There are many ways to support kids diagnosed with autism. Santa Clarita In Home Tutoring offers a wide range of one-on-one help for each child’s specific needs.
Autism Spectrum Disorder is a neurodevelopmental disorder that affects how people communicate and interact with others and the world around them. It’s lifelong — and can affect learning. According to the Centers for Disease Control, autism affects an estimated 1 in 54 children in the United States today.
Signs of autism usually appear by age 2 or 3. Some associated development delays can appear even earlier and can be diagnosed as early as 18 months. For many kids, trouble with language development is a first sign of autism. Other common signs include:
- Trouble with flexible thinking, or the ability to think in new ways about a problem
- Motor planning challenges, like riding a bike, catching a ball, or running
- Trouble reading nonverbal cues or picking up “unwritten” social rules
- Difficulty participating in conversation
- Not always being able to modulate (control volume or tone of speech)
- Taking language literally and not always understanding puns, riddles, or figures of speech
- Stereotyped behavior (a special interest around a certain object or subject)
- Repetitive behaviors and movements like arm flapping or rocking (stimming)
- Repeated sounds or phrases (echolalia)
How autism presents from person to person varies widely. Because Autism is a spectrum disorder, each person with autism has a distinct level of strengths and challenges. The ways in which people with autism learn, think and problem-solve can range from highly skilled to severely challenged. There’s also a wide range in intellectual and self-care abilities. An autism diagnosis reflects this by using Support Levels of 1, 2, or 3. These levels show how much support a person needs, with 3 as the highest level.
Research shows that early intervention leads to positive outcomes later in life for people with autism. If you’re concerned, talk with a health care provider. Share your concerns and what you’re seeing. Parents can request a screening at any time from their pediatrician or the State Early Intervention Program. After screening, your doctor can refer you to a specialist for a diagnostic evaluation.
If your child’s screening for autism identifies developmental delays or learning challenges, he or she is entitled to intervention services. You can start these services before your child receives an autism diagnosis. If your child is under the age of 3, you can get services through your state’s Early Intervention program. For children ages 3 to 21, you can get services through your school district’s Special Education office.