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What is Autism Spectrum Disorder?

Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is a neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by persistent challenges in social interaction, communication, and restricted and repetitive patterns of behavior, interests, or activities. ASD is a spectrum disorder, which means that it encompasses a wide range of symptoms and levels of severity.

Signs of Autism Spectrum Disorder

Individuals with ASD may have difficulties in social interaction, such as making and maintaining eye contact, understanding and responding to social cues and nonverbal communication, and developing and maintaining relationships. They may also have challenges in communication, including delayed language development, difficulty initiating or sustaining conversations, and repetitive or unusual use of language.

In addition to social and communication difficulties, individuals with ASD often exhibit repetitive behaviors or intense interests. These behaviors may include repetitive movements (such as rocking or hand flapping), insistence on sameness or routines, highly focused or fixated interests, and sensory sensitivities (e.g., being overly sensitive or under-responsive to certain sounds, textures, or lights).

ASD typically becomes apparent in early childhood, and the symptoms can vary widely from person to person. Some individuals with ASD may have exceptional abilities in certain areas, such as mathematics, music, or visual arts, while others may have intellectual disabilities or additional mental health challenges.

What Causes Autism Spectrum Disorder?

The exact causes of ASD are still not fully understood, but research suggests that a combination of genetic and environmental factors may contribute to its development. Early intervention, such as behavioral and educational therapies, can significantly improve outcomes for individuals with ASD by helping them develop communication and social skills, manage challenging behaviors, and adapt to their environment.

If you suspect that your child may have Autism Spectrum Disorder contact a specialist like today.