Autism ​spectrum ​disorders ​(ASD) ​can ​vary ​in ​the severity ​of ​symptoms, ​age ​of onset, ​and ​the ​presence ​of ​various ​features ​such ​as ​language ​and ​intellectual ability. ​The ​manifestations ​of ​ASD ​can ​differ ​considerably ​across ​individuals. Even ​though ​there ​are ​strong ​and ​consistent ​commonalities, ​especially ​in social ​deficits, ​there ​is ​no ​single ​behavior ​that ​is ​always ​present ​in ​every individual ​with ​ASD ​and ​no ​behavior ​that ​would ​automatically ​exclude ​an individual ​from ​the diagnosis ​of ​ASD. ​


● In 2018, the CDC determined that approximately 1 in 59 children are diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). 
● Boys are four times more likely to be diagnosed with autism than girls (1 in 37 boys and 1 in 151 girls)
● Autism affects all ethnic and socioeconomic groups. 
● Although most diagnoses occur after age 4, autism can be diagnosed as early as 2 years of age. 
● Although there isn't a known cause for autism, research indicates that genetics are involved in a vast majority of cases diagnosed.

*SOURCE: For more information visit Autism Speaks at



Individuals ​with ​ASD ​interact ​with ​others ​differently: ​

● They ​often ​appear ​to have difficulty ​understanding ​and ​expressing ​emotion ​and ​may ​express
attachment ​in ​a ​different ​manner.
● Lack ​of ​language ​development ​and ​rely ​upon ​other ​methods ​of communicating ​such ​as ​pointing ​to pictures ​or ​using ​a ​tablet computer ​with ​special ​language ​applications.
● Echolalia, ​(the ​repeating ​of ​words ​or ​phrases ​over ​and ​over).
● Difficulty ​understanding ​the ​nonverbal ​aspect ​of ​languages ​such ​as social ​cues, ​body ​language ​and vocal ​qualities ​(pitch, ​tone​, and volume).
● Great ​need ​for ​"sameness" ​which ​can ​make ​them ​upset ​if ​objects ​in their ​environment ​or ​time schedules ​change.
● Difficulty ​"playing" ​with ​toys ​in ​the ​same ​manner ​as ​their ​peers ​and may ​become ​fixated ​on ​specific ​objects.
● Different ​reactions ​to ​sensory ​stimuli ​seeing, ​hearing, ​feeling ​or tasting ​things ​with ​more ​or ​less intensity ​than ​others.
● Different ​rates ​of ​development ​especially ​in ​the ​areas ​of communication, ​social ​and ​cognitive ​skills. ​In contrast, ​motor development ​may ​occur ​at ​a ​typical ​rate.


Sometimes ​skills ​will ​appear ​in ​children ​with ASD ​at ​the ​expected ​rate ​or time ​and ​then ​disappear. ​A ​child/adolescent ​with ​autism ​may ​not ​exhibit all of ​these ​symptoms, ​but ​it ​is ​important ​to ​look ​out ​for ​them.



● Get ​a ​diagnosis. ​If ​you're ​concerned, ​see ​a ​doctor ​who's ​familiar ​with ASD. ​Don't ​assume ​the ​child ​will    catch ​up. The ​American ​Academy ​of Pediatrics ​offers ​an ​online ​pediatrician ​referral ​service, ​searchable by ​specialty ​and ​location.
● Get ​help. ​Education, ​intervention ​and ​speech ​therapy ​are ​often critical.
● Know ​your ​rights. ​Children ​with ​autism ​can ​be ​eligible ​for ​early intervention ​and ​special ​education ​services ​that ​are ​free ​starting ​at age ​3. ​Your ​health ​insurance ​may ​also ​include ​coverage ​for ​the medical ​services ​your ​child ​needs.