~ by Yashika Sehgal
What is Autism
Autism, also called ASD i.e Autism Spectrum Disorder, is a complex condition. It includes a variety of challenges that deal with social skills, repetitive behaviour, speech and nonverbal communication. Each person with autism faces a different set of challenges and strengths in their life. For instance, some people with ASD require support in their daily lives whereas some people may need less or might not need any support to spend their lives.
Many autistic children look perfectly fine in appearance. We cannot judge anybody by their physical appearance. Some of these children spend most of their time in behaviour that is usually different from that of other developing children .Some common symptoms of Autism that have been observed include:
- Lack of eye contact
- Talking in a robotic manner
- Having trouble in understanding speech and gestures
- Having trouble in adapting to changes in day to day routine
- Having difficulty in social interactions
The exact cause of Autism is unknown. Many researches show that it does not have a single cause..According to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS), there are 2 factors that can lead to it. Both genetics and environment determine whether a person develops autism. Some factors that might be a cause of autism are:
- Genetic disorders
- Having an immediate family member who has autism
- Metabolic imbalances
- Exposure to heavy metals
Prevalence of Autism in Children
About 1 in 54 children have been identified with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) according to estimates from CDC’s Autism and Developmental Disabilities Monitoring (ADDM) Network. It has been observed that ASD is four times common among boys than among girls. Signs of autism start developing in childhood and keep being prevalent until adolescence and adulthood. ASD definitely affects the child and its family. However, it also has direct and indirect cost implications on the nation. This is because the country’s resources have to be utilized in providing health care, support for education, and rehabilitative services for these children.
World Autism Awareness Day
World Autism Awareness Day was set to April 2 of each year by the “United Nations General Assembly” on “Resolution 62/139”. It was adopted on December 18 2007. This was done to encourage member states to take action in raising awareness about people with ASD and support the research finding new ways to improve wellness and inclusion. World Autism Awareness Day is celebrated on 2 April every year.. This year will be the fourteenth annual Autism Awareness Day. On this day, members of the United Nations come together and spread awareness about people with ASD and other disorders such as Asperger Syndrome throughout the world. In 2021, this day will be observed through a virtual meeting. Panel discussions will be held with people with ASD and the challenges they have faced in the employment market.
Autism is a complex disorder which does not have a single cause and a defined treatment. Autism can be reduced by reducing the symptoms of the disorder. This will support the development and learning of people with ASD
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