"Dissecting" Autism. Marius Zamfir: "I couldn't accept that's how the child was born! In over 90% of cases, the child, up to a certain point, had a good development!"

Data publicării:
"Dissecting" Autism. Marius Zamfir: "I couldn't accept that's how the child was born! In over 90% of cases, the child, up to a certain point, had a good development!" / PHOTO: freepik.com @ksenia_she
"Dissecting" Autism. Marius Zamfir: "I couldn't accept that's how the child was born! In over 90% of cases, the child, up to a certain point, had a good development!" / PHOTO: freepik.com @ksenia_she

Marius Zamfir, clinical psychologist and expert in the human microbiome, as well as president of the Association for Child Mental Health, spoke on Present Parents, a show moderated by the editor-in-chief of ParintisiPitici.ro Loredana Iriciuc, about what autism is.

Clinical psychologist Marius Zamfir, president and founding member of the Association for Child Mental Health "Saint Seraphim of Sarov" since 2010, member of the Institute of Judicial Psychology since 2016, and listed in the Register of Psychologist Experts with specialties in clinical psychology and judicial psychology since 2017, has been working with children with various developmental delays since 2005.

The expert emphasized that in practice, approximately 15 characteristic behaviors are observed in the examined children. However, according to his statements, identifying just five of these behaviors could already suggest the presence of an autism spectrum disorder.

"In general, we observe about 15 behaviors in the respective child. It's enough to check off five of them, and we can already diagnose an autism spectrum disorder.

The idea is that at this moment, there is no medical instrument through which we can confirm this diagnosis. So, we don't have any type of MRI analysis, electroencephalogram, or genetic analysis that, at its conclusion, could state that this child is autistic because it emerged from that analysis.

We see that the diagnosis is made only based on clinical observation and recording of behaviors", said Marius Zamfir on Present Parents a show by ParintisiPitici.ro.

The President of the Association for Child Mental Health: "I couldn't accept that's how the child was born!"

PHOTO: freepik.com @dekazigzag

Marius Zamfir further emphasized that during his work, he evaluated a significant number of children, exceeding 1,000 in the last five years, who were diagnosed with autism. In his interactions with the parents of these children, he gathered essential information that contradicts the idea that autism is present from birth.

"The idea is that, working extensively in this field, I couldn't accept that, as many doctors claim, autism is a condition present at birth, that's how the child is born.

Firstly, I've had a very large clinical caseload. In just the last 5 years, I've evaluated over 1,000 newly diagnosed children with this disorder. In discussions with parents, we learn many quite important pieces of information.

In almost over 90% of cases, the child, until a certain point, seemed to have a good development, almost a normal development. At a certain point, there can be several triggers; the child started to lose skills or plateaued, remaining at the same level of abilities, unable to progress from there", the clinical psychologist further stated.

Marius Zamfir: "Let's perform a dissection and delve into the interior of this autism. What is autism?"

PHOTO: freepik.com @kuprevich

Marius Zamfir revealed that an essential tool in understanding autism has been a psychological autopsy, which he learned about at the Institute of Judicial Psychology. This tool involves a detailed and thorough analysis of the internal mechanisms of autism to reveal the essence of this disorder.

From the perspective of impairment, Zamfir highlighted two major areas affected by autism.

"The first area and the most affected is the social domain. The child no longer makes eye contact, doesn't follow others, doesn't respond to their name, and lacks social interaction and joy in human relationships.

Another affected area in autism is the neurological mechanisms, more precisely the neurosynaptic mechanisms where language, communication, and thinking mechanisms should develop.

We should view these two areas as factories that should produce something. For instance, the dopaminergic system area should produce pleasure hormones during social interaction. In this psychological autopsy, when delving deep, we see that social mechanisms are governed by the dopaminergic system, which produces pleasure hormones during social interaction. Social interaction heavily influences our development as humans, especially a child's development. Because a significant portion of learning mechanisms primarily relies on psychosocial mechanisms.

Think about an ordinary day for an adult, and you'll see that if we analyze our behaviors, over 80-90% of our daily activities while doing them, we don't feel like doing them. And behind them, we have social motivations. So, we see how dependent we are on this dopaminergic mechanism", the expert said.

Clinical psychologist Zamfir: "The young child needs three learning mechanisms"

PHOTO: freepik.com @EyeEm

The President of the Association for Child Mental Health emphasized the importance of certain learning mechanisms in the development of young children. According to his statements, these mechanisms are crucial for the progress and optimal integration of the child into their environment.

"But, especially in young children, they are very important! The young child, to develop, needs three learning mechanisms.

The first mechanism is social imitation, the ability to imitate people.

The second social mechanism is receptive language, understanding communication. Even if they don't speak, a child of 1 year, 1 and a half at the latest, should understand when asked 'Where's mommy?', to look at mommy, 'Where's the cat?', to look at the cat.

And the third mechanism of learning, and the most important, builds upon the first two, is symbolic play. That play where the child manipulates objects, but behind the manipulation, there's a story, a very sophisticated story", Marius Zamfir further emphasized.

Marius Zamfir: "Learning mechanisms are based on psychosocial mechanisms"

PHOTO: freepik.com @The Yuri Arcurs Collection

According to his observations, the three learning mechanisms - social imitation, receptive language, and symbolic play - are closely linked to three basic psychosocial mechanisms.

"The idea is that all these three learning mechanisms rely on psychosocial mechanisms, which are also three in number.

The first and most important psychosocial mechanism is social attention. For a child to be able to imitate people, they need to look at people.

The second social mechanism is social motivation because it's not enough for the child to look at mom, dad, or grandma for two seconds; they need to like it, to have motivation, to either like mom or like what mom does to follow her for a longer period.

And the third psychosocial mechanism is social will.

So, attention - I'm looking at mom, motivation - I'm following her for a longer period, and will - now I'm making an effort to try to do what mom does.

Because most of the time, in autism, the neuro-synaptic areas aren't affected, the areas that should develop language, communication, and thinking, but the social areas are affected. But if the child no longer follows people, they can't learn anymore. Because the socialization area, the language area, and the cognition area are very closely linked to each other. If one of them lags, it holds all the other three back.

And as I was saying, in autism, this dopaminergic system is affected, which produces pleasure hormones in social interaction, and this neuro-synaptic system that produces neuronal networks", Marius Zamfir further stated.

Google News icon  Fiți la curent cu ultimele noutăți. Urmăriți Parinți și Pitici și pe Google News

Te-a ajutat acest articol?

Urmărește pagina de Facebook Părinți și pitici și pagina de Instagram Părinți și pitici și accesează mai mult conținut util pentru a avea grijă de copilul tău în fiecare etapă a dezvoltării lui.

Autorul articolului: Loredana Iriciuc | Categorie: English

DC Media Group Audience