Difficulty identifying emotions linked to poor mental health in autistic people

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Autistic people who have trouble identifying their emotions, a condition known as alexithymia, are likely to have anxiety, depression and problems with social communication, according to a new study1. Alexithymia may also contribute to worsening mental health: People with severe alexithymia are more likely than those without to develop anxiety over time.

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Autism behind bars

Prisons are often ill-equipped to handle autistic inmates, who are at risk for mental health problems and abuse.

by Peter Hess

Andrew Beasley was quickly losing his cool. It was October 2015, and he was about two years into his sentence at the Federal Correctional Institution, Fort Dix in New Jersey.

Beasley, then 32, had left his MP3 player on a charging station in the facility’s computer room, but when he went to retrieve it, it was gone. He thought he knew who had it and frantically started to look for the man.

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Some autistic people report poor quality of life, but many do not

By Peter Hess

Autistic people vary widely in their quality of life, a new study shows1. Some report shortcomings in their physical health and school achievement, among other areas, but many do not.

To help autistic people improve their well-being and satisfaction with life, researchers need a better understanding of what matters to individuals, says lead researcher Eva Loth, senior lecturer in forensic and neurodevelopmental sciences at King’s College London in the United Kingdom.

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