What is Autism?

Autism is a neurological development disorder that affects three main areas of the brain:

  • Social Interaction
  • Communication
  • Sensory

Cognitive and intellectual abilities can vary from mentally disabled to above average intelligence and savant. Those with autism are neither all gifted nor all mentally impaired.

Autism - Social/Communication Red Flags

If your baby shows any of these signs, please ask your pediatrician or family practitioner for an immediate evaluation:

  • 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 or thereafter
  • No babbling by 12 months
  • No back-and-forth gestures, such as pointing,reaching, or waving by 12 months
  • No words by 16 monthsNo two-word meaningful phrases (without imitating or repeating) by 24 months
  • Any loss of speech or babbling or social skills at any age

Signs of Asperger Syndrome:

  • Difficulty making friends
  • Difficulty with non-verbal social cues, such as facial expressions
  • No understanding that others may have thoughts or feelings different from his or her own
  • Obsessive focus on a narrow subject
  • Awkward motor skills
  • Inflexibility about routines
  • Unusual patterns of speech
  • Stereotyped or repetitive patterns of behaviors, interests, or activities

Can also have low muscle tone, gastrointestinal problems and anxiety.

If you have any concerns about your child’s development, consult a physician as soon as possible.

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LuEtta Loeber, Treasurer
Holly Nelson, Fund Development
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Jack Dysart

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