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Recognising autism in children

Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) or autism spectrum condition is a condition which affects the way a person responds to the world around them. It affects about one child in every hundred. 

It is called a spectrum condition because the symptoms of autism can vary such a lot from person to person.

Not everyone with ASD has learning difficulties or disabilities, nor does  everyone with ASD need support throughout their lives

Recognising characteristics of autism in children

 


People with ASD are seen to have untypical social interactions, commonly have communication difficulties and have some restrictive and/or repetitive behaviour. Some typical examples include hand-flapping, lining up toys, an intense interest in a certain subject and resistance toward changes in plans.

Problems with social communication and interaction

 


The main features of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) are problems with social communication and interaction.

In infants this can mean a delayed speech development (for example, speaking less than 50 different words by the age of two).

It is called a spectrum condition because the symptoms of autism can vary such a lot from person to person.

Recognising the symptoms


You can read a detailed description of the symptoms of Autistic Spectrum Disorder on the NHS website.

Autism can be diagnosed in a child's early years - the first check is with a health visitor at the age of 3 - and behavioural intervention is most effective when started at an early age.

Taking action


If you think your child has the condition, or if you're concerned about your child's development, talk to your GP or health visitor.

Charities and support groups in Essex


There are many support groups in Essex that can help people who are beginning to find out what autism may mean for them and their family.

 

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