Introduction/Definition of Topic
spectrum disorder is defined as a range of conditions characterized by
challenges with social skills, repetitive behaviors, speech and nonverbal
communication, as well as unique strengths and differences (autismspeaks.org).
The CDC (The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) claims as 1 and 68
children in the United States will be diagnosed with Autism. The causes of
Autism are not known but research suggests that both genes and environment play
important roles. Some children and adults with Autism are fully able to perform
all activities of daily living while others require support for basic
activities. According to the Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS), they
are doing search to gather more knowledge about the brain/nervous system, that
can possibly help reduce Autism in individuals.
Relevance of Topic to Family Tree
Growing up in my
household, I lived with my single mother, grandparents, and my uncle. My uncle,
Eddie Castro Jr., was diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder at the age of 3.
Eddie is currently 28 years of age and has been living with disorder for much
of his life. My uncle is not part of the percentage of people that can function
at a performable level, to complete daily activities. My family is his support
cast and provides for him every single way possible. My family helps with everything
from making his food to helping him be socially interactive. I also have two
younger cousins that have been diagnosed with this disorder, so this disorder somewhat
runs in my family. Autism is very serious disorder and that’s why my family and
friends gather each year in the Autism-Speaks walk, raising money in order to working
towards finding a cure.
Common Signs and Symptoms
signs and symptoms are very noticeable at a young age/very early in having
Autism Spectrum Disorder. People diagnosed with Autism may become overly
focused on certain objects, fail to make eye contact regularly, and possibly
have obsessive interests. Social skills are the most important sign of Autism
because they tend to keep to themselves and not have a full understanding of
social norms. Signs such as, communication also is a big red flag of Autism.
People diagnosed with Autism tend to have delayed speech and language skills,
and also tends to give unrelated answers to questions. Those that are diagnosed
could also might use language in unusual ways and could possibly not be able to
put words into real sentences (most common in younger aged patients).
There is no known
single cause for Autism, but many believe that it is generally caused by abnormalities
in the brain structure. According to more conducted research, scientists also
believe that both genetics and environment play a role in Autism Spectrum
Disorder. People that are diagnosed show differences in the shape of the brain.
While no one specific gene has been identified, researchers and scientists are
still looking for irregularities. Some researchers believe that a group of
unstable genes may affect the development of the brain, that can possibly
result in Autism. In a family with one autistic child, there is 5% chance of having
another child that obtains this disorder. This disorder is still under a large
amount of research and new information should be founded as time progresses.