Autism is a complex developmental disability that typically appears during the first three years of life and is the result of a neurological disorder that affects the typical functioning of the brain, impacting development in the areas of social interactions and communication skills. Both children and adults with autism often show difficulties in verbal and non-verbal communication, social interactions, and leisure or play activities.
Autism is the most common form of Pervasive Developmental Disorders, affecting an estimated 1 in 59 children in the United States according to the Centers of Diseases Control Prevention in 2014.
Autism is a spectrum disorder that affects each individual differently and at varying degrees. Many treatments and interventions can help diminish the effects of autism; therefore early diagnosis is critical.
Presently, we don’t have a medical test that can diagnose autism. Instead, specially trained physicians and psychologists administer an autism-specific behavioral evaluation.