychologist and neuroscience researcher working at a university-based child psychiatric institute in the mid west." This is a new blog, started in 2008 with the goal to "disseminate scientific findings in childhood onset disorders in a format that is useful and accessible to parents, educators and clinicians."

The internet is filled with information on autism, both fact and opinion, and it can be overwhelming to sort through everything out there. Translating Autism shows the latest research and gives the source of the information as well. The blog says that it discusses information from peer-reviewed journals, which I think is an important detail. (For those who aren't familiar with the term, articles in peer reviewed journals have undergone an analysis from other experts, generally to ensure that there's some scientific validity to the research methods. Clearly, not every example of poor science is found, but I think parents can generally trust information in peer reviewed journals more readily than claims that are just published elsewhere online.)

I found this blog's tone to be pretty accessible technically, written in an interesting manner, and I think it will be helpful to parents as well as adults trying to understand their own diagnosis. Of course, as the blog's author states, it's important to talk with your own medical doctor before taking any advice from a website. Please check it out and see for yourself.