skip to Main Content

Autism – Make Sure You Know the Warning Signs

Autism is one of the most prevalent childhood diseases today and can be found in varying forms. As with any disease, early detection can go a long way to help people who are inflicted. Boys are four times more likely to be diagnosed as autistic than girls. The disease affects the development of the brain especially with communication skills, social interaction and cognitive function. Additionally, those who have been diagnosed as autistic have difficulty interacting with others and can be oftentimes staring off in space for long periods of time.

Currently, there is no cure for autism, but early detection can greatly improve someone’s life. The National Institute of Child Health and Human Development has pointed to five behaviors that are signs that a child should be evaluated by a doctor for possibly having autism – 1. If your baby does not coo or babble by 12 months of age; 2. Does not gesture by 12 months of age; 3 Does not say single words by 16 months of age; 4. Does not say two-word phrases by 24 months of age on his/her own; and 5. Has any loss of any language or social skill at any age. It is important to know the behaviors to watch for because early therapy will allow your child to live a relatively normal life.

When thinking of autism many people think of the movie “Rain Man,” but it’s important to note that the man represented in that movie was a worst-case scenario. Many people who have autism today are able to live a normal life. They go to school, then onto college and are able to enter the job market. The person shown in “Rain Man” has one of the most severe forms of autism. At one time, that was the only type of autism that was being diagnosed, but today doctors realize that the disease exists in varying forms. Also, through new treatment and therapy routines, young children with autism can learn to do many things with special help to allow them to lead a “normal” life.

It’s very important that if you suspect something is wrong with your child, to take them to your pediatrician immediately. Don’t think it is a phase and your child will grow out it. The sooner your child is diagnosed, the more help that can be given to your child. Your physician will refer you to a developmental specialist who will help actually diagnose your child and come up with a treatment plan. They will observe your child to see how he/she plays with toys, interacts with people and how they communicate. The specialist would also watch to see how your child interacts with you and will also interview you to find out what is happening at home, along with taking a full medical history. If they do in fact have autism, they will help you develop a plan of learning to help your child live and function in today’s world. Studies have shown that the younger children are worked with, the better the chance to lessen the effects of the disease.

Brent McNutt enjoys networking with healthcare professionals online. He also likes talking about Landau Scrubs and Landau Shoes and also likes writing articles about various topics.

Back To Top