In researching for an ongoing project, we spent the last couple of months sponging up information on everything autism-related. As we continue to learn, we would like to facilitate your first steps into understanding the complicated world of autism.
What is autism?
The fastest growing developmental disability in the U.S., autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a neurobiological disorder that affects the development of social and communication skills. Typically, autism begins affecting a child before the age of three, and while the condition can improve with the aid of various treatments and therapies, autism cannot be cured.
Unfortunately, many mysteries and grey areas surround the disorder. There is no universal explanation of autism. Every case is different in onset, symptoms, severity, and treatments, hence the common use of the term spectrum. Researchers are left to speculate whether the cause is biological, environmental or a mixture of the two. It’s no wonder that this disorder’s support ribbon is comprised of puzzle pieces, as researchers are constantly searching for answers to add to the whole picture.
Why do we care?
Beyond the mystery surrounding the disorder, its rapidly increasing prevalence has caught our attention. Autism has gone from affecting 1 in 150 children to 1 in 88 children in less than a decade. In fact, more children will be diagnosed with autism this year than AIDS, diabetes and cancer combined.
Awareness is the first step in defense against autism. The more CB&A learns about the disorder, the more passionate we become about spreading the word. Our hopes are to educate you as we educate ourselves, and attempt to comprehend the mystery that is autism.