Autism is a neurological disorder that adversely affects the level of social interaction and communication skills (both verbal and non-verbal) of an individual, who also shows signs of self-stimulatory behaviour or “stims”, characterised by the repetition of body motions. Autistic individuals can also manifest unusual sensitivity to one or more sensory inputs such as smell, taste, sound and light. Sensory offensiveness is also a warning sign of ASD which is the craving for more sensory satisfaction. People with autism can also develop sharpness in a certain field of knowledge like music and maths and many other distinguishable abilities. Autism is accepted as being a lifelong condition.
Everybody at UK Autistic agrees that we would not want to change our loved ones for the world, we love them as they are; autism is a part of who they are. That is not to say we underestimate the challenges there can be, but we embrace them. The rewards of loving somebody with autism far outweigh the challenges.
There is no need to ‘cure’ autism because it is just what makes up part of an individual’s personality and there can be many traits that would be desirable to a neuro typical person, for example many autistic people have an amazing memory or are very gifted at certain things and have a strong aptitude for certain fields of knowledge as well as other positive characteristics which highlight the good side of autism compared to the challenges that come with it. The intellectual prowess of many autistic persons range from average to high and can excel in many areas of knowledge including but not limited to arts, music, mathematics, engineering and technology.
Autism as a spectrum disorder has a variety of known treatments which mostly cover therapeutic approaches rather than medical ones. These treatments include speech, developmental, occupational and behavioural therapy. The overall results of these treatments are highly positive, but these do not absolutely eradicate the disorder from a person’s life.