Autism is not just a mental disease, it is a broad range of conditions characterized by challenges with social skills, repetitive behaviors, speech and nonverbal communication. It has a many sub types, most influenced by a combination of genetic and environmental factors. Autism is a spectrum disorder (ASD) and each person with is has unique strengths and challenges. Take Autism ambassador Alan Gardner for example,
This is what he had to say about his strength in an interview he had with Worthing Theaters
” As an autistic person, a common trait we have is a Special Interest, which either flicks on like a light switch and we’re really interested in something, or we don’t do it at all. I never had a mobile phone until three years ago, so I bought a magazine about them from W H Smith, now I’m a complete expert on them – I have people asking me for tips all of the time! So I read up on all the breeds of plant.”
I personally loved his show, having a passion for something and reaching out to help people with the same challenge and dream is so beautiful. That’s what I am all about, passion.
The ways in which people with autism learn, think and solve problems range from highly skilled to severely challenged. Some need a lot of support while others can live independently.
Autism can be diagnosed by 18 months old. Early detection usually results in better outcomes for patients. Several factors influence the development of autism and it is often accompanied by medical conditions such as gastrointestinal disorders, seizures or sleep disorders. Mental health challenges such as anxiety, depression and attention issues are also included.
Below are some characteristics of autism:
- Social communication issues
- Repetitive patterns or behaviors
Views expressed are not my own***