We want to wish anyone and everyone a happy Autistic Pride Day! Today, we celebrate neurodiversity and people with autism spectrum disorder who are proud to be autistic, and show the world who they are! We are so proud of you for who you are, your accomplishments, your triumphs and even your failures. You have so much to be proud of and raise a glass to you!
In times past, autism has been widely misunderstood and thought to be something that required curing, but in actuality, autism is a different way of looking at the world, which is why we love to call it AWEtism. It takes raising awareness to help people see that autism is a shift in perspective that while we may not understand, we can support and help integrate into the societal norm. This is why the term “autism awareness” has been replaced with “autism acceptance.”
If you are new to autism and wonder what it is, I hope these next talking points will help you to see the wonder and awe of AWEtism.
What is autism?
Autism is considered a neurodevelopment disorder in some people that, while having a wide range of characteristics (referred to as a spectrum,) tends to have problems with communication, social interactions, and repetitive behaviors.
How and when is Autism diagnosed?
Autism has a very wide spectrum of symptoms of mild to severe. Autism is typically diagnosed between 2-3 years of age but can be diagnosed as early at 18 months.
What are some signs of Autism?
While it’s important to note that due to the wide range in the spectrum, not every child has every possible symptom, however to help, we’ve narrowed it down to some of the most common signs.
• Makes little to no eye contact or does not hold eye contact for long.
• May not speak any words by 15 months.
• Their facial expressions may not be appropriate based on context.
• Less likely to show concern or empathy for others.
• May be very sensitive to lights, sounds, or textures.
• Has difficulty transitioning between activities or being out of routine.
• May flap hands or walk on their toes for a long time.
• May not respond when you call their name.
What should I do if I think my child may have autism?
If you think your child may have autism, reach out to a trusted office in your area. There are many great resources out there to help individuals with autism. If you’re in the Jacksonville, FL or St. Augustine, FL area, reach out to Therapeutic Expressions to request an appointment.
Happy Autistic Pride Day!