What is Autism

What is Autism

Autism, or Autism Spectrum Disorder, is a known brain development condition that manifests itself as difficulty in communicating or socializing with others and can affect an individual and their family throughout their life. It can be characterized through many facets, some of which may include:
  • Lack of desire to interact with other people
  • Display of erratic behaviour that can seem hostile towards others
  • Most commonly avoidance of eye contact when spoken to
  • Display repetitive patterns of behaviour
Autism may have different severity levels of impact or strength, ranging from mild to severe Autism, and may impact the suffering person in many different ways, hence the terminology “Spectrum”.

Indeed, the impact of Autism may range from a mild and controllable form that can be dealt with using minimal developmental training, to cases of Autism that may at some point lead the sufferer to health complications such as depression, self-isolation or heart problems and may voluntarily lead to more severe consequences such as suicide. Therefore, with the early identification of any indicative Autism, it is highly recommended to seek medical help to tackle this condition.

The cause of Autism remains to be unclear as to what exactly may cause it. However, common medical practice and researches suggest that genetics and environment tend to play a part in its cause. It is worthy to note that males are four times more likely to be autistic than females.

No two Autism cases are the same. Generally, however, sufferers have issues with social interaction and communication and display certain repetitive patterns of behaviour.

Origins

The word “Autism” was first used in 1911 by Swiss psychiatrist Eugen Bleuler while observing patients thought to be schizophrenic. The word itself is derived from the Greek word “autos”, which literally means “self”. It describes conditions in which a person is removed from social interaction. In other words, he becomes an “isolated self.”

Types of Autism

Over time, psychiatrists have developed a systematic way of describing autism and related conditions. All of these conditions are placed within a group of conditions called Autism Spectrum Disorders. Depending on how severe symptoms are, they are classified under level 1, 2 or 3.

Did you know?

  • Autism affects
    1 in 59
    children
  • 40%
    of children with autism do not speak
  • Boys are four times more likely to have autism than girls

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Diagnosis

Autism can be a very difficult condition to diagnose simply because it does not rely on blood tests or the like. However, there can be a number of developmental tests can be recommended and extensive observations that can assist medical specialists in properly diagnosing the condition. The diagnostic practices for Autism include observations on the child’s behaviour and development to make that diagnosis.