Autism Spectrum Disorder

ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder) is a developmental disorder that is used to describe three disorders previously separate disorders that are now viewed in a spectrum: Autism, Asperger’s Syndrome, and Childhood Disintegrative Disorder. Children with ASD can have difficulties emotional and social development leading to problems in communication, developing relationships, and having unusual interests.

Symptoms and Diagnosis

Although no exact cause of ASD is identified, causes are believed to be genetic and environmental such as DNA illnesses and viral infections. It is important to note that currently, there is no proven link between ASD and vaccination. Symptoms can include problems in social communication and patterns of behavior. Social communication problems can include failure to respond to name, resist signs of affection, poor eye contact, delayed speech, poor speech, monotone or speech with an abnormal tone, and lack of expressing emotion. Problems in patterns of behavior can include: performing repetitive movements, trouble with changes in routines, being on the move constantly, problems with coordination, odd food choices, and sensitivity to light, touch or sound.

Treatment

There is no cure for Autism, but a combination of therapies with medication when needed can ease difficulties faced. Therapy can include methods such as behavior, educational, and family therapies. Medication can help with symptoms such as: irritability, aggression, hyperactivity, attention deficit, anxiety, and depression.