Spacing of pregnancies may play a factor in development of autism spectrum disorder

Posted on September 26, 2014

A new research, published in the Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, suggests the spacing of pregnancies may play a factor in the development of autism spectrum disorder (ASD).

Investigators discovered that children who were conceived either less than one year or more than five years after the birth of their prior sibling were more likely to be diagnosed with autism than children conceived following an interval of two to five years.

The study found that the risk of an autism diagnosis among children conceived less than 12 months following a sibling’s birth was one and a half times as high as those conceived following an interval of 24-59 months. Children conceived following an interval of 60-120 months were almost 30 percent more likely to be diagnosed with autism. For intervals of more than 120 months, the risk of autism was over 40 percent higher. The analysis has been adjusted for certain factors that might explain the association, such as parents’ age, prior number of children, and parental history of psychiatric disorders

It is, however, important to realize from this study that spacing of pregnancies per se is a cause of ASD — this is most likely a proxy of other factors that are more directly related to the chance of the child’s developing ASD. The importance of this finding lies in the clues that it can provide in terms of understanding how the prenatal environment is related to outcomes after birth.

Click on the link below to read the full article.


Source material from Psych Central


Mental Health News

  • The relationship between nightmares and suicidal behaviour

    newsthumbA study has shown that nightmares might enhance a sense of defeat, loss of faith and hope, and the feeling of being trapped that lead to one having ...

  • Sleep Paralysis

    newsthumbSleep Paralysis is when one is wide awake but finds that he or she is being restricted from any movement as if the body was paralyzed. It usually ...

  • The future for boys with ADHD

    newsthumbThis article talks about how ADHD affects boys and their future performances in school, work and ability to fit into society