Autism is a developmental disability that often affects how people communicate, socialize, comprehend information, or behave. And while there is no one singular factor that causes autism, symptoms of this spectrum disorder can range from mild to very severe. Autism is typically characterized by repetitive behaviors but encompasses a variety of other developmental disorders which is why you often hear it referred to as “being on the spectrum.”
Autism usually presents within the first few months of your child’s life. However, in some cases, children may develop normally for the first few years before they begin to show symptoms. Studies show that the majority of parents notice the symptoms of autism within the first twelve months of their child’s life.
Every parent wants their child to be happy and healthy. While raising a child on the spectrum can be challenging, it is manageable. Some children may experience a reduction in symptoms as they grow and learn to recognize their own behaviors, ticks, and triggers.
It’s important to understand that the autism spectrum encompasses several different disorders, hence the term spectrum. Sometimes you hear people ask “How autistic?” While someone can’t just be “a little autistic,” there are varying degrees of autism that are higher or lower functioning depending on the severity of the symptoms.
Because autism is part of a spectrum of disorders, the symptoms can vary wildly. It is important to note that this list is not all-inclusive.
To get a clear diagnosis, it’s important to regularly schedule well-child visits with your pediatrician. Your provider can help you monitor your child’s development and make recommendations based on various milestones and other factors.
Autism is such a unique disorder with a wide variety of factors. Each case is unique. That’s why we recommend scheduling an appointment with us to determine which treatment is right for your child. Our Memphis pediatricians typically recommend a combination of therapies and medications to help your little ones live their best lives. Schedule an appointment today and learn more.