Early Sign of Autism
The first signs of autism occur during early infancy and the disorder is usually diagnosed by the age of three. The autistic symptoms vary from one patient to another, from mild to severe forms.
The first warning sign is an abnormal response to different stimuli such as light or sound. Noises may appear painful to the child, smells are overwhelmingly strong and touches are painful. Loud noises and very bright lights trigger what is termed “meltdown”.
Autistic children are indifferent to their surroundings and are satisfied with playing and being alone. They show no real interest in toys and are usually uninterested in interacting with others.
Patients with high functioning autism manage to develop some communication skills In some instances, words or phrases are used repetitively (echolalia) and their patterns of speech often lack expression or intonation.
Resisting changes in their routine or repeating an action over and over again is a part of their daily behavior. In severe distress situations these children often engage in self-injurious actions like biting or scratching themselves or banging their heads.
Warning signs in small children include rejection of touch, frequent behavioral outbursts, inexplicable attachment to some object and disinterest in others. Autistic children cannot maintain actual eye contact, they do not fear danger and they show an under sensitivity towards pain.
In spite of all the efforts of parents and teachers, autistic children do not respond to normal teaching methods and verbal clues. They may give the impression of being deaf in spite of their normally developed hearing sense.
Signs and symptoms of autism increase in severity during teenage years but seem to decrease during adulthood.
Recent strides in treatment have made it possible for many autistic children to improve the quality of their lives dramatically.