Autism is a disorder of the nervous system affecting how an individual socializes and communicates with others. Based on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention surveillance, 1 in every 54 8-year-old children in the U.S. has ASD.
Symptoms and behaviors can present in the form of mild impairment to severe disability, and this can vary within and between individuals. Individuals with ASD may experience problems with communication, obsessive interests, repetitive patterns of behaviors, and difficulty in their social interactions. These symptoms are usually evident before the age of 3.
Given the implications ASD can have on developmental milestones, it's important to start treatment as early as possible. By implementing therapies (such as applied behavioral analysis, speech and language, and psychiatric support) early on, we can help to reduce symptoms and allow for optimization of an individual’s development and education.