A Definition of Autism

What is Autism?

Autism is a common condition that varies considerably from person to person. It is so complex and its effects so wide-ranging that no two children with the condition are the same.

However, there are three common factors that most people with an autism spectrum condition share:-
1. Difficulties with Communication
2. Problems with social interaction
3. Difficulties in developing imagination.
Many children with autism are either over or under-sensitive to sensory input. This can lead to either ‘overload’ or ‘zoning out’, both of which present as unusual behaviour to the untrained eye.

You will probably hear it stated that autism is a ‘lifelong disability’, but we at AuKids think that’s a rather negative way of looking at it. Children with autism are simply wired up differently. In fact, many children with autism have great skills because of this ‘wiring’. Some autistic people excel at maths and science, some have particularly good memories or artistic abilities and others are a whiz with technology.

 
Difference is not necessarily a disability.
What do I do now?

It’s important not to overwhelm yourself with information but to cherry pick the pieces of information that are most important to you. After diagnosis you will probably be assigned a speech and language therapist to help you work with your child on communication and social interaction.

The best source of information in the UK is the National Autistic Society (NAS). They have an autism helpline on 0845 070 4004.

The NAS has leaflets on all aspects of autism. They will also be able to direct you to your local branch of the National Autistic Society which will offer extra support and information.

 
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