What Does Autism Look Like In Girls
Although every child with autism is different, here are some common characteristics in girls with autism:
- A special interest in animals, music, art, and literature
- A strong imagination
- A desire to arrange and organise objects
- Not wanting to play cooperatively with female peers
- A tendency to âmimicâ others in social situations in order to blend in
- An ability to hold their emotions in check at school, but be prone to meltdowns or explosive behaviour at home
- Strong sensory sensitivities, especially to sounds and touch .
For autistic girls to thrive, itâs important they have access to a timely and accurate diagnosis, and the informed supports that come with it. A delayed or missed diagnosis can impede their education and development, as well as their social and community participation.
While boys with autism are more likely to have outwardly challenging behaviours, girls with autism are more vulnerable to internalising problems.
As our understanding of how autism affects females is still emerging, it is important parents and professionals alike stay updated on the best ways to specifically support girls and women on the spectrum.
How Is Autism Treated
There is no cure for ASD. Therapies and behavioral interventions are designed to remedy specific symptoms and can substantially improve those symptoms. The ideal treatment plan coordinates therapies and interventions that meet the specific needs of the individual. Most health care professionals agree that the earlier the intervention, the better.
Educational/behavioral interventions: Early behavioral/educational interventions have been very successful in many children with ASD. In these interventions therapists use highly structured and intensive skill-oriented training sessions to help children develop social and language skills, such as applied behavioral analysis, which encourages positive behaviors and discourages negative ones. In addition, family counseling for the parents and siblings of children with ASD often helps families cope with the particular challenges of living with a child with ASD.
Top 10 Autism Statistics For 2021
- Around 5.4 million people in the US are autistic.
- One in 54 American children is autistic.
- 40% of autistic people are more anxious.
- There is a 13% prevalence of sleep disorder in autistic people.
- Data on autism rates indicates that 7% of children born prematurely are autistic.
- 61% of autistic children present with minimal or no functional speech.
- In England, 71% of autistic children continue their education in mainstream schools.
- 40% of autistic adults who work part-time want to work more hours.
- ASD costs amount to $268 billion annually.
- The mortality rate of autistic people is double that of the general population.
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Invaluable Autism Statistics And Facts For Acceptant 2021
Autism spectrum disorder is one of the most common developmental disabilities. The disorder refers to a wide range of conditions characterized by challenges with repetitive behaviors, non-verbal communication, social skills, and speech. Now, we have compiled relevant autism statistics in this article. Read on to extend your knowledge of the topic and make space for inclusive conversations.
Everything In Your Mouth Counts
PKU can be successfully managed with a severely restricted diet. That simple statement is factually true, but practically impossible to follow, as it requires slashing protein consumption by about 90 percent. To compensate for the missing protein, several times a day PKU patients take a medical formula commonly referred to simply as formula containing forms of proteins that are digestible to their bodies. Several manufacturers now add vitamins and minerals and offer a variety of formats and tastes to make it more consumer friendly, but that wasn’t always the case.
When I was a kid, it tasted horrible, was the consistency of house paint. I didn’t think about it, I just drank it. I didn’t like it but you get used to it after a while, recalls Jeff Wolf, the twang of Appalachia still strong in his voice. Now age 50, he grew up in Ashland, Kentucky and was part of the first wave of persons with PKU who were identified at birth as newborn screening was rolled out across the US. He says the options of taste and consistency have improved tremendously over the years.
Some people with PKU are restricted to as little as 8 grams of protein a day from food. That’s a handful of almonds or a single hard-boiled egg a skimpy 4-ounce hamburger and slice of cheese adds up to half of their weekly protein ration. Anything above that daily allowance is more than the body can handle and toxic levels of Phe begin to accumulate in the brain.
Les Clark with a birthday cake.
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There Is No Scientific Evidence That Vaccines Cause Autism
A much-talked-about report from the 1990s claimed there may be a link between certain vaccinations given during infancy and autism. Those claims have since been debunked by subsequent studies and the evidence behind those earlier claims has been found to be unreliable.
The American Academy of Pediatrics has compiled a list of dozens of studies that have found there is NO connection between childhood vaccines and autism. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has said the same.
Veenstra-Vanderweele says that this train of thought is dangerous. Vaccinate your children. He says there is no scientific evidence that pinpoints vaccinations as a cause of autism.
The Research By The Numbers
The team of researchers studied data from Danish national health registries that included three generations and nearly 1.5 million children.
They found that the chance of having ASD for children born to parents who are in their 30s is up to 10 percent higher than parents who are 25 to 29 years old.
The researchers also reported that the chance is 50 percent higher when the parents are in their 40s or 50s.
