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Can Fluorescent Flicker Bother People Suffering From Autism?

People suffering from Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) can be very sensitive to a few issues. The issues can be anything like color, lights, new places or new people. Researches conducted have suggested that people suffering from ASD experience a certain effect due to common fluorescent flicker. So, can fluorescent flicker bother people suffering from autism severely?

Effect of Fluorescent Flicker: A report published by the SCENIHR (Scientific Committee on Emerging and Newly Identified health Risks) has concluded that people who suffer from ASD have felt deleterious effects due to fluorescent lighting.

  • Fluorescent lighting which most of us have in our homes actually cause a flicker. This flicker is usually not noticed by many normal people and does not affect them in any way.
  • But, that flicker is actually noticed by people suffering from ASD. Such fluorescent flickers disturb the concentration of ASD sufferers and make them irritated.
  • In a few cases, the flickering also causes severe headaches in such people. Autistic sufferers might also perceive the flicker as a small strobe.

Reducing Fluorescent Flicker: Though studies have been able to reveal the effects of such flicker, there is no proper research that suggests alternatives to such lighting. A few household techniques could be useful to either reduce or eliminate the flickers.

  • Using 3 phase current is a very good option to cancel any flickering effects caused by fluorescent lamps. Many households would only have a single phase due to the high costing three phase. It is better to consult your landlord and get a three phase electricity if you have people suffering from ASD in your household.
  • Also, covering the lamps with translucent plastic can be very helpful in reducing the flickers. Any plastic that is either white or light in color can be useful in canceling out the flicker.

Can fluorescent flicker bother people suffering from autism? Researchers reveal the answer to be yes and unfortunately this is where most researches stop and as of now there are no alternatives to this effect.

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