Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) refers to a group of developmental disabilities that includes:
-Pervasive Developmental Disorder
-Childhood Disintegrative Disorder
ASD is on a spectrum, as there can be varying degrees, combinations and prevalence of symptoms. ASD can develop in both boys and girls within the first three years of life and is characterized by poor social interaction skills, as well as impairments with verbal and nonverbal communication. Individuals diagnosed with Autism also display interests and behaviours that are limited and repetitive.
Autism can be assessed using standardized measures based on medical assessments, as well as observation of social behaviours, cognitive functioning, and development across multiple settings, such as a teacher at school or by a parent at home.
Treatment for Autism Spectrum Disorders
While treatments are not used to cure ASD, they are used to help manage some of the symptoms. In some cases, medication may be prescribed; however, therapeutic treatments are used to help manage the severity of the symptoms and also teach strategies and coping skills. The most common therapeutic treatments for ASD include behavioural interventions, such as Applied Behaviour Analysis (ABA) or Intensive Behavioural Intervention (IBI)
Additional Resources for Autism Spectrum Disorder:
Autism Society of Canada: