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Autism

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 Understand Autism

 

Autism is a term that refers to a collection of developmental disorders that affect the brain. This brain disorder  affects a person’s ability to communicate, form relationships with others, and respond appropriately to the external world. People with autism have a tendency to have repetitive behaviors or interests and rigid patterns of thinking.


The severity of autism varies greatly. Some people with autism can function at a relatively high level, with speech and intelligence intact. Others have serious cognitive impairments and language delays; some never speak.

 

5. How can you tell autism from Asperger syndrome?

According to the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (AACAP), Asperger syndrome is characterized by problems with behavior and development of social skills. Because of similarities to symptoms of autism, some practitioners feel that children with these symptoms need careful evaluation and that they may benefit from different types of therapies.

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6. What is Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD)–not otherwise specified?

Pervasive developmental disorder–not otherwise specified (PDD–NOS) is a   developmental disability that shares many characteristics with autism.

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7. What is Rett syndrome?

Rett syndrome is a disorder of the nervous system that has some of the same  characteristics as autism. Both diseases strike at an early age, and a loss of language and social interaction are common in both.

Like autism, children suffering from Rett syndrome will avoid eye contact, have a diminished ability to express feelings, and will exhibit purposeless hand movements such as flapping, wringing, or waving. Seizures are common in both diseases, and neither has a known cure.

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8. What is childhood disintegrative disorder?

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Childhood disintegrative disorder (CDD) is a neurological condition with similarities to autism. This condition can be differentiated from autism by the pattern of onset, its course, and outcome.

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9.What is the prognosis of children with autism?

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Autism is a life-long disorder. Predicting an autistic child’s future, in regards to social abilities, scholastic achievement, and vocational potential, is difficult even for experts without a full neurological assessment and several months or years of observations. Experts look for certain predictors of future abilities, such as intelligence, verbal ability, and socialization.

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