Dangerous Ways Parents Try to Cure Their Child’s Autism

Dangerous Ways Parents Try to Cure Their Child’s Autism January 8, 2019

Children with autism are under attack by all facets of society. However, the most dangerous predators for many autistic children are their parents. Parents incapable of accepting their child’s diagnosis take extraordinary lengths to detox, fix, and repair their children. Charlatans sell them products to strip heavy metals, remove parasites from their child’s intestines, and detox from vaccine “damage.” Today I break down the most horrific ways parents abuse their children with autism using alternative medicine.

Miracle Mineral Solution

Miracle Mineral Solution is a product developed by Jim Humble. Humble “discovered” MMS while traveling in South America. He believes MMS cures everything from cancer to HIV. However, Humble’s bread and butter clients are parents with autistic children.

MMS is chlorine dioxide. Chlorine dioxide is an industrial strength bleach that companies use to strip textiles and treat water. Humble believes parasites in the stomach cause autism. He instructs parents to give their children bleach enemas and drinks spiked with bleach.

As a result, children end up with burns in their mouth and throat. MMS can cause respiratory distress. Additionally, the enemas provided to children end up stripping their bowel and intestine linings. Children end up with perforated bowels and intestines.

In a handful of cases, children and adults given MMS have died.

Chelation Therapy

Chelation therapy is a treatment designed to strip heavy metals from the body and brain. Alternative medicine doctors and charlatans believe autism is the result of heavy metals from vaccines. Science has proven that vaccines do not cause autism. However, these charlatans push the therapy to rid the child’s body of the minerals.

Chelation therapy comes in many forms. Some “doctors” prescribe pills to strip metals from the body. Other doctors, such as Defeat Autism Now doctors, hook children up to IVs to remove the toxins.

The American Academy of Pediatrics does not recommend chelation therapy as a treatment for autism. The AAP says the practice is dangerous. Removing metals from the body can lead to death.

Every human has various levels of metals in their bodies like aluminum, zinc, and iron. By removing, all the minerals from the body, a person can die. In at least one case, a child died from chelation therapy.

Hyperbaric Oxygen

Hyperbaric Oxygen is high-pressure oxygen delivered inside a secure container. Individuals lay inside a high-pressure capsule and receive high doses of oxygen. The FDA approves the therapy for certain conditions including patients with burns and skin-eating bacteria. However, there is no supporting evidence hyperbaric oxygen improves autism.

Charlatans selling the treatments say that autism is caused by inflammation in the brain.  Due to this inflammation, the ‘providers’ say the neurons within the brain do not work correctly. Companies tell parents that the high-pressure oxygen will reduce inflammation in the brain and gut, improve white blood cell function, and reduce infections in the child.

The companies selling the therapy will often tell parents their child will need at least 40 one hour sessions for a whopping price of $5,000.00. Insurance does not cover the treatment, and many companies suggest parents start GoFundMe accounts to raise money.

Hyperbaric oxygen therapy has many known risks and side-effects. Individuals can suffer oxygen toxicity, hypoglycemia, rupture of the eardrum, blindness, cataracts, bleeding in the sinuses, and permanent damage to the lungs.

Stem Cell Therapy

Charlatans that push stem cell therapy believe autism is caused by inflammation in the brain and the gut. As a result, these quacks think stem cells taken from umbilical cords will reduce inflammation and restore the neurological function of the child.

The FDA approves stem cell therapy for use in patients with certain cancers and blood disorder. However, the FDA does not approve stem-cell therapy for the treatment of autism.

Even though the products are not legal for purchase in the United States, parents can purchase stem-cells from Costa Rica, Panama, China, and India. Products purchased from these areas may not contain blood products or can be contaminated. Additionally, ‘providers’ selling the products may suggest dangerous delivery methods for the stem cells.

Risks associated with stem-cell therapy are tumor growth, infections, and poisoning from contaminated blood products.

Bio-medical and alternative medicine treatments for autism are not proven to work. Anyone pushing these products has financial incentive to lie to parents and patients. Charlatans create fantastic stories about the causes of autism without providing scientific data to support their claims.