We observed that children with young maternal grandparents and children with young and old paternal grandparents had higher risk compared with children of grandparents who were 25 to 29 years old at the time of the birth of the parents, Liew said.
He says these findings, however, are unique and require further replications.
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How Is Autism Managed
If your child is diagnosed with autism, you will be guided through the various treatment options. There are education programs and support services available for children with autism and their parents or caregivers from a number of organisations such as Autism Spectrum Australia.
Treatments used to manage autism are best started as early in a persons life as possible. Specific symptoms and social skills can be improved with the right support and programs. Because everyone with autism is different, the best results are obtained from a treatment program specifically tailored to their individual needs.
Language and social skills are taught through intensive educational programs and behavioural therapies. Speech pathology focuses on developing communication and social skills. Occupational therapy concentrates on sensory motor development, such as learning play and fine motor skills, as well as how to cope in social situations.
Public and private schooling options are available for children with autism. Find out more about schooling options on the Autism Awareness website.
Sometimes claims are made about treatments that are misleading. Avoid treatments that offer a cure or recovery as there is no evidence to support these claims. Ensure that the treatments and supports you choose are informed by evidence.
Autism Awareness Australia provides self-care tips and helpful links and resources.
What Is The Difference Between Autism And Adhd
Autism and ADHD are sometimes confused with one another.
Despite some similarities, ADHD is not considered a spectrum disorder. One major difference between the two is that people with ADHD do not tend to lack socio-communicative skills.
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Autistic Women And Girls
More men and boys are currently diagnosed as autistic than women and girls. This is changing slowly but surely, as more women and girls are being diagnosed as autistic.
Attitudes towards autism and gender are changing, although we still have a long way to go. Many autistic women and girls are still struggling to get the support they need.
Here, we explain more about the gender diagnosis gap, share stories from autistic women and girls, and share some theories on why more men and boys are being diagnosed as autistic.
You can also visit our gender identity page here, where we look at autism and gender identity in more detail.
Autistic People May Act In A Different Way To Other People
Autistic people may:
- find it hard to communicate and interact with other people
- find it hard to understand how other people think or feel
- find things like bright lights or loud noises overwhelming, stressful or uncomfortable
- get anxious or upset about unfamiliar situations and social events
- take longer to understand information
- do or think the same things over and over
If you think you or your child may be autistic, get advice about the signs of autism.
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Epilepsy Is Most Common In Autistic Children Over The Age Of Nine
In a nutshell, epilepsy is a neurological disorder characterized by recurrent episodes of seizures and associated with abnormal activity in the brain. Autism spectrum disorder statistics show that epilepsy is most common in autistic children over the age of nine. Whats more, autistic children over the age of ten have a 2.35 times higher chance of being diagnosed with epilepsy than younger children.
What Is Niehs Doing
2018 Spirit Lecture
Watch Temple Grandin, Colorado State University, deliver a lecture at NIEHS, “Developing Individuals Who Have Different Kinds of Minds, 3rd Edition.” Also read about the lecture in this newsletter article.
NIEHS-funded researchers are primarily interested in risk factors related to gene and environment interaction. Key findings are grouped by topic below.
Air pollution Researchers found early-life exposure to air pollution may be a risk factor for autism.
- Children of mothers living near a freeway, and traffic-related pollution, during the third trimester of pregnancy were twice as likely to develop ASD. A distance of 1,014 feet, or a little less than 3.5 football fields, was considered near a freeway.2
- Children with a mutation in a gene called MET, combined with high levels of exposure to air pollution, may have increased risk.3
Prenatal conditions and maternal factors Problems with a mothers immune system, certain metabolic conditions, or inflammation during pregnancy may be linked with higher autism risk for her children.
- Some mothers of autistic children have antibodies, or proteins in the body that fight infection, that may interfere with their childrens brain development, possibly leading to autism.4
- Maternal diabetes or obesity are linked to increased likelihood of having a child with autism or other developmental disability.5
- Fever during pregnancy was associated with increased risk of autism for children.6
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Female Protective Effect Hypothesis
According to the female protective effect hypothesis, more extreme genetic mutations are required for a girl to develop autism than for a boy. In 2012, Harvard researchers published findings suggesting that, on average, more genetic and environmental risk factors are required for girls to develop autism, compared to boys. The researchers analyzed DNA samples of nearly 800 families affected by autism and nearly 16,000 individuals with a variety of neurodevelopmental disorders. They looked for various types of gene mutations. Overall, they found that females diagnosed with autism or another neurodevelopmental disorder had a greater number of harmful mutations throughout the genome than did males with the same disorders. Women with an extra X chromosome, 47,XXX or triple X syndrome, have autism-like social impairments in 32% of cases.
