Autism typically lasts throughout a person’s lifetime and is described as a complex neurobiological disorder. It belongs to a group of disorders, called Autism Spectrum Disorders or ASD in short. ASD includes Rett Syndrome, Asperger Syndrome, Autism, Pervasive Developmental Disorder and Childhood Disintegrative Disorder.
Autism damages a person’s ability to relate and communicate with others. It is also characterized with repetitive behaviors and rigid routine patterns, such as following specific unnecessary routines and obsessive arranging of objects in a specific order for no particular reason. Such symptoms can occur in minor or very extent forms.
Currently, there is 1 in 166 people that is diagnosed with the condition, which makes it more common than diabetes, pediatric cancer and AIDS combined. Autism can occur in all races, social and ethnic groups. Boys are more likely to develop the condition than girls.
For many years, autism was considered a general disorder, but in the previous years, different types of autism were distinguished, one of which is high functioning autism.
High Functioning Autism
The condition means that the child will experience light forms of autism, meaning that he/she will have little social impairments. Normally, such people are able to communicate relatively normal with other people, with minor difficulties, as well as perform other functions.
Diagnosing a child with autism has different components. One which is an IQ test, but this alone cannot give definite results for the level of high functioning autism the child has. Approaches as use of language, non-verbal interaction and behavior patterns are also used to determine the extent of the condition.
The medical field is able to diagnose a child with high functioning autism when the symptoms are not severe, but the condition is present. It is good to know that most of these children have the same intelligence as their peers, sometimes even higher. In most of the cases, they have the same vocabulary as well. The difference in children with high functioning autism is that their learning comprehension is slightly lower, they don’t express themselves in details and don’t show so much emotion. They also have a hard time reading properly body language as well as following non-verbal instructions.
Prevention, treatment and cure
Science hasn’t found any effective means to prevent autism, nor to effectively treat it or cure it. However, researchers have found that an early intervention in an appropriate educational setting, for a period of at least two years, during the child’s preschool years can lead to significant improvements for children, suffering from Autism Spectrum Disorders.
To sum up, although parents may have concerns about labeling their child as “autistic,” they should consult a doctor in case they find something unusual about the behavior of their child.