What is Autism?
Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is a range of complex neurodevelopment disorders caused by abnormalities in the brain. The autism/ASD spectrum is very broad.
The variety of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) diagnoses vary in the severity of the individual symptoms. It varies from classical autism where the child has a delay of speech development to a milder form of autism where the child has no delay in speech development as in the case of Asperger Syndrome and pervasive developmental disorder not otherwise specified (PDD-NOS).
Autism Spectrum Disorder tends to be more common in boys than in girls.
Autism Spectrum Disorder is basically characterized by 3 areas of abnormalities. They are:
- Social interaction impairments
- Communication difficulties
- Repetitive and Stereotyped patterns of behavior
What causes Autism Spectrum Disorder?
Till date, scientists aren’t certain about what exactly causes Autism Spectrum Disorder. However, researchers have identified that Autism has a strong genetic basis. Controversies surround other proposed environmental causes, such as heavy metals, pesticides or childhood vaccines. The vaccine hypotheses are biologically implausible and have been dis-proven in scientific studies.
While a high percentage of Autism Spectrum Disorder is idiopathic (no medical causes), ASD can also be secondary to a medical condition. Secondary ASD refers to cases associated with a medical condition or genetic abnormality.
Conditions associated with Autism Spectrum Disorder include:
- Fragile X syndrome
- Soto syndrome
- Tuberous Sclerosis
- Mitochondrial disorder
- Other chromosomal abnormalities
Autism can coexist with other medical conditions or learning difficulties. Some of the more common coexisting conditions include:
- Mental retardation
- Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivities Disorder
- Obsessive-compulsive disorder
- Depression secondary to autism
- Tourette Syndrome
Prognosis in a child with Autism Spectrum Disorder depends on a variety of outcomes such as communication skills, cognitive skills, self-care skills, and independent living skills.
Studies suggested that a lack of early joint attention and imitation as well as failure to develop functional speech by 5 years of age were predictive of poor outcomes.
How can Therapy Alliance SG help?
If you suspect your child is showing one or more of the above-mentioned 3 areas of abnormalities, do not hesitate to contact us for a no-obligation discussion on your child’s condition with our therapist/specialist before deciding to perform an Autism Test for a complete analysis of your child.
Email us any inquiries and we will be most glad to offer our best advice.