Autism is characterized by impaired social skills and restricted, repetitive behavior. Severe autism results in an inability to interact socially with other people.The brain disorder is usually diagnosed in early childhood before the child is three. The number of children diagnosed with Autism has risen dramatically in the last twenty years. It is not clear whether the rise results from a change in diagnostic measures or from genetic and environmental factors. Some proposed causes are birth defects, mutations, childhood vaccines, television viewing in infancy. However, these are just theories and there is really no clear scientific evidence as to the cause.
Today many infants and toddlers are being diagnosed with Autism. Pediatricians know the signs and look for them in these young children. The earlier it is diagnosed the earlier one can begin to work on cognitive, social and motor impairments. Early intervention is key to overcoming many obstacles that an autistic child could experience in later years. Trained professionals work with these children in areas that need improvement. Some come to the home and work with the child on a one to one basis or in a school. Often these individuals can include teachers, speech therapsts, physical and occupational therapists and aids.
I have worked with autistic students. The spectrum is really wide with some studnts being able to attend regular class while others need to stick to life skills training. Some children with autism are behavioral but not all are. While there really is no cure with training some can lead fairly normal lives. This is dependant on the student’s cognitive ability. There are some famous people with Autism. You may be surprised to learn that Darryl Hannah, Steven Spielberg, and Dan Akroyd have claimed to have Autism!