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Are you a parent with a child with Autism?
Autism is a complex neuro-developmental disorder with biological roots thought to be present at birth which continues through adulthood.
Autism is characterised by language delays or other communication problems, poor or limited social skills and repetitive, rigid and other unusual behaviours.
Autism refers to a spectrum of disorders, with a wide range of symptoms that vary from mild to severe.
Once considered a rare disorders, today autism is estimated to affect as many as 1 in 150 children.
A significant number of symptoms of autism are present by 18 months of age, or even earlier. However, children are typically not diagnosed until 3 to 4 years of age or later.
Research indicates that early identification and intervention can result in significant positive outcomes for many children with autism.
By 4 Months of Age
Does not make eye contact or makes little eye contact.
Does not seem interested in other people.
Does not react by looking at people when they are making social sounds such as humming or clapping.
Does not show as much interest in people as they do towards objects.
Does not have a social smile.
Does not show interest in watching other people's faces.
By 12 Months of Age
Does not combine eye contact with smiling.
Does not babble.
Does not look at objects that other person is looking at.
Does not try to engaged other people in what s/he is looking at or doing.
Does not follow a person's eye contact when the person points out an object and says "look at the airplane", etc.
Does not engage in back and fourth gestures (sharing or showing toys).
Does not respond when name is called.
Does not point the index finger.
Does not show a caring or concerned reaction to other people crying.
Does not use gestures such as waving hi or bye.
By 24 Months of Age
Does not point to share interests with others, such as pointing to an airplane, etc.
Does not imitate activities of others such as pretend play activities.
Does not develop pretend or make believe play.
Does not use single words by 16 months; no two words spontaneous phrases ("go car" or "look doggie").
Other Developmental Skills
May develop language and or social skills normally and then lose some or all of these skills.
Has repetitive body movements (hand flapping and spinning).
Fixates upon a single object such as a spoon or a book.
Can't tolerate change in routine environment such as a replacement for a lost toy.
Has over-sensitivity to texture, lights and/or sounds.
Has delayed motor skills (late walking, riding a tricycle or learning to jump).
Prefers to play alone or does not interact with peers as expected, such as asking for friends to come over, playing together or taking turns.
Lines items up or puts things in order repeatedly.
Has excessive tantrums and is difficult to console.
Walks on tiptoes.
May not enjoy cuddling or being touched unless it is on own terms.
Tone of voice does not always reflect emotions.
Uses formal speech sounding like a "little professor".
Dominates conversations and doesn't engage in dialogue.
Unique and immature sense of humor.
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