Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a developmental disability that can cause substantial impairments in social interaction and communication and may also include the presence of unusual behaviors and interests. Many people with ASD also may have unusual ways of learning, paying attention, and reacting to different sensations. The thinking and learning abilities of people with ASD can vary – from gifted to severely challenged. ASD begins before the age of 3 and lasts throughout a person’s life.
Your child may exhibit the following:
- Does not babble, point, or make meaningful gestures by 1 year of age.
- Does not speak one word by 16 months
- Does not combine two words by 2 years
- Does not respond to name
- Loses language or social skills
Other indicators may include:
- Poor eye contact
- Doesn’t seem to know how to play with toys
- Excessively lines up toys or other objects
- Is attached to one particular toy or object
- Doesn’t smile
- At times seems to be hearing impaired