Everything You Need to Know About Autism Spectrum Disorder
by Pathlie Lee Business consultant
If your child or loved one – or even you, yourself – has been diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder, you undoubtedly have some questions. Here are some of the most commonly asked, as well as information you need to know now, as you begin your journey as an ASD family:
What is Autism Spectrum Disorder?
Autism spectrum disorder is a better way of describing autism and related conditions. These include:
● Asperger’s Syndrome
● Rett’s Syndrome
● Childhood Disintegrative Disorder (CDD)
● Pervasive Developmental Disorder Not Otherwise Specified (PDDNOS)
Each of these has its own signs and symptoms, but these disorders all impact the development and social skills. Autism and Asperger’s are typically milder, allowing those who are diagnosed with these conditions to communicate and function normally.
Some variations of ASD, such as Childhood Disintegrative Disorder and Rett’s Syndrome are much more profound. CDD, in particular, leads to complete loss of gross motor skills, communicative abilities, and even the ability to control the bladder and bowels.
The severity of these conditions does vary drastically, even within the same diagnosis. Parents and caregivers should be aware of this discrepancy before trying to address their child or loved one’s condition.
How Can I Identify Autism Spectrum Disorder?
There are many signs and symptoms of autism spectrum disorders. The wide variance of these conditions means it may be hard to pinpoint exactly which disorder a young patient has. However, the most common signs and symptoms include:
● Poor social skills
● Lack of communicative skills or desire to communicate
● Intentional isolation of self from others
● Lack of play in young children
● Upset by minor changes or inconveniences
● Obsessive interests
● Strange reactions to ordinary stimuli
What Causes Autism Spectrum Disorder?
There is no known cause or trigger for autism spectrum disorders. Many people mistakenly believe that certain foods, medications, vaccinations, or exposure to other environmental factors can trigger the condition, but there is no scientific or medical basis for this. The secret is thought to lie in the genetic makeup of each individual patient and scientists are still working on figuring out what prompts its development.
What Treatments Exist for Autism Spectrum Disorder?
Many parents are frustrated to learn that there is no cure for autism. However, there are many approaches to treatment, since the condition affects each patient differently. These can range from drug-free options such as therapy and lifestyle modification to medical intervention. It all depends on the patient’s individual needs.
Your best bet is to get in touch with a center for autism and related disorders. Working with specialists will help you and your child or loved one find the resources you need to live with the spectrum disorder and cope with its symptoms. Oftentimes, a center for autism and related disorders can also put you and your family in touch with community or government resources that exist to help those dealing with autism spectrum disorders.
Autism is a condition that comes with many questions and science has not yet answered all of them. Armed with basic knowledge and patience, though, you and your family can learn to live with autism spectrum disorder – and lead happy, healthy, meaningful lives.
Created on Jan 3rd 2019 10:06. Viewed 41 times.