When can autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) be detected?
ASDs can often be detected as early as 18 months. Research shows that early intervention can greatly improve a child’s development.
How can Autism be diagnosed?
Presently, we don’t have a medical test that can diagnose autism. Instead, specially trained physicians and psychologists administer autism-specific behavioral evaluations. Often parents are the first to notice that their child is showing unusual behaviors such as failing to make eye contact, not responding to his or her name or playing with toys in unusual, repetitive ways.
What treatments are effective?
There is no single treatment protocol for all children with autism, but most individuals respond best to highly structured behavioral programs. The National Institute of Child Health and Human Development lists Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) among the recommended treatment methods for autism spectrum disorders. It is highly recommended and proven by research that Early Intervention produces positive results.
Speech and Occupational therapy are also known to enhance communication as well as day to day functioning.