Did you know autism spectrum disorder (ASD) now affects 1 in 59 children in the United States? It can cause varying degrees of social deficits, language impairment and repetitive behaviors.
Since early intervention is key to treatment, the Fay J. Linder Center for Autism and Developmental Disabilities would like to help parents learn how to recognize the signs and symptoms of autism.
According to the National Institute of Mental Health, “Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a developmental disorder that affects communication and behavior. Although autism can be diagnosed at any age, it is said to be a ‘developmental disorder’ because symptoms generally appear in the first two years of life.”
The symptoms of autism, like communication difficulties, limited interests and repetitive behaviors, can hurt a person’s ability to function properly in school, work and other areas of life.
Due to wide variations in the type and severity of symptoms, autism is known as a “spectrum” disorder.
Autism is generally a lifelong disorder, but treatments and services can help improve an individual’s symptoms and their ability to function.
Children who have autism spectrum disorder may exhibit some but not necessarily all of these difficulties with socialization and restrictive/repetitive behaviors.
Although a singular known cause of autism spectrum disorder has yet to be found, scientists have found several key risk factors.
A diagnosis of autism can usually be reliably made by the age of two. Doctors are able to pinpoint the disorder by examining a child’s behavior and development. It is crucial that parents who recognize potential signs and symptoms of autism in their child ask for a professional assessment as soon as possible. The earlier a diagnosis is made, the earlier treatment can begin.
The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that all children be screened for autism at their 18- and 24-month well child visits. Contact the Fay J. Linder Center for Autism & Developmental Disabilities today to sign your child up for an evaluation.