Autism is a disorder of the nerves in the brain that interferes with the signals sent from the brain to other parts of the body. The disorder is marked by poor communication skills and lack of social interaction. Doctors aren’t sure what causes autism.
Signs of autism begin in babies before they are 12 months old. Most children are diagnosed with autism by age 2 or 3. That’s the age when parents become aware that their toddlers’ communications skills aren’t keeping pace with other toddlers their age.
Autistic children tend to play apart from other kids. They can spend a great deal of time performing repetitive motions like stacking and un-stacking or lining up objects such as in the photo above.
Other behavioral signs include walking on their tiptoes (toe walking), flapping their arms, sitting and spinning, rolling their heads and/or rocking back and forth.
Some autistic children show normal cognitive growth and development from birth until the age of 3 or 4 when they begin to regress, eventually losing their communications skills altogether. Other children who are diagnosed with autism as toddlers grow up to lead normal lives and show no outward signs of the disorder.
Below is a table that shows the early signs of autism in children. Children’s behavior patterns may differ from the chart below.
Management and treatment for autism include behavioral, occupational and speech therapy, and other therapies including applied behaviour analysis (ABA), and structured teaching.
Medications may be prescribed to control the symptoms of autism such as antidepressants for anxiety or depression, and antipsychotic drugs to control aggressive behaviors.
More Info On The Web
Autism – Autism.com