Central Maryland School of Massage

Massage Therapy Assists in Improving Autism Spectrum Disorders in Children

Studies revealed Children with Autism showed less autistic behavior and improved social skills with the help of pediatric massage therapy.


Frederick, MD -- (SBWIRE) -- 04/18/2014 -- Millions of children worldwide are diagnosed of developmental disorders within the autism spectrum classification. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention or CDC, autism diagnoses today are 1 in every 50 children from 1 in every 5,000 children in 1980. Studies also showed boys appear to be affected five times more than girls.

Causes of autism are fairly known amidst numerous theories. However, autism-like conditions such Asperger’s disorder, Rett Syndrome, Pervasive Developmental Disorder and Childhood Disintegrative Disorder are now integrated to autism spectrum disorder diagnosis.

According to the Autism Research Institute, autism is a severe developmental disorder that starts during birth or within the first two-and-a-half years of life. Most children with autism are perfectly normal in appearance, but spend their time engaged in puzzling behaviors that are markedly different from those of neuro-typically developing children. Autism spectrum disorders interfere with brain’s normal development in the areas that influence reasoning, social interaction, motor skills, communication skills, and attention. Children with autism spectrum disorders are typically deficient in verbal and nonverbal communication, social interaction, and play activities.

Developmental disorders occur across a spectrum, affecting individuals differently. Some children lose the ability to speak, some might have motor impairment, and many lack social and emotional awareness. Behaviors range from hyperactivity to serious self-injury. Studies report other children show lack of eye contact and have an aversion to touch and tactile stimulation making it difficult for children with ASD to communicate with others. If left untreated, children do not develop the skills they need to become a fully functioning part of society and leads to frustrated social isolation.

Autism as of now is incurable, and behaviors associated with the disorder persist throughout the child’s lifetime.

Therapeutic Massage for ASD

Unknown to many, children with ASD have significantly lower levels of oxytocin, a hormone which is associated with emotional connections and feelings of love. It causes feelings of warmth and relaxation and decreases levels of stress. Research studies have proven Oxytocin is released in human body during and after receiving nurturing touch. A Study conducted in 2007 reported that oxytocin helped autistic individuals retain the ability to evaluate the emotional significance of speech and also showed a decrease in autism spectrum repetitive behaviors. Massage provides relaxation, stress reduction and calm muscle spasms among individuals with Autism. This type of physical intervention promotes on-task and social relatedness behavior showing less erratic behavior and heightened attentiveness after receiving massage therapy. This approach coupled with sensory integration proved to be beneficial in reducing inattentiveness, touch aversion and withdrawal on patients. It also helps ASD patients become accustomed to tactile stimulation and aides in body awareness. Often by incorporating massage therapy into daily routines, ASD patients experience decreased issues with sleeping.

Massage and touch therapy techniques for children with varied developmental challenges yield different results among patients and should be practiced under direct supervision of medical practitioners.

Pediatric Massage therapy and other massage therapy techniques are being offered in different certified massage therapy schools across States.

About Central Maryland School of Massage
Central Maryland School of Massage (CMSM) prides itself on providing excellent educational opportunities for individuals seeking a profession in the Massage Therapy field. The mission of CMSM continues to be to provide regional businesses and residents with an outstanding source of education that promotes health and overall well-being.

The school has continued to update and improve its educational opportunities and facilities. As industry demands grow and change, CMSM keeps pace, offering hands-on training. By providing quality instruction, personalized attention, and excellent training techniques, we prepare our graduates to excel in their future pursuits. Our graduates and prospective employers are secure in the knowledge that CMSM graduates have the skills necessary for career success."