Search This Site


“Oxytocin Hormone Inhalation” Improves Social Learning In People with Aspergers

A recent study published in the “Proceedings of the National Academy of Science” is the first to demonstrate the effects of oxytocin, a hormone that allegedly promotes mother-infant bonding, socialization, trust and cooperation. Researchers stated that Aspies showed dramatic improvement in their social learning ability subsequent to inhalation of this “socialization-eliciting” hormone.

The results of this study influenced several Aspergers specialists to speculate that when usually depleted levels of oxytocin among Aspies are supplemented, it may benefit their social interactive skills.

The study was related to the Aspie’s tendency to avoid eye contact with others. In this study, 13 participants with Aspergers - and a control group - were quizzed about photos of human faces. Such images normally prompt Aspergers subjects to avert their gaze, especially avoiding looking at the eyes. For 90 minutes after inhaling oxytocin, those subjects were more willing to study the photos, including the eyes. They were also better able to tell whether they were being ignored in a computerized ball-tossing game. Aspies would usually not pick up on such differential treatment.

Researchers also stated that the oxytocin's effect in the second test was especially important because it prompted subjects to interact with others and learn from others' feedback. Two related studies in Aspergers adults found that oxytocin decreased repetitive behaviors and improved interpretation of emotions.

Oxytocin is a peptide of nine amino acids, which evokes feelings of contentment, reductions in anxiety, and feelings of calmness and security. Many studies have already shown a correlation of oxytocin with human bonding, increases in trust, and decreases in fear. One study confirmed that there was a positive correlation between oxytocin plasma levels and an anxiety scale measuring adult romantic attachment. This suggests that oxytocin may be important for the inhibition of brain regions that are associated with behavioral control, fear, and anxiety.


Oxytocin may play a role in Aspergers and may be an effective treatment for Asperger's repetitive and affiliative behaviors. Intranasal administration of oxytocin may increase emotion recognition in children as young as 12 who are diagnosed with autism spectrum disorders.

While this research suggests some promise, further clinical trials of oxytocin are required to demonstrate potential benefit and side effects in the treatment of Aspergers. As such, researchers do not recommend use of oxytocin as a treatment outside of clinical trials.

The Aspergers Comprehensive Handbook


timetoknow said...

how long after usage do the effects show up in the child. does it act on accumulation or does it take affect within the hour or so?

timetoknow said...

I have a 13 year old daughter, and I am wondering about the experience of others who have used it. What does the study reveal to be the down time from administering the inhaler to the seeing the effects in the aspergers child? Is oxytocin cumulative or does it leave the system quickly. Also, are there any addictive properties.

My child has been rejected by his peers, ridiculed and bullied !!!

Social rejection has devastating effects in many areas of functioning. Because the ASD child tends to internalize how others treat him, rejection damages self-esteem and often causes anxiety and depression. As the child feels worse about himself and becomes more anxious and depressed – he performs worse, socially and intellectually.

Click here to read the full article…

How to Prevent Meltdowns in Children on the Spectrum

Meltdowns are not a pretty sight. They are somewhat like overblown temper tantrums, but unlike tantrums, meltdowns can last anywhere from ten minutes to over an hour. When it starts, the Asperger's or HFA child is totally out-of-control. When it ends, both you and your child are totally exhausted. But... don’t breathe a sigh of relief yet. At the least provocation, for the remainder of that day -- and sometimes into the next - the meltdown can return in full force.

Click here for the full article...

Parenting Defiant Teens on the Spectrum

Although Aspergers [high-functioning autism] is at the milder end of the autism spectrum, the challenges parents face when disciplining a teenager on the spectrum are more difficult than they would be with an average teen. Complicated by defiant behavior, the teen is at risk for even greater difficulties on multiple levels – unless the parents’ disciplinary techniques are tailored to their child's special needs.

Click here to read the full article…

Older Teens and Young Adult Children with ASD Still Living At Home

Your older teenager or young “adult child” isn’t sure what to do, and he is asking you for money every few days. How do you cut the purse strings and teach him to be independent? Parents of teens with ASD face many problems that other parents do not. Time is running out for teaching their adolescent how to become an independent adult. As one mother put it, "There's so little time, yet so much left to do."

Click here to read the full article…

Parenting Children and Teens with High-Functioning Autism

Two traits often found in kids with High-Functioning Autism are “mind-blindness” (i.e., the inability to predict the beliefs and intentions of others) and “alexithymia” (i.e., the inability to identify and interpret emotional signals in others). These two traits reduce the youngster’s ability to empathize with peers. As a result, he or she may be perceived by adults and other children as selfish, insensitive and uncaring.

Click here
to read the full article...

Highly Effective Research-Based Parenting Strategies for Children with Asperger's and HFA

Become an expert in helping your child cope with his or her “out-of-control” emotions, inability to make and keep friends, stress, anger, thinking errors, and resistance to change.

Click here for the full article...