Functional medicine tries to find and resolve the root cause problems in our bodies. In this way, functional medicine can serve as a helpful complement to more traditional therapies like speech, feeding, and occupational therapies.
If you have an autistic child there’s a good chance they’ve participated in occupational therapy at some point whether it was for sensory issues, dexterity problems, or balance and coordination deficits. Occupational therapy can be very helpful for children with autism.
Sensory aversions and sensory seeking behavior is very common with autistic children. Functional medicine begs the question, “Why?”.
Could your child’s aversion to crunchy food or hand washing (like my daughter Sophie) be the result of a nutrient deficiency, a toxicity, or a food sensitivity?
Magnesium as a Complement to Occupational Therapy
Magnesium is a common deficiency among most people and especially in our austic kids. This may be caused by genetics or the result of picky eating.
Magnesium glycinate is my go to unless constipation is an issue, If that’s the case I’ll recommend magnesium citrate. But magnesium glycinate is typically well absorbed and can even help with constipation to an extent.
Using a magnesium glycinate supplement gets the magnesium into our cells. This is incredibly important because magnesium is a cofactor to 350 reactions in our bodies. We need magnesium in order for those actions to happen.
Magnesium can also help with sensory seeking and sensory avoidance issues. And the great thing about this supplement is that it’s very benign. Unless your child has kidney issues you’re unlikely to have any negative side effects.
If you have a tough time getting your child to take supplements, you can try an epsom salt bath. We often forget that epsom salt is magnesium sulfate and it can be very calming for your child.
Our skin is porous and will easily absorb the magnesium this way, however, your child’s body will absorb everything in the epsom salt bath. So, make sure you’re buying a product without coloring. And if you do buy scented epsom salt, make sure it’s scented with essential oils.
Magnesium is a wonderful complement to traditional occupational therapy. Adding it to your child’s routine can help accelerate their progress.
Be gentle with yourself. You’re doing a great job.
I hope this information has been helpful to you as part of creating Your Autism Game Plan.
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