Autism Symptoms

Autism symptoms


Early Diagnosis and Treatment of Autism: Identifying Symptoms and Seeking Support


Autism is a developmental disorder typically diagnosed between three and four years old. However, experts suggest that it can be identified as early as twelve months old, and early intervention has been shown to yield better outcomes. Recognizing the symptoms of autism is crucial to provide timely support and intervention. This article will explore the signs for children, the importance of early diagnosis, and the available resources for families seeking assistance.

Signs of Autism

When observing children for potential signs of autism, several key indicators should be considered. These signs include:

  • Lack of Social Engagement: Children may not smile or coo as expected, and they might not respond to attempts at interaction.
  • Delayed Motor Skills: Difficulty with bottle-feeding, breastfeeding, sitting up, walking, or reaching developmental milestones within the expected timeframe.
  • Limited Eye Contact: Individuals with autism often exhibit reduced eye contact, impacting social interaction and communication.
  • Speech and Language Delays: Late onset of speech, inability to point or gesture, and challenges with expressive communication skills.
  • Unusual Behaviors: Repetitive movements, such as hand-flapping or running in circles, and the need for rigid routines or organization.

Personal Experiences

Parents and caregivers often notice these signs in their children, prompting concerns about their development. Personal accounts indicate various observations that raised red flags for autism:

  • Delayed Language Development: One parent noticed their child’s inability to communicate effectively, as their cousin, who was only a month younger, exhibited more advanced language skills.
  • Lack of Responsiveness: Another parent highlighted their child’s absence from responding to their name, a typical behavior expected in a two-year-old.
  • Regression of Skills: In some cases, children may initially display typical development but then experience a deterioration where previously acquired skills, such as sitting up or rolling over, diminish or disappear.

Importance of Early Diagnosis

Obtaining an early diagnosis of autism is crucial for several reasons:

  • Timely Intervention: Early diagnosis allows for early intervention, which has been shown to improve outcomes for children with autism. Starting treatment as soon as possible can positively impact their development and progress.
  • Access to Support Services: A formal diagnosis provides families with a clearer understanding of their child’s needs and enables access to various support services and therapies. These services, such as physical, occupational, speech, and developmental therapies, can significantly assist in addressing the challenges associated with autism.
  • Preparation for School Placement: Having a diagnosis helps families prepare their children for an appropriate school placement that can cater to their specific requirements and provide necessary accommodations and support.

Seeking a Diagnosis

Diagnosing autism can be complex and does not involve a blood test or brain scan. However, organizations like Easter Seals offer valuable assistance in this journey:

  • Free Developmental Screening: Parents can contact Easter Seals for a free developmental screening. This initial assessment helps identify potential delays and determine if further evaluation is necessary.
  • Comprehensive Evaluation: If a developmental delay is suspected, the child may be referred for a more in-depth evaluation involving multiple experts such as psychologists and pediatricians.
  • Therapeutic Services: Easter Seals provides various therapeutic services, including physical, occupational, speech, and developmental therapies, which can commence if a delay is identified.
  • Diagnostic Clinic: Children suspected of having autism may be placed on a waiting list for the Easter Seals Diagnostic Clinic. This clinic offers comprehensive evaluations to confirm or rule out an autism diagnosis.

The Value of Diagnosis

Some parents may question the necessity of a formal diagnosis if their child is already receiving appropriate treatment. However, obtaining an autism diagnosis offers several advantages:

  • Clearer Path Forward: Diagnosis gives families a clearer direction in planning their child’s future and tailoring interventions to their needs.
  • Access to Additional Services: A formal diagnosis often facilitates access to additional support services, such as specialized educational programs, therapies, and community resources.
  • Understanding and Awareness: Diagnosis helps parents and caregivers better understand their child’s condition, enabling them to provide informed support and advocate effectively on their behalf.

Improving Diagnostic Speed

Currently, the waiting list for autism diagnosis can be several months long. However, efforts are being made to expedite the process:

  • Reducing Waiting Times: Recognizing the growing demand for diagnostic services, initiatives are underway to reduce waiting times. Although predicting the exact timeline is challenging, families can expect gradual improvements in wait times in the future.

