Signs of Autism in Infants
WHAT DOES AUTISM LOOK LIKE AT 14 MONTHS?
Early intervention is critical. READ NOW!
Notice how he doesn't respond to his name, acts "Spacey", and is fixated on the button. He's not aware of the rest of his environment, and shows no desire to communicate.
Autism is a developmental disorder that affects the brain's normal development of social and communications skills. It is characterized by impaired speech and social interaction and by restricted, repetitive or stereotyped behavior. Autism often appears in the first 3 years of life and can be treated if a child is diagnosed early.
So, how do you know that a child is Autistic?
There are certain common signs of Autism in infants that can be identified. However, it is important to remember that each Autistic child has unique symptoms and behavioral defects. Essentially, Autism affects the information processing portion in the brain. This can therefore be characterized by delayed cognitive development, delayed social and language development. Most infants show minimal attention to social stimuli such as smiles or even their names. Autistic children rarely maintain eye contact with anyone and rarely maintain any intimate relationships with anyone aside from their caregivers.
With regards to communications, most Autistic infants show signs of delayed language or speech development and would choose to use gestures or babbling to communicate their needs to their caregivers. It is also common to find an infant with compulsive behaviors, self-injury, ritualistic behaviors and sometimes would have restricted behavior. Some infants as they grow up would develop splinter skills that are unusual to children their age.
Children with Autism often go through a lot of challenges in their daily lives, with friends and at school. Children like these, unfortunately, cannot live an independent life and would therefore have to depend on others. These children face unique educational and social challenges. It is however important to note that each child goes through different challenges depending on their conditions. Each one of them should go through individualized treatment for their unique challenges.
Parents and caregivers go through a great amount of stress and challenges taking care of Autistic children. Even the child's brothers and sisters go through a lot of challenges to cope with an Autistic child's behavior. It is difficult to communicate with Autistic children because of the speech problem and also because of their compulsive behavior. It is therefore important to prepare in advance for these challenges and learn how to deal with them.
One in every 110 babies born in the United States alone is reported to be born with Autism. Some reports suggest that the numbers are even greater. In 2008 the Centers for Disease control has put the number of children diagnosed with Autism to 1-2 out of 1000 people World Wide. In the US alone, Autism is considered as the fastest growing developmental disability with a continued increase in diagnosis. Parents or guardians should be aware that with proper treatment and early intervention an Autistic child can show drastic improvements in their speech and social development.
To better understand Autism and the best treatment options available for an Autistic child, check out the "Essential Guide to Autism." It will provide an insight to individuals, parents and caregivers and will definitely make your life simpler when you realize how possible it is to care for an Autistic child.