Looking for Causes- A Perennial Source of Controversy Discussion of autism has long been plagued by the simplistic models of causality that inform so many nature-nurture debates. Because the condition involves social symptoms, mid20th century research tended to look for social-psychological causes such as bad parenting, early-childhood trauma, or stress. A wide range of environmental exposures have been proposed as triggers or exacerbators of ASDs: heavy metals (including lead, mercury, cadmium, and arsenic); flame retardants; insecticides; phthalates used in vinyl and cosmetics; household cleaning products that could affect the immune system, such as antibacterial soaps; and in utero exposure to thalidomide, valproic acid, and bacterial or viral infections.
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"AUTISM-AN ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH ISSUE AFTER ALL?"Please download to view full document