Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Kids With Autism May Find Human Voice Unpleasant

A new brain-imaging study could help explain why children with autism have difficulty with verbal communication: They may not get much pleasure from the human voice.

Researchers found that those with the disorder showed weaker connections between the brain's voice-processing areas and its "reward" centers compared to those without.

That suggests that kids with autism do not get the same pleasure from the human voice that typically developing children do, researchers said.

"When we speak, we don't only convey information, we convey emotion and social cues," said Daniel Abrams, a researcher at Stanford University in Palo Alto, Calif., who led the new study.

 It's well known that children with autism have difficulty reading those cues and having conversations. And children with more severe autism may be completely indifferent to the sound of the human voice.

There are competing theories on why that is, Abrams said. "One theory is that, although these children have normal hearing, there's a problem in the brain's sound processing," he explained.
Another theory is that "social cues," including other people's speech, don't hit the brain's reward system in the typical way. "Our findings support this idea," Abrams said. "There may be some deficit in the brain circuitry related to reward."

Read the whole story at USNews.com


  1. this finding explains so many things ,,,,and why there can be so many melt downs in our day to day living ,,thank you for publishing this finding ,,bless all our dear ones living with Autism,xxx

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