Researchers previously carried out have already proposed indicative risks about pregnant women who are exposed to higher levels of air pollutants have a greater risk in their child being born autistic.
The current study suggests that young mothers who are seen to be living near farms and fields where there is a higher concentration of chemical pesticides to be at a greater risk of having their offspring being born autistic or end up being diagnosed with other forms of DD (developmental delays).
Janie F. Shelton, from the UC-Davis, led the research team during the course of the study.
Autism is a disorder that is characterized by complexities in the development of the brain. Further, individuals diagnosed on the spectrum are seen to have other complexities such as not being socially interactive while facing other issues with their verbal and non-verbal communication.
The data available with the Center for Disease Control and Prevention says, 1 in 68 children are born autistic in the USA alone.
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Further, earlier researches have also indicated that external environmental factors, for instance; being exposed to pesticides during the phase of pregnancy is also seen to influence developmental disorders in children.
To further understand, the team investigated whether pesticide influence and residential proximity had anything to do with increased ASD risk.
The reports highlighted, closer proximities lead to autism risks being increased.
To further understand in-depth earlier data, from the Childhood Risk of Autism from Genetics and Environment was analyzed, including children between the age brackets of two to five years.
It was observed, young mothers residing in areas that were located near to pesticide sites at the time of their pregnancy were seen to be two third more likely to have their offspring developing autism in comparison to mothers who lived away from pesticide prone places.
During their time of hospitalization, participants were asked to complete a questionnaire. The questionnaires required participants to mention their residing locations.
The families were seen to be residing in Central Valley, San Francisco and Sacramento Valley in the California.
The team analyzed the data from Californian Pesticide Usage reports to identify commercial pesticide applications and their levels in these areas.
The obtained results of the report examination highlighted two third of the study participants were seen to be living near places (2 to 2.5 kilometers) where pesticides were applied in greater number.
Mothers who had close proximity to pesticides areas were seen to be at an increased autism risk than the ones who were living far away.
Pesticides are seen to be the major interfering component with neurotransmitters found in the developing brain which in a way alters a child’s learning ability and his behavior.
The researchers stress fetal exposures to pesticides is of a greater concern. A young developing brain is more vulnerable to toxic chemicals than adults.
Other notable sources of pesticide exposure such as being exposed from the institutions of the study among others were not considered during the course of the study. Thus, it should be noted that the above findings are subjected to few limitations.