Here are some things to consider doing. Some items may not be applicable to you.
_1 in 88 children in the U.S. has been identified as having an autism spectrum disorder according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC): CDC.com_
The prevalence of autism spectrum disorders (ASD) in a sample country (South Korea) is 2.64%, or approximately 1 in 38 children according to a study funded by autismspeaks.org and published in the American Journal of Psychiatry on May 9, 2011.
On Feb. 2, 2010, the British medical journal The Lancet formally retracted a study which had linked the measles, mumps and rubella vaccine to autism and gastrointestinal problems. More info at msn.com
A Norwegian study of 85,000 children found that "women who took folic acid supplements before and during pregnancy were about 40% less likely to have a baby later diagnosed with autism." More info at USAToday.com.
If your child has one or more of the following symptoms, consider asking a doctor to evaluate your child for possible autism:
- Repetitive behaviors
- Obsessive interest in certain things
- Avoidance of eye contact with people
- Repetitive rocking, twirling, etc.
As a baby:
- Unresponsive to people
- Tendency to focus on one item for a long period of time
- Low sensitivity to pain
- High sensitivity to sound, touch, etc.
- Resistance to being touched (especially to being hugged)
As an infant:
- Slow to start speaking
- Refers to themself by name vice "me" or "I"
By one year old:
- Not responding to their name
- Lack of happy expressions
- Lack of babbling
- Problems establishing eye contact
- Staring for a long time at items which aren’t moving
As a child:
- Difficulty making friends
- Difficulty starting or carrying on conversations
- Lack of imaginative play
- Unusual and/or repetitive use of language
- Difficulties with social interactions
- Difficulties with communication (verbal and nonverbal)
- Deisre to adhere to certain routines
- Failure to respond to their name
- Difficulties determining what others think or feel
- Difficulties interpreting social cues (e.g., tone of voice, facial expressions)
- Lack of empathy
- Self-abusive actions (e.g., biting, head-banging)
- Difficulties playing with other children
- Speaking in a singing voice
- Often speaks about the same topics over and over again
For more info:
- Dealing With Autism
- The Parenting Autism Resource Guide
- Complete Autism Package
- Essential Guide To Autism
- National Institutes of Health