What is Autism?


Autism is a group of complex disorders affecting brain development, usually characterized by different difficulties in social interaction, nonverbal and verbal communication, and repetitive behaviors. There are different types of autism, but they are all merged into one category known as the Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). The condition is usually associated with difficulties in coordination of movement, intellectual disability, and attention and physical health problems, including gastrointestinal disturbances and sleep. However, despite the difficulties experienced, some people with ASD usually excel in art, visual skills, math, and music. ASD is usually related to the very early stage of brain development; hence, it is difficult to diagnose autism at an early stage since visible signs and symptoms start to appear from the age of two to three years. Therefore, to understand the autistic disorder, it is imperative to discuss its causes, management, and the steps to take if one is diagnosed.

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Causes of Autism

A few years back, the causes of autism were not known. However, after research, it has been discovered that there are different factor that causes Autism, including various changes in gene mutations. Scientists have concluded that these small changes are enough to cause autism (Autism Speaks, 2016). In essence, most of the autism disorders are caused by a combination of autism risk genes and environmental factors that influence early development of the brain.

Management of Autism

Currently, there is no cure for autism since the conditions have various manifestations, making it complex to treat. Individuals with the condition exhibit different types of disorders; hence, a personalized treatment is encouraged to cater to diverse needs. The steps taken range from behavioral and educational programs that work towards the improvement of the children with autism by lessening the difficulties associated with the condition (Autism Speaks, 2016). Some of the interventions may take long hours of rigorous care, while others may involve a short therapy depending on the severity.

Who to Contact in Case of Autism

Whenever there is a suspicion of autism, it is heartbreaking for some parents, while it is a relief for others. However, when a child is suspected to have the disorder, it is advisable to seek a diagnosis. Indeed, it is prudent to pay a visit to a pediatrician who will examine the suspected child and advise on the best way to handle the case if it is confirmed. The findings will enable the patient to access the required support for the child (Rosenblatt et.al, 2013). Thus, it is important to take a child for a checkup whenever they are suspected of having the autism to allow early intervention and assistance.

From the discussion, I have learned that Autism is a condition affecting a person’s brain, especially the young children. The condition is usually associated with various disabilities such a motion and intellectual capacity. However, the kids that are diagnosed with autism usually excel in various fields, including music, art, and in math. I have also realized that autism has no single cause since this condition affects everyone differently. However, scientists have associated the disorder with genetic mutation as well as environmental factors. Additionally, due to the complexity of the illness, it is difficult to have a universal treatment plan. Therefore, the management of the conditions should be tailored according to the needs of the patients. Lastly, it is important to have early diagnosis immediately a child is suspected to have autism. In this case, the pediatrician will indicate the best course of action.

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Autism Speaks. (2016). What is Autism? Retrieved from: https://www.autismspeaks.org/what-autism

Rosenblatt Alan, Paul Carbone, Winnie Scherer, & American Academy of Pediatrics. (2013). Autism spectrum disorders: What every parent needs to know. Elk Grove Village, Illinois : American Academy of Pediatrics.

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