Autism and Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) are general terms for a wide range of brain development disorders characterized by social impairments, communication difficulties, and repetitive behaviors.
Recently, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) identified that around 1 in every 68 children are diagnosed with ASD, an increase from the past 1 in 88 children in 2008.
ASD is almost 5 times more prevalent in boys with about 1 in 42 boys diagnosed compared to about 1 in 189 girls.
Wondering if your child is affected by ASD? Here is a list of red flags that may indicate that your child is at risk:
No big smiles or other warm, happy expressions by 6 months or thereafter
No back-and-forth sharing of sounds or facial expressions by 9 months
No babbling by 12 months
No back-and-forth gestures like waving, pointing, etc. by 12 months
No words by 16 months
No meaningful, 2-word phrases (not including repeating) by 24 months
Any loss of speech, babbling, or social skills at any age
Here is an easy to read infographic describing the basic facts about Autism and ASD: