Autism Resources

Autism Characteristics

Therapy room at Lighthouse Autism Center with toys on a table with blue chairs and book shelves above

Definitions, Signs, and Associations of Autism Spectrum Disorder

Autism, as defined by the Autism Society of America, is a complex and lifelong developmental disability that appears early in childhood and affects the individual’s social and communication skills, self-regulatory behaviors, and relationships. The characteristics of autism and the intensity of symptoms can vary depending on the individual. Therefore, autism is referred to as a “spectrum disorder.” The first signs of autism generally emerge between 24 and 36 months of age, and there is no single-known cause of the disability. In the most recent study performed by the CDC, 1 in every 36 children are diagnosed with autism. Furthermore, boys are four times more likely to be diagnosed than girls. (

Early Signs of Autism

Recognizing the initial signs of autism can lead to an earlier diagnosis and early intervention for children with autism.

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