Objective: To observe the effects of penetrating technique of scalp acupuncture on emotion, sleep and function development in children of autism spectrum disorder.
Methods: A total of 60 autism spectrum disorder children aged 3 to 6 years were randomized in a control group (music education rehabilitation,n=30) and an observation group (penetrating technique of scalp acupuncture + music education rehabilitation,n=30). In the two groups, the treatment for 3 months was as 1 course, and 2 courses of treatment were required. Before and after treatment, the changes were observed in childhood autism rating scale (CARS), emotion regulation subscale (ER), children’s sleep habits questionnaire (CSHQ) and children autism and psycho-educational profile for autistic and developmentally disabled children (C-PEP-3), separately.
Results: Compared with the scores before treatment, CARS score, the score of each subscale of CSHQ, e.g. bedtime resistance, sleep onset delay, irregular sleep duration, sleep anxiety, parasomnias and daytime sleepiness as well as the total score of CSHQ were all reduced in children of two groups (P<0.05); and the score of ER and C-PEP-3 were all increased (P<0.05) after 6 months’ treatment. Compared with the control group, ER score was increased in 3 and 6 months after treatment (P<0.05), CARS score was reduced (P<0.05) and C-PEP-3 score was increased obviously (P<0.05) 6 months after treatment in the observation group; but the scores of the subscale for night waking and sleep disordered breathing did not changed noticeably (P > 0.05).
Conclusion: Penetrating technique of scalp acupuncture improves the emotion and sleep disorder and promotes the function development in autism spectrum disorder children.