Autism is defined as a persistent developmental disorder that impacts normal working of brain characterized by difficulty in communication and social interaction (Atwood, 2012). Other key characteristics associated with autistic behavior include restrictive, repetitive and stereotypical patterns of behaviors, interests and activities (Atwood, 2012). This developmental disorder is usually detected within the first three years of an individual’s life (Atwood, 2012).
Autism United is a dedicated body that is working tirelessly to promote the cause of autism in the United States (Autism United, 2012). Every year on 2nd of April autism awareness day is celebrated in the United Sates (Autism United, 2012). Garreth Dickson, founder of Autism United is of the view that one positive aspect of creating autism awareness is that it greatly furthers the cause of finding a treatment and possible prevention methods for the disease (Autism United, 2012). Another helpful feature of creating autism awareness is that a number of misconceptions existing in the minds of people regarding the disease are dispelled. Creating autism awareness also ensures that people are better aware of the exact reasons behind this developmental disorder (Autism United, 2012).
Creating autism awareness ensures that people are aware that:
Autism is not an emotional or mental health disorder as is commonly believed. It is actually a biological illness that influences the normal growth and development of human brain (Salahi, 2008).Advances made in medical sciences have ensured that treatments are created to improve autistic children abilities through early intervention and Applied Behavioral Analysis techniques yet no method has been developed till date that can be singled out for curing children and adults suffering from autism (Salahi, 2008).The belief that autism results in children with cold, uncaring parents propagated in 1940 by Austrian doctor Bruno Bettelheim has been rendered as wrong. Director of UCLA’s center for autism research, Dr. Daniel Geshwind, opines that most of scientific research studies done for diagnosing the causes of autism reveal a strong genetic predisposition in most of the patients with autism and no evidence has been found that links autism to how the children were raised by the parents (Salahi, 2008).Another common misconception is that individuals with autism always have some hidden talent, Robert W. Marion, M.D., director Children’s Evaluation and Rehabilitation Center (CERC) at Albert Einstein College of Medicine clarifies that though a minor group of individuals with autism have extraordinary skills a condition referred to as Savantism, most of them do not possess any special skills or talent (Salahi, 2008).The opinion that all autistic people have trouble forming social relations is wrong according to Dr. Marion, he states that although some autistic people on the severe end of spectrum have difficulty entering into social relationship most other autistic children have friends and easily form close relationships (Salahi, 2008).
Autism is a complicated disorder, but the people suffering from autism can be as functional as any other normal person, they have all the right to love and be loved, obtain education, get a good job and live their life peacefully.
Atwood, M. (2012). Living With Autism. ABDO.
Autism United. (2012). Welcome to Autism United. Retrieved September 3, 2012, from Autism United: http://www.autismunited.org/
Salahi, L. (2008, October 23). 10 Myths About Autism. Retrieved September 3, 2012, from abc news: http://abcnews.go.com/Health/ColdandFluNews/story?id=6089162&page=1#.UEhQfaDfiSp
Tagged as: Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Applied behavior analysis, Autism, autism awareness, Autism spectrum, Bruno Bettelheim
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