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A Brief Autism Definition and Explanation

A Brief Autism Definition and Explanation

A Brief Autism Definition and Explanation

imagesFinding an accurate autism definition can be difficult. Autism spectrum disorder is a physical condition that appears by age 3, and is linked to abnormalities in the chemistry of the brain and body. Autism is a blanket term for a wide range of symptoms that may be displayed at varying degrees of severity. Affected children can behave in a variety of ways, and symptom manifestation can be very unpredictable. The first step to understanding autism is to take a look at the commonalities connecting sufferers.

Language

When finding an appropriate autism definition, sufferer’s language skills should be addressed. There are a number of language disabilities that are common among children with autism. Autistic people are generally behind their peers in language development. They will often repeat or echo words they hear, but lack an understanding of their meaning. It is also common for autistic children to be very quiet, removed from conversation and reluctant to speak.

Behavior

To arrive at an understandable autism definition we must also examine behavior. Again there are some common behavioral factors that have been used to identify and define autism. Autistic people are frequently preoccupied with repetitive activities. They can be overwhelmed by normal stimuli such as exposure to sound, light, and touch. It is also common for them to perform self-stimulating behaviors such as flapping hands or smelling things.

Social Skills

Social skills are another important part of a comprehensive autism definition. Often autistic children have trouble making eye contact and responding when spoken to. They struggle to form normal social relationships. They can have very restricted focus, making it difficult for them to connect and interact with others. Their language restrictions often further remove them from their peers.

Treatment

Now that we have a clearer autism definition, what can be done to address its many symptoms? There is no clear-cut cure for autism, but there are a number of treatments that have been shown to be effective in treating its symptoms. It has been shown that by treating the symptoms of autism, you can significantly improve the function and quality of life of autistic people. Some of the most common treatments for symptoms include:

  • Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy – This therapy focuses on addressing the unique challenges autistic people face in their environment. It teaches them how to understand and process their own thoughts and feelings, as well as those of others. CBT can help children learn to cope with their surroundings, and engage in “normal” social behavior. This therapy has helped autistic children improve social interactions and skills. It has also been shown to reduce anxiety, depression, and obsessive-compulsive behavior. 
  • Verbal Therapy – This therapy helps autistic children learn language in a way that works for their unique limitations. By using positive reinforcement and repetition, this therapy has been shown effective in increasing communication skills in autistic patients. It can help autistic people with both speaking and understanding language. 
  • Neurofeedback Therapy – This therapy is designed to regulate wayward brainwave patterns and return them to an organized pattern. As a result, the brain becomes more efficient and stable. Neurofeedback has been shown effective in treating a number of neurological conditions including chronic pain, anxiety, panic attacks, and insomnia. It can be a useful therapy for treating many symptoms of autism. If you’d like to read more about this treatment, click here.

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