- An American doctor, Leo Kanner, first identified autism in 1943. It is often referred to as Autistic Spectrum Disorder, or ASD
- 1- 5 in every 100 are affected with ASD – 50% may also have severe learning difficulties – 20% may have above average intelligence.
- Boys are 3 times more likely to be affected than girls.
- ASD may run in families, siblings of a child with ASD are 75% more likely to develop it.
- Difficulties in expressing themselves can lead to confusion, anxiety and frustration.
- Getting a diagnosis for a child with ASD is needed to get access the right support and treatment.
- ASD is a lifelong condition that affects how a person communicates with, and relates to, other people; it also affects how they make sense of the world around them.
- The characteristics of ASD affect the individual differently, but usually include social interaction / social communication / social imagination.
- ASD may have sensory difficulties, so they may be over sensitive with touch, such as certain materials, light levels or sound, which may lead to problems with movement, they may appear clumsy or have unusual ways of walking.
- May have difficulties with verbal or non – verbal skills, may repeat words or repeat what is said to them. This is known as echolalia.
- Children with ASD may have limited imaginative play-play the same games over and over or play with games designed for younger children.
- They may also get upset if their daily routines are interrupted, show behaviours-such as hand flapping or spinning. Alternatively, they may develop obsessions with specific objects, lists, timetables or routines.
“It seems that for success in science and art a dash of autism is essential.” Hans Asperger
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