How stigmatized is the autistic spectrum in society

Autism: Everything You Need to Know About Autism Spectrum Disorder

Back to the blog

mardi 02 avril 2019 - forpatient

Children and adults with autism are often exposed to stigma and discrimination. This usually leads to unmet health needs, educational opportunities and opportunities to participate in everyday life in one's own environment. Studies show that nearly two-thirds of autistic children ages 6-15 have been bullied at some point in their lives.
World Autism Day is an internationally recognized day that takes place on April 2nd every year and is designed to raise awareness for people with autism. On this day, autism organizations seek acceptance and support for people with ASD and promote the research, diagnosis, and treatment of autism spectrum disorders.

What is autism

Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) are profound developmental disorders that are characterized by social and communicative deficits and limited interests and behaviors. According to various studies, children with autism disorders generally have poorer outcomes in cognitive and adaptive functions. These differences develop over time and affect areas of cognitive, social, and behavioral development.
About 30 percent of children with autism have intellectual disabilities, while an estimated third of people on the autism spectrum do not speak.

Autism symptoms

The main symptoms of autism spectrum disorder include restricted, repetitive behavior combined with communication problems. ASD symptoms that begin in early childhood tend to continue into puberty and adulthood.

Autism and cognitive development

By around 3 years of age, most children have developed cognitive abilities. Your thinking becomes more complex as language and language development progress rapidly. Preschoolers can understand cause and effect, solve problems, and predict outcomes. In contrast, autistic children of the same age tend to have problems with focus, attention, change, memory, organization, and time management.
Language and language development in children with ASD is usually delayed. As a result, these children are often easily distracted, cannot follow simple instructions and do not use eye contact or gestures (mutual attention) when communicating.

Control and regulation at ASD

Three-year-old children are usually proficient in regulating their emotions. They generally display good emotional control, empathy, and affection for friends, as well as a variety of other emotions. They become more and more independent and inquisitive, understand the rules and strive to obey them.
However, it can take much longer for children with ASD to develop these skills. Preschoolers with ASD usually have difficulty controlling emotional responses, especially frustration. They often display extreme behaviors such as aggression, great shyness, or fear. Additionally, preschoolers with autism rarely respond to people outside the family, display few emotions, and avoid eye contact. They do not play with other children or enjoy their company.

Reasons for autism

Most studies show that genetics play an important role in a wide variety of autism cases:

  • For parents with one autistic child, the probability is 2-18% that the second child will also have ASD.

  • Children of older parents are at higher risk of developing ASD.

  • If one of the identical twins has autism, the other is also affected 36-95% of the time.

In addition, certain environmental factors can increase the risk of autism in people who are genetically predisposed to it. These factors include:

  • Pregnancies that are less than a year apart

  • Pregnancy and childbirth complications

Autism in Europe

Recent research suggests that autism spectrum disorder affects around 1 in 100 people in Europe. While the number of reported cases of autism has increased significantly over the past 30 years, some studies have found a lower prevalence rate of autism. These differences in prevalence rates may be the result of variations in the scientific methods used and the fact that the surveys are mainly based on a limited sample of a country's population rather than on national statistics.
This is why the Autism Spectrum Disorders in the European Union (ASDEU) program has issued recommendations for improving autism prevalence research in Europe.

Treatment options for autism

During regular examinations, your pediatrician or family doctor will carry out preventive examinations in the areas of language, social skills, motor development and behavior. If the doctor notices something unusual in your child's development, you may be referred to a specialist with experience in ASD diagnostics.
For the most accurate diagnosis possible, your child will undergo a thorough medical examination, during which his behavior will be observed for a long time and detailed discussions will take place with you and your spouse about your child.
For detailed ASD screening, you may be referred to some of the following specialists:

  • Pediatric neurologists

  • Psychiatrists or psychologists in children's clinics

  • Developmental pediatrician

  • Physiotherapists

  • Audiologists and / or speech therapists

Also, since autism is a spectrum, every child has their own needs, especially when it comes to education. Professionals such as psychologists, teachers, social workers and hearing and vision specialists carry out their own assessment to determine what offers your child needs in school.

Via the blog.

  1. All blog posts here.

  2. Doctena enables you to book a doctor's appointment online. In Germany, Austria, Switzerland, the Netherlands, Belgium and Luxembourg.