Five Types of Autism

Autism is a disease that affects about 1 in every 150 children.  Symptoms usually appear when children are very young and are usually diagnosed by the time children are about 3 years old.  There are cases when diagnosis comes much later, however, the younger a child is when diagnosed, the greater chance they have at overcoming or at least controlling their symptoms.

The five types of autism are part of what is called the autism spectrum disorder.  They all have their own set of symptoms upon which a diagnosis can be made.  In addition, all individuals with autism are unique and so are their symptoms. 

There are various treatments for autism which include behavioral therapy, medication, education and even special diet.  These treatments can be used alone or in combination with one another depending on the child and the symptoms.

The most common type of autism is Autistic Disorder.  It affects learning, behavior and socialization and can be mild to severe. 

Pervasive Development Disorder – Not Otherwise Specified (PDD-NOS) is a milder form of Autistic Disorder and is often used to diagnose children whose symptoms do not fit into the typical categories of autism.

Asperger Syndrome is often considered “high functioning” autism, since its symptoms are much milder than Autistic Disorder symptoms.  In fact, children with Asperger Syndrome usually begin speaking at the same age as other children speak.  They quite often have above average intelligence.

Childhood Disintegrative Disorder is a unique type of autism where the child begins to learn language and other skills normally and then begins to lose those skills and becomes autistic.  In many cases the child loses only part of the skills, but in other cases all of the skills are lost.

Rett syndrome is also a unique type of autism which is only found in girls.  They begin to develop normally but gradually lose social skills and communication between the ages of 1 and 4.  One obvious symptom is that hand use gradually declines into repetitive motions only. 

Much research is being conducted to try to develop effective ways to address and manage these symptoms, and there has been success in some areas.  With autism becoming more well-known there are concerted efforts being made to address all 5 types of autism continue trying to find answers to lingering questions regarding causes and treatment for all five types.

Entry Filed under: Common Symptoms

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