Autism Awareness Month

April is Autism Acceptance Month. The recognition raises awareness about autism acceptance and promotes inclusion and connectedness for people with autism. Social and community support can help people with autism achieve optimal health and reach their full potential

Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a developmental disability caused by differences in the brain. Some people with ASD have a known difference, such as a genetic condition. Other causes are not yet known. Scientists believe there are multiple causes of ASD that act together to change the most common ways people develop. We still have much to learn about these causes and how they impact people with ASD.

Autism is a lifelong condition, which becomes noticeable in early childhood, affecting the brain’s growth and development. Every person with ASD is different to another and has their own way of seeing the world, which makes them interesting and unique. Some of the challenges people with ASD may experience includes:

  • Challenges with communication and interacting with others
  • Repetitive and different behaviours, moving their bodies in different ways
  • Very strong interests in one topic or subject
  • Unusual reactions to what they see, hear, smell, touch or taste
  • Preference for routines and dislike change

Many people with ASD have wonderful strengths and offer unique ways of seeing the world which is hugely beneficial to our society. However, many individuals are also adversely affected and may experience social isolation, bullying, other mental health conditions (such as anxiety and depression), unemployment, and increased risk for homelessness.

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