Autism is a complex neurological developmental disability that typically lasts throughout a person’s lifetime. It occurs in all racial, ethnic, and social groups and is four times more likely to strike boys than girls.
Autism typically appears during the first three years of life and is the result of a neurological disorder which affects the normal functioning of the brain, impacting development in the areas of social interaction and communication skills. Both children and adults with autism typically show difficulties in verbal and non-verbal communication, social interactions, and leisure or play activities. It is also associated with rigid routines and repetitive behaviors, such as obsessively arranging objects or following very specific routines. Symptoms can range from very mild to quite severe.
Autism is one of five disorders that fall under the umbrella of Pervasive Developmental Disorders (PDD), a category of neurological disorders characterized by “severe and pervasive impairment in several areas of development.” It is a spectrum disorder and it affects each individual differently at varying degrees