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Wednesday, January 16, 2019

"Ask Dr Tony-Answers Asperger's & Autism" (Craig R. Evans with Dr Tony Attwood)

TITLE: Ask Dr. Tony: Answers from the World's Leading Authority on Asperger's Syndrome/High-Functioning Autism
AUTHOR: Craig R. Evans with Dr Tony Attwood
PUBLISHER: Arlington, TX, Future Horizons, 2018, (200 pages).

It began with the website called "Autism Hangout" in 2006. The purpose was to provide immediate information on autism containing expert advice from practitioners, medical professionals, researchers, social workers, teachers, and experienced thought leaders. This idea progressed on to books and videos. One of the most popular segments was the interviews with Dr Tony Attwood, who was based in Brisbane, Australia. With close to 300 interviews, this initiative was very well received. Since then, the Dr Tony show has grown in popularity. This book is a transcript of the 2010 program called "Ask Dr Tony." Craig Evans is the interviewer with Dr Tony Attwood the expert authority on autism matters.

The book revolves around 17 top issues, ranked according to Evans's proprietary research in 2012-13. These issues are:

  1. Anxiety (98%)
  2. Self-Esteem/Self-Identity (95%)
  3. Aversion to Change (87%)
  4. Meltdowns (87%)
  5. Depression (87%)
  6. Sensory Issues
  7. Making and keeping friends
  8. Personal Management Issues
  9. Intimacy, dating, sex, and marriage
  10. Emotional availability
  11. Faking it
  12. Getting and keeping a job
  13. Disclosing a diagnosis
  14. Bullying
  15. Choosing a career
  16. Empathetic attunement
  17. Being diagnosed (Living with Autism)
Each of the issues are described in a question and answer format. This makes the book very personable as readers can eavesdrop on some of the most challenging issues as well as emotional ups and downs of parents and concerned family members. The rationale for the book is that people would still need immediate information when they are pressed to find out more about autism. Dr Tony describes his early foray into the field of autism. He was a volunteer at a special school and the way the children behaved struck a nerve in his curiosity. He asks questions about genetics and family history. He looks at risks. He sees successful treatments and outcomes that he wants to share the good news. For that, he redefines some of the successes as learning to accept who we are and the successful ways to enable patients to live well to the full. There are coping mechanisms; dealing with various scenarios; and what parents could do to minimize pain. By dealing with the top issues direct, readers will be able to jump in speedily into the issue of concern to learn critical insights. While this is not a medical journal per se, it is a book that educates and calms any anxieties that might arise. There is also a bonus section that covers some of the most common questions about autism.

For those of us interested in all things autism, Asperger's or any symptoms related to anxiety, consider picking up this book and read through the informative question and answer.

Craig Evans is a former communications executive and a film maker. He has a stepchild diagnosed with Asperger's. His aim is to speak as encouraging as possible on the topic of autism. Dr Tony Attwood is a clinical psychologist specializing in autism spectrum disorders. He has been a keynote speaker at autism conferences in Australia and other parts of the world.

Further questions about autism can be relayed at www.autism-hangout.com

Rating: 4 stars of 5.


This book has been provided courtesy of Future Horizons and NetGalley without requiring a positive review. All opinions offered above are mine unless otherwise stated or implied.

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