Home / Press Release / People on Autism spectrum die decades earlier, study says

People on Autism spectrum die decades earlier, study says

Most of the normal, healthy don’t know the fact that autism, one of the most underrated and one of the most common mental diseases, currently creating a wave in the medical world with its increasing rampant running all over the world. The condition of autism is not caused by vaccines, and it is often taken lightly or even misinterpreted because of the much lower amount of media coverage like the more “mainstream” mental illness – Sociopathy, Depression or PTSD.

However, autism is not, by any means, easy to live with. On the contrary, it’s extremely difficult to lead a normal life for the people suffering from autism by the way this psychological disorder manifests. According to a report released by UK’s Autistica and Sweden’s Karolinska Institute, autism begets much shorter life spans for sufferers.

UK-based autism charity Autistica’s Chief Executive Jon Spiers said:

“This new research confirms the true scale of the hidden mortality crisis in autism. The inequality in outcomes for autistic people shown in this data is shameful. We cannot accept a situation where many autistic people will never see their 40th birthday. Everyone involved in supporting people on the autism spectrum from the Government right down to local care providers has a responsibility to step up and start saving lives as soon as possible.”
The experts said bullying was a cause of suicide in autism cases as well as people going undiagnosed with depression due to them experience difficulties communicating.

Mr Spiers added, “There is no single issue that is causing these huge rates of premature death. It could be social factors, biological factors as we know more people with autism are prone to mental health problems and epilepsy. It really needs an enormous research effort. Mortality in autism was not known as a significant problem until now.”

Shorter life spans and causes of death
According to the researchers, autism patients die far earlier than the average population. But the time gap from their death and average people’s death depends on various factors like the type of their psychological disorder. Like many other “popular” diseases/syndromes/medical conditions as we normal people know, there are several types of autism, which contributes differently towards the early-death of a person suffering from the disorder.

Mark Lever, chief executive of the National Autistic Society, said the situation could be even worse in the UK.

“We have no reason to believe the situation would be that different here,” he added.

A Department of Health spokesperson said: “We have made monumental strides in the way we treat conditions such as autism in this country, but we must speed up progress even further.

“That is why we are working alongside people with autism, and their carers, to make sure they have access to healthcare with adjustments made for their conditions.”

The lightest form of this mental disorder has an average death time of 18-years earlier than the average, while the more severe form of autism that causes learning disabilities kind of issues causes the patient to die about 30-years earlier than the average. People with the highest form of autism have a 40 percent higher chance to die from “epilepsy” than other people. The leading cause of death for the people who have the lightest form of autism is suicide – nine times more likely than the average people.

Mark Lever, chief executive of the National Autistic Society, said:

“While this report is based on Swedish research, we have no reason to believe the situation would be that different here. Indeed, we fear it could be worse. The Government and national health authorities must urgently investigate what’s going on in this country and start to put things right.”
More about the study
The researchers from the Sweden looked at a huge sample of 27,000 adults suffering from autism for the study. The team has also looked at whopping 2.7 million of healthy adults. The study was funded by the autism philanthropy group Autistica in the UK, the study is meant to raise awareness about the awful condition.

In the United Kingdom alone, there are over 700,000 people, about 1 percent of the total population, suffering from the autism spectrum disorders. So far, the study only talked about the diagnosed cases. The total yearly cost of autism in the UK is a whopping $46 billion.

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