Cracking The Genetic Code
Scientists spent decades looking for a specific gene, or a specific part of the brain, that could be causing the symptoms of autism. But that work hasn’t turned up any one specific answer. Instead, researchers have had to change their questions. They now suspect that autism, like other complex diseases such as cancer or obesity, comes about by the interaction of many different genes and environmental factors. Researchers estimate that there may be hundreds of genes that could make someone more likely to develop autism, but merely having any one of those genes doesn’t determine whether or not the disorder develops, or how severe it is if it does.
Through careful epidemiological studies conducted on large populations, a number of scientists, including Craig Newschaffer at Drexel University and Peter Bearman at Columbia University, have been able to point to some factors that correlate to the risk of autism. Over the years, researchers have determined that childhood or prenatal exposure to toxic chemicals, such as pesticides hormone-disrupting phthalates and some found in air pollution, have played a role. Mothers who have bacterial or viral infectionsduring pregnancy or those who are obese are also more likely to give birth to babies who are later diagnosed with autism.
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How Does Autism Affect Kids
Autistic children may not reach the same developmental milestones as their peers, or they may demonstrate the loss of previously developed social or language skills.
For instance, a 2-year-old without autism may show interest in simple games of make-believe. A 4-year-old without autism may enjoy engaging in activities with other children. An autistic child may have trouble interacting with others or dislike it altogether.
Autistic children may also engage in repetitive behaviors, have difficulty sleeping, or compulsively eat nonfood items. They may find it hard to thrive without a structured environment or consistent routine.
If your child is autistic, you may have to work closely with their teachers to ensure they succeed in the classroom.
Many resources are available to help autistic children as well as their loved ones. Local support groups can be found through the national nonprofit the Autism Society of America.
Tip : Manage Anxiety And Depression
Some people find that anxiety and depression go hand in hand with symptoms of ASD. For example, difficulty relating to others can lead to feelings of anxiety. Increased anxiety can, in turn, make it even harder to communicate. You might even feel so flustered that you cant form sentences.
Feelings of isolation can also trigger depression. But there are steps you can take to manage your mood and improve how you feel.
Stay active. Exercise is good for the mind and eases stress. Some studies show that vigorous exercise can be especially useful for helping adults with ASD manage aggression. Find an aerobic exercise that fits neatly into your routine and wont potentially throw your schedule into chaos. It may be something as simple as going for daily walks or runs. Make sure its something you enjoy, so youre more likely to stick to it.
Rely on close friends. Socializing can also be good for your mood, as long as the people youre with dont stress you out. Find people who share your interests. Thanks to the Internet, its easy to find people in your local area who share your interests. If possible, look for conventions or other gatherings where people who share your hobby come together and interact in person.
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Intellectual Disability And Developmental Delays
Intellectual disability can be diagnosed when a child who is six years or older has an below 70 as well as difficulties with daily tasks. In children under six years, the term developmental delay is used when children have significant cognitive and language delays.
Intellectual disability varies from person to person. Autistic children with intellectual disability might have uneven skills, so there might be some things that theyre quite good at and others they find hard.
In most cases, autistic children have more trouble with verbal skills like talking, listening and understanding than with non-verbal skills like doing puzzles or drawing.
How common is intellectual disability in autistic children?In the past, it was thought that 50-60% of autistic children had intellectual disability or developmental delays. But its now thought to be 20-30%, with another 20-25% having borderline intellectual disability with an IQ of 71-85.
This drop might be because IQ testing for autistic children has improved, support and education is better at addressing autistic children’s learning needs, and more children without intellectual disability are being diagnosed with autism.
Some researchers have argued that some childrens developmental delays might be caused by their social learning difficulties, rather than being a separate condition.
Find out moreIntellectual disability
When Should I See My Doctor
It’s important to seek help if you are concerned you or your child has autism. Early intervention offers the best outcomes, no matter what type of autism a child has.
There may be different signs of autism in different ages.
In the first year, a baby with autism might not be interested in other people and may not make eye contact with their parents. They may not smile or gesture like other babies.
As toddlers, children with autism might not respond to their name, or might focus on activities like lining up toys. They may not be interested in playing with other children or might speak in a monotone way.
Older children with autism might have difficulties in social situations, following instructions or making friends.
Sometimes people are not diagnosed with autism until they are adults. They may spend their lives feeling like they dont quite fit in. They may have difficulties with relationships, work and social situations. They may also have mental health conditions like anxiety or depression.
Autism Awareness Australia provides information about signs of autism in people at different ages.
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