If you are concerned about your child with autism, work with your child’s primary pediatrician. Doctors can help by providing referrals for therapy, county services, and equipment to help the child. Occupational, physical, speech, and behavioral therapy can aid the child in gaining skills and learn coping strategies.

Children with autism need a parent that will accept them. Parents need to be patient, loving, and understanding. These children need their parents to advocate for their educational, medical, and community needs. These children do not need a parent that puts them through dangerous and unproven “medical” treatments.

Forcing a child to go through unnecessary bio-medical therapy is not loving or understanding.


When a parent puts their child through any of these therapies, they are abusing their children. These parents trust charlatans that are providing them with a glimmer of hope.  However, there is no hope that any of these therapies will work. Instead, there is a considerable risk to the child’s health. In some cases, children die from unproven methods.

Please do not put your child through these dangerous practices.


*Katie Joy is a blogger and freelance writer. Her work is featured on Upworthy, Huffington Post, Yahoo Parents, Mamamia, Daily Beast, Cafe Stir, Newsweek, Jezebel, and The Daily Mail. She writes articles on parenting, disability advocacy, debunking pseudoscience, atheism, and crimes against women and children.

She co-hosts the YouTube show, “The Smoking Nun,” with Kyle Curtis. The show airs weekly and tackles pseudoscience, current events, and crime stories.

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  • Tawreos

    Sadly, it is not only the charlatans you have to watch out for. My vet offered to give my dog acupuncture treatments for his arthritis. There is too much money to be made from woo in this world to ever be truly safe.

  • Jim Jones

    What happened to music therapy for children with autism? I don’t hear anything about that now.

  • Lucy

    I’m guessing the ABA industry, with their “our treatment methods are the only evidence-based treatment for autism” had a hand there.

    Never mind that you cannot “cure” a neurological condition by training someone to act like they don’t have the condition or like they have less of it – and the latter is kind of iffy, because either you’re autistic or you’re not, and you might be more disabled if you’re an autistic who cannot speak than if you are one who can but that doesn’t make you “more autistic”, it just means you have other disabling autism-related conditions to deal with as well, and besides, the ABA method of training really isn’t all that useful for learning language (speaking of which, even animal researchers know this because operant conditioning for teasing out nonhuman animal language has largely been discontinued).

    But even with these facts in place, the ABA industry has a good PR machine and a way of making their science look better than it really is (helped by lots of fear-mongering), so they would be able to contribute to things like steering people away from music therapy ad other non-ABA treatments.

  • firebubbles310

    They wanted to try woo for my mom’s dog’s seizures. Thankfully it was too expensive and I didn’t have to upset my mom.

  • Phil Rimmer

    Every parent of an autistic child needs to be given a copy of Neurotribes by Steve Silberman, and for that matter every teacher too. Aspie is everywhere. Challenging and rewarding.

    Super abundant cross linking following the explosive neural growth in infants gives rise to the terrible twos, when an information overload leads to a period of distress and tantrums. This “surplus” (41%) is mostly pruned away by late teens but less than half the amount (16%) is cleared in autistic brains and at nine the terrible twos are still nearly at full force.

    If the distress can be managed these brains can be awesome in later life.

    Also a copy of this


  • Erik1986

    I’ve read reputable studies that say acupuncture can have beneficial effects – but not for the reasons that practitioners say – “realigning of “chi,” etc.. It merely can stimulate production of endorphins for temporary relief. I have seen it used on dogs and horses, who obviously don’t “know” anything about placebos, and there was improvement, but it was always temporary. The benefit seems minimal and transient, and there are more beneficial standard medical treatments. I think the acupuncture helps the owners more than the animals, because they feel they are “doing something” to help the animal.

  • David Rice

    I was born autistic. I do not
    need to be *CURED!* I need for stupid shits to stop abusing and
    harassing and oppressing and persecuting me because I act oddly.
    Autistic people die young, on average, and I suspect it’s because vile
    shits who sell “cures” make our lives miserable.

  • Joanne