Autism & Developmental Disabilities

Autism and Developmental Disabilities characteristics of

Autism is a complex developmental disability that typically appears during the first three years of life and affects a person’s ability to communicate and interact with others. Autism is defined by a certain set of behaviors and is a “spectrum disorder” that affects individuals differently and to varying degrees. There is no known single cause for autism but recent research has indicated that chromosomal abnormality might play a role.

What are the typical signs/symptoms of autism in a child:

Lack of delay in spoken language
Repetitive use of language and or / motor mannerisms (e.g., hand flapping, twirling objects)
Little or no eye contact
Lack of interest in peer relationships
Lack of spontaneous or make-believe play
Persistent fixation on parts of objects

Other Developmental Disabilities:
Intellectual Disabilities
Cerebral Palsy
Epilepsy and other conditions found to be closely related to intellectual disabilities. The disability has to have occurred before the age of 18, been determined to be a substantial handicap and continue throughout that person’s life.
Information on autism causes and characteristics provided by Autism Society of America and California Department of Developmental Disabilities