A general physician or a neurologist can be consulted for autism.
2. What is Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD)?
A varied kind of disorders may be brought under the broad umbrella of autism. Therefore, this disorder is also called as autistic spectrum disorder (ASD). One such is pervasive developmental disorder not otherwise specified (PDDNOD) in which children demonstrate similar but not all symptoms to autism. A minor form of autistic disorder is called Asperger syndrome. Other forms of the autistic disorders are those that mostly affect girls such as Rett Syndrome, where the child may suddenly withdraw from all social contacts. Another very rare form of the disease is childhood disintegrative disorder (CDD) in which the child rapidly loses all learned communications and regresses into a socially isolated individual.
3. What are the characteristics of Asperger syndrome?
Asperger syndrome is a developmental disorder with impaired social interaction and nonverbal communication. It is also characterized by repetitive patterns like autism but these kids have normal language and intelligence compared to autistic kids.
4. How can I help my autistic child?
Parents can help their autistic child in every possible way. Providing emotional and social support to the autistic children is a very crucial element in the care. You can also read up on materials available to know more about your child's condition. You can communicate with specialists and therapists and sit with them to decide on the best course of procedure to follow that will bring maximum benefit to the child. Many a times parents of autistic children have been able to not only help their own children adjust with autism, they have successfully build up support groups with other parents for discussing related problems.
5. Is autism considered a birth defect?
Autism is a neurodevelopmental disorder. The association between autism and birth defects is due to the common genetic and environmental factors that influence their occurrence. Birth defects can also predispose a child to autism.
6. Is autism preventable?
Rubella-associated autism can be prevented by vaccination against rubella before conceiving.
Avoiding the seizure drug valproic acid which is considered a risk factor.
Early diagnosis and treatment of a hereditary disease called phenylketonuria (PKA) and celiac disease may reduce the chances of the child having autism.
7. What is the connection between joint attention and autism?
Joint attention is a social-communicative skill that a child develops in early years. It involves a child and an adult using hand movements and gazes to jointly focus their attention on interesting objects or events. This developmental skill is impaired in children with autism and early intervention efforts are important to acquire it.