Autism Spectrum Disorder: Signs, Diagnosis, Treatment And Everything You Need To Know

It is not new to the society to see people with disability, disorders, and diseases. Some of it was acquired due to accidents andlifestyle, but some were genetically passed on to offsprings. It is unlucky for those people who develop these certain disorders from prenatal and postnatal stages, as what we can say, it is not their fault and they don’t deserve it.

Here is one of the disorders acquired through genes and problems encountered by the mother when the child is still in the womb.

Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), or simply and commonly known as Autism, is a neuro-developmental disorder where one displays social communication and interaction challenges, characterized by repetitive abnormal behavior.

The term “spectrum” refers to a broad range of signs and symptoms of Autism. Based on the definitions of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5), ASD covers disorders such as Asperger’s Syndrome, Childhood Disintegrative Disorder, Pervasive Developmental Disorder Not Otherwise Specified (PDD-NOS).

Researchers believe that ASD is acquired and transmitted through genes and caused by some other environmental factors that had disrupted the brain development during the early years.

Signs And Symptoms Of ASD

Toddlers with ASD may behave differently compared to their peers. Here are some of the things observe in children to check if they might have the condition and might need to undergo an expert evaluation.

• Too focused on a certain object
• Rarely makes an eye contact
• Social indifference
• Repetitive behavior, e.g., keeps on clapping, echoes words said to them
• Have trouble expressing their needs
• Short attention span
• Prefers to be alone most of the time
• Have a hard time adapting to change
• Have unusual reactions to sound, smell, taste, look and feel
• Unusual and repetition of language

How To Diagnose ASD

It is hard to identify people with ASD because it takes time and keen observation, unlike other diseases or medical condition that can be confirmed through usual laboratory tests. A physician needs to take note person’s behavior, social interactions, level of intelligence, communication, actions and language before making a diagnosis.

ASD can be detected as early as 18 months old or prior, while diagnosis for those who are at least 2 years old is already considered reliable. The condition affects one out of 68 children, of which males are more likely to have it. ASD is found across different ethnicity, race and socioeconomic group.

Treating ASD

ASD is not curable, instead therapies and behavioral approaches are given to address symptoms. Early detection leads to early intervention therapies that could decrease symptoms.