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Autism Spectrum Disorder - Learn the types & symptoms

September 5, 2018

Autism Spectrum Disorder, or ASD, is a neurological and developmental disorder that starts in early childhood and lasts throughout a person's life.

ASD is present in different forms and in varying levels of severity. Signs typically show up when a child is between two to three years of age, which makes early diagnosis and intervention critical.

ASD affects the ability to communicate verbally, social interactions, and leisure activities.It is also five times more common among boys than among girls.

What causes autism

Research has been on for decades to locate the exact cause . The reasons could be many, and include environmental, biological, and genetic factors.

Types of ASD

There are three main types:

  1. Classic Autism

This is the common type and affects language or communication skill and social interaction. People with this type may also have an intellectual disability.

  1. Asperger Syndrome

This is a milder type that affects social skills and behaviors. However, it does not affect the language skills of a person in a significant way.

  1. Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD-NOS) or Atypical Autism

People with this disorder may show some signs of the previous two types, but not all of them. The signs are mild and may impact social and communication skills, but to a limited extent.

Signs of autism

  1. Lack of response when called by name by the age of 12 months

  2. Unable to point to objects by the age of 14 months.

  3. Avoiding eye contact and preference for isolation.

  4. Inability to understand or relate to feelings and emotions of others.

  5. Difficulty in learning language and communication skills.

  6. Tendency to repeat words.

  7. Feeling upset over small or minor changes.

  8. Unusual reactions to sounds, smells, tastes, or looks.

Parents should remain alert for these signs and consult an expert. This is because early detection and intervention can play a critical role in the child's future. - Samyukta Arun, Autism parent

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