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April is National Autism Awareness Month

April is National Autism Awareness Month

March 31, 2016

In April of 1970, the National Autism Society declared April as National Autism Awareness month in an effort to promote Autism awareness around the world. Autism is a spectrum disorder that affects about 1% of the world population. It has become the fastest growing lifelong developmental disability, affecting 1 in every 110 children in the United States. Overall, there are more than 3.5 million Americans currently living with an autism spectrum disorder. In fact, it has become so widespread, that there is a good probability that you are connected to someone who is affected by this disability.

Autism Photo

Autism can be present in a child as early as birth, or it can form within the first three years of childhood. People with Autism generally have problems interacting and communicating with others, but not all symptoms are the same. While some will have no interest in communicating, others may make offensive comments without realizing it. Physical contact, such as hugging, and understanding other people’s feelings, are often difficult for a person with Autism to process as well. Additionally, people with autism may habitually repeat the same action or behavior many times, and any changes within their environment can negatively disrupt them. Those are just a few of the many characteristics associated with Autism.

Unfortunately, there is no known single cause for Autism, but the theory is that it is caused by abnormalities in the way the brain functions and is structured. It can also be genetically linked. Regardless of the cause, raising awareness for Autism is extremely important because although there is no known cure for Autism, early diagnosis can help to improve learning, communication, and social skills over time through behavioral treatments, therapy, and early intervention programs. There are millions of individuals worldwide who are undiagnosed and misunderstood, and they deserve to be helped.

Luckily, many people diagnosed with Autism go on to live independent and fulfilling lives. With increasing awareness, more support systems, and intervention programs available, those affected by Autism have the opportunity to work productively and enjoy life the way everyone should.

To learn more about Autism and how you can help spread awareness, visit https://www.autismspeaks.org/.