Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a developmental disability that can cause significant social, communication, and behavioral challenges7. Individuals with ASD may communicate, interact, behave, and learn in ways that are different from most. To receive a diagnosis of ASD, an individual must display consistent lack of social communication and social interaction in different environments and situations9. Those with ASD may also display restricted, repetitive patterns of behavior, interest, or activities9. Symptoms may become visible during the second year of life. However, if the developmental delays are severe enough symptoms may become observable prior to 12 months of age 9.
- Not looking at objects when another person points to it.
- Having trouble relating to others or not having an interest in others.
- Avoiding eye-contact.
- Difficulty understanding other people’s feelings or talking about their feelings.
- Difficulty understanding sarcasm or humor.
- May be interested in people but be unsure of how to talk, play, or relate to them.
- Repeating words or phrases spoken to them.
- Repeating actions over and over.
- Having trouble adapting to changes in their routine.
- Experiencing unusual reactions to the way things smell, taste, look, feel, or sound.
- Fixated interest in one area (i.e., toys, school subjects).
- Repetitive bodily regulation movements such as tapping their feet, rubbing their hands, snapping fingers, etc.
- Lack of interest in objects.
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