National Experts Offer Practical Tips for Parents Concerned about Autism
Devereux, the nation’s largest non-profit providing behavioral healthcare for children, adolescents and adults with intellectual/developmental disabilities, behavioral disorders and mental illness, has been a leader in diagnosing, and caring for those with autism through quality educational, training and support services since the 1940s.
“So much is being learned about the complex and confusing world of autism,” says
Ten Tips for Parents
To that end, the experts at Devereux, through decades of work – and some of the earliest and most storied treatment of autism in the disorder’s history – have developed a list of early indicators for parents to watch for in their young children. These signs are not meant as diagnostic tools, but rather as guidelines to help parents direct their thoughts and conversations with experts. Parents should watch for:
- A child who doesn’t make eye contact, fails to show enthusiasm for caregivers as they approach, who doesn’t examine the faces of others and does not offer a social smile.
- A child who doesn’t engage in conversation with others.
- A child who does not enjoy common games that other children enjoy such as tickle games or hide-and-seek.
- A child who may not appropriately play with common toys.
- A child who engages in repetitive movements such as hand flapping.
- A child who does not imitate the vocal sounds or actions of peers or adults.
- A child who is delayed in talking, gestures and use of facial expressions.
- A child who doesn’t seem to understand others’ verbal and non-verbal communication.
- A child who had learned to talk and picked up on social skills, but seems to suddenly regress and not speak or connect with others.
- A child whose development was progressing normally and then suddenly regresses noticeably.
Parents, who may be concerned that their child shows signs of autism, should contact their pediatrician or a health professional with experience in the field of autism or developmental disabilities.
“With autism reaching alarming rates, it is crucial that families receive an accurate diagnosis so that early intervention can immediately begin,” explains Dr.
Devereux’s History with Autism
National experts, including
Devereux is the nation’s largest nonprofit provider serving children, adolescents, and adults with behavioral, mental health and intellectual/ developmental disabilities. Founded in 1912 by a