Symptoms of Autism

Core symptoms The severity of symptoms varies greatly, but all people with autismhave some core symptoms in the areas of: Social interactions andrelationships. Symptoms may include: Significant problems developing nonverbal communication skills, such as eye-to-eyegazing, facial expressions, and body posture. Failure to establish friendships with children the same age. Lack of interest in sharing enjoyment, interests, or achievements…

How Autism is Diagnosed

Although there are many concerns about labeling a young child with an autism spectrum disorder, the earlier the diagnosis of autism is made, the earlier needed interventions can begin. Evidence over the last 15 years indicates that intensive early intervention in optimal educational settings for at least 2 years during the preschool years results in improved…

Preventing Autism in Pregnancy: Is it Possible?

As soon as the pregnancy test comes back positive, parents will do anything to protect their baby-to-be. That includes doing what they can to lower their child’s risk for autism spectrum disorders (ASD), which affect 1 in 68 children. Some research says this can start before birth. One study in the New England Journal of Medicine found differences in the…

How tech can help children with autism

FutureLearn and the University of Bath have announced a partnership with the launch of a new course.  The course, Smart-ASD: Matching autistic people with technology resources is open for enrolment and explores how children with autism can be supported by digital resources and technology. According to the National Autistic Society, autism is much more common than many…

The Real Reasons Autism Rates Are Up in the U.S.

The prevalence of autism in the United States has risen steadily since researchers first began tracking it in 2000. The rise in the rate has sparked fears of an autism ‘epidemic.’ But experts say the bulk of the increase stems from a growing awareness of autism and changes to the condition’s diagnostic criteria. Here’s how researchers track…

The Autism Debate Goes On

A new study suggests older mothers are more likely to have a child with autism. Previous research found that risk of autism increased with the age of the father. According to this new study, published in the February issue of the journal Autism Research, every five-year increase in a mother’s age raised her risk of…

Pokémon Go used in classrooms to help autistic children

Pupils at a school in Australia are being actively encouraged to use Pokémon Go in the classroom, after research showed the game could help rather than hinder their studies. Craig Smith, an academic specialising in Autism research, found that by allowing his pupils to use the augmented reality game in and out of the classroom,…

An Oscar-Nominated Film Inspires a New Approach to Autism

Dinosaurs, Star Wars, train schedules, Disney princesses, maps, LEGO—subjects such as these can become all-consuming passions for children on the autism spectrum. What therapists and educators often call “circumscribed” or “restricted” interests (or, more generously, “special” interests) make up a characteristic symptom of autism spectrum disorder (ASD). The current edition of psychiatry’s Diagnostic and Statistical…

My Son Has the Kind of Autism No One Talks About

Like most parents of children with autism, I have been reading about the family in California who is being sued by several families in their neighborhood. The lawsuit contends that their child is a public nuisance because of his behaviors that his parents failed to fix. One of the plaintiffs in this case stated “This…

My Advice for Those with Autism: Don’t Be Afraid of Who You Are

This guest post is by David Powell, a young adult on the spectrum who attends Grand Valley State University. About six months ago now I wrote a previous blog called “Understand Me.” The purpose of my first writing was to provide closure to those who thought of speaking about their autism, but something was in there way…