Autism Awareness Month

April is National Autism Awareness Month. Every day, millions of Americans living with autism and their families face unique challenges that many of us will never fully understand or appreciate. During National Autism Awareness Month, it is a time to better understand autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and improve the lives of individuals living with it. According to Autismspeaks.org 1 in 68 children are diagnosed with some form of autism. Boys are nearly five times more likely than girls to have autism. Early prevention is always best when determining if a child has autism. If you think your child has sign of autism, don’t wait. Take them to the pediatrician as soon as possible to determine the necessary steps to take. According to Autismspeaks.org the following “red flags” may indicate your child is at risk for an autism spectrum disorder:
• No big smiles or other warm, joyful expressions by six months or thereafter
• No back-and-forth sharing of sounds, smiles or other facial expressions by nine months
• No babbling by 12 months
• No back-and-forth gestures such as pointing, showing, reaching or waving by 12 months
• No words by 16 months
• No meaningful, two-word phrases (not including imitating or repeating) by 24 months
• Any loss of speech, babbling or social skills at any age
Each form of autism is different. No matter what every person diagnosed with autism should be treated with unconditional love and respect like others. Autism does not define someone, but only makes them unique in their own way. There are several organizations today that are dedicated to raising money and awareness to improving the lives of those diagnosed with autism. Autism should not only be a concern in month of April, but each and every day.

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