Autism Symptoms

You can observe some Autism symptoms in a person as young as two years old and sometimes even younger. Here are the main Autism symptoms that will allow you to identify or wonder if your a member of your family, a friend or anyone else might be affected by this disorder. The severity of these Autism symptoms may vary as each individual is unique. That is why it is evaluated on a spectrum.

Tuesday, April 19, 2005

Mother speaks out on Autism Symptoms

-- Simple signs may be the key to detecting autism at an early age.
It can be as simple as a child not having warm, joyful expressions by 6 months old, not gesturing by 9 months old or not speaking by 16 months old.
These red flags don't mean the child will have autism, but it means he is at risk, said Nancy Wiseman, the mother of an autistic child and founder of First Signs -- a national, nonprofit dedicated to educating doctors, educators and parents about the early signs.
Any child displaying signs that deviate from healthy development needs to be evaluated, she said.
"Screening can be simple, taking no more than five minutes. Through observation, screening and sharing with parents, you can ensure each child's healthy development," Wiseman said. "The key is early detection."
In the midst of the national month of awareness for autism, Delaware is launching the First Signs training program to inform physicians and health care professionals how to detect the early warning signs of autism.
The state-wide program coincides with a national effort to also educate parents about healthy development, urging them to "Learn the signs. Act early."
If physicians can recognize an autistic child early in his life, Delaware Lt. Gov. John Carney said, it can help improve the child's and his family's quality of life.
"Our education, social service and health care systems are not effectively identifying ASD (autism spectrum disorders) during the early years, under age 3, when interventions are most effective," he said. "In fact, by kindergarten enrollment, only 30 percent of children with developmental delays have been identified. Pediatricians and other medical practitioners lack the training, tools and time."
Through Delaware First Signs, physicians, nurse practitioners and physician assistants can receive training, screening kits and Continuing Medical Education credits.
By heightening awareness, Delaware hopes the program will improve the frequency and quality of screenings, facilitate timely referrals and lower the average detection age.
Autism is not only a personal battle for Carney, whose niece is autistic, but as chairman of the Delaware Health Commission, he knows early detection can be positive for families and clinically beneficial.
"In the long run," Carney said, "early detection can save time, money and heartache."


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