Autism Awareness Month

Understanding Autism  

This past April we recognized Autism Awareness Month. It was first established in 1970 by the Autism Society. Their goal is to bring awareness to autism spectrum disorder (ASD) by getting better support, promoting acceptance, and ensuring inclusion.

Nearly 1 in 59 children in the United States have been diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder. ASD is a neuro-developmental condition that affects how people communicate with others. As a spectrum condition, autism affects each individual in a variety of ways and degrees of severity. Typically, a person with autism struggles to understand social cues, which makes it hard for them to engage with others. This can appear as poor eye contact, compulsive behavior, repetitive actions, and keen interest in a specific topic. Treatments usually include speech and occupational therapy, and the best way to lessen severity is through early intervention. Often, an early diagnosis on the spectrum can enable better educational support in schools and treatment programs that account for each person’s specific needs.

How can I get Involved?

  • Look for local activities to support awareness
    • Often movie theaters provide sensory sensitive movie screenings, and you can find different walks in cities near you.
  • Share new ideas on how to create a more inclusive environment
    • Make an impact at a business or school near you!
  • Tell your stories and experiences
    • There are plenty of support groups online and on social media. Maybe you can help someone going through a similar experience, or they can help you.

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