How to Seek Assistance

If you have questions about autism or want to schedule a free developmental screening for your child, you can reach out to Easter Seals for guidance and information:

By recognizing the early signs of autism, seeking timely diagnosis, and accessing appropriate support services, families can better support their children’s developmental journey and enhance their overall quality of life.

*(Disclaimer: This article is for informational purposes only and should not substitute professional medical advice. If you have concerns about your child’s development, please consult a qualified healthcare provider.)*

Here are references related to early diagnosis and treatment of autism, focusing on identifying symptoms and seeking support:


  1. Clinical impact of early diagnosis of autism on the prognosis and parent–child relationships by JH Elder, CM Kreider, SN Brasher, et al., in Psychology Research and Behavior Management, 2017. This study discusses the importance of early diagnosis and its impact on the prognosis and relationships within families. Read more.
  2. Early diagnosis of autism and impact on prognosis: a narrative review by E Fernell, MA Eriksson, C Gillberg, in Clinical Epidemiology, 2013. A comprehensive review of how early diagnosis of autism affects prognosis. Read more.
  3. Early diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder: Stability and change in clinical diagnosis and symptom presentation by W Guthrie, LB Swineford, C Nottke, et al., in the Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 2013. This article examines the stability of early ASD diagnosis over time. Read more.
  4. The importance of early identification and intervention for children with or at risk for autism spectrum disorders by LK Koegel, RL Koegel, K Ashbaugh, et al., in the International Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, 2014. Highlights the critical role of early identification and intervention. Read more.
  5. Early identification and early intervention in autism spectrum disorders: Accurate and effective? by S Camarata, in the International Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, 2014. Discusses the accuracy and effectiveness of early interventions for ASD. Read more.
  6. Autism spectrum disorders—diagnosis and management by SB Mukherjee, in The Indian Journal of Pediatrics, 2017. A comprehensive overview of the diagnosis and management strategies for ASD. Read more.
  7. Early identification of autism spectrum disorders by L Zwaigenbaum, S Bryson, N Garon, in Behavioural Brain Research, 2013. Discusses the early identification of ASD and potential biomarkers. Read more.
  8. A quarter century of progress on the early detection and treatment of autism spectrum disorder by G Dawson, R Bernier, in Development and Psychopathology, 2013. Reviews 25 years of progress in early detection and treatment of ASD. Read more.
  9. Additional considerations for the early detection and diagnosis of autism: Review of available instruments by JL Matson, RD Rieske, K Tureck, in Research in Autism Spectrum Disorders, 2011. Analyzes instruments available for early detection and diagnosis of autism. Read more.
  10. The search for a timely diagnosis: Parents’ experiences of their child being diagnosed with an Autistic Spectrum Disorder by C Mitchell, N Holdt, in the Journal of Child & Adolescent Mental Health, 2014. This study explores parents’ experiences seeking a diagnosis for their child. Read more.
  11. Clinical impact of early diagnosis of autism on the prognosis and parent–child relationships:
  12. Early Diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorder: A Review and Analysis of the Risks and Benefits:
  13. Early Identification of Autism:
  14. Early Identification and Interventions for Autism Spectrum Disorder: Executive Summary:
  15. Early Diagnosis and Intervention for Autism Spectrum Disorder: Need for Pediatrician–Child Psychiatrist Liaison:


My name is Adi, and I am the proud parent of Saar, a lively 17-year-old who happens to have autism. I have created a blog,, with the aim to share our family's journey and offer guidance to those who may be going through similar experiences. Saar, much like any other teenager, has a passion for football, cycling, and music. He is also a budding pianist and enjoys painting. However, his world is somewhat distinct. Loud sounds can be overwhelming, sudden changes can be unsettling, and understanding emotions can be challenging. Nevertheless, Saar is constantly learning and growing, and his unwavering resilience is truly remarkable.

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2 Responses

  1. This is some advice on teaching autistic children : 1. For starters, you need to know that each kid with autism is different, are looking for out his or her wants …autism

  1. 2023/04/27

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