When children come into the world the last thing we think is that the child is going to encounter a difficult developing experience. Babies come into the world so innocently and unprepared for the road ahead. Their survival depends on the love and care of their parent(s), but their overall development is controlled by biology, that is, genes. Parents and families can offer their babies the most loving entry into the world and provide a host of tools to help them grow. But unfortunately parents and families are never ready for a mental health or special needs diagnosis.
Recent research shows that about 1 in 88 children are born with an autism spectrum disorder.
The numbers have increased over the years, falling from 1 in every 150 children to 1 in every 88 children experiencing autism. Autism is a complex neurological and developmental diagnosis that entails a range of behaviors. Children with this diagnosis often express different characteristics, talents, skills, interests, and deficits.
Another closely aligned disorder is Asperger’s Syndrome, the higher functioning diagnosis on the autism spectrum. Most children with this diagnosis are said to have strong skills in math and science, but the reality is that children experience Asperger’s syndrome differently and not every child becomes a mathematician or scientist. There is a vast array of erroneous ideas about the autism spectrum, which makes this topic important for us.
Cases of autism spectrum disorders vary and not every child or adolescent is self-destructive. Take a look at this young genius!
In recognition of Autism Awareness Day on Tuesday, April2, 2013, I encourage you to pass this along.
All the best
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2013) New data on Autism Spectrum Disorders. Retrieved April 1, 2013, from http://www.cdc.gov/features/countingautism/.
Families Advocating Autism Now. (2012, August 28). Interviews of parents of autistic children. Retrieved April 1, 2013 from, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gu9i410K6Dk.
Today Tonight. Raising kids with autism. (2012, April 6). Retrieved April 1, 2013 from, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K7q_4VKAJm8.