According to researchers, letting your child spend time with grandma has benefits beyond just free daycare.
In a recent study, young kids who spent time with their grandmothers were diagnosed with autism at a younger age than their peers who didn't see their elders. This is huge news!
“Early diagnosis means early intervention, which is critical for improving treatment outcomes," Joseph Buxbaum, the senior author of the study and the director of the Seaver Autism Center at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York, told Reuters by email.
Children as young as 2 years old can be diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), but most kids won't be formally diagnosed until age 4. Young children have brains that are more adaptable, so they typically respond better to treatment than older children. That's why it's so important to start treatment after the first signs.
This study found that 25 percent of the time, someone other than a parent first notices autism symptoms. The average age of diagnosis of the kids in the study was 40 months, but when a child regularly spent time with his or her grandmother, he or she was diagnosed about five months earlier.
Researchers also discovered a few other interesting tidbits, which include:
- Only children with autism were diagnosed six to eight months earlier than children with siblings.
- Younger siblings were diagnosed nine to 10 months earlier than the oldest child was.
- When someone other than a parent first detected that a child might have autism, 59 percent of the time it was a grandparent, 27 percent of the time that person was a maternal grandparent.
This news is just another reason to teach your kids to enjoy spending time with their grandparents! If you or a family member thinks your child or grandchild may have autism, talk to your doctor. This is just another