Congratulations! You’re going to have a baby soon-that’s great. As a parent, you will want your baby to be healthy and free of any concerns and health conditions whatsoever, and will probably do anything it takes you to ensure your baby’s happiness.
You may have some vague idea about autism, but if you’re pregnant, it’s now time to understand what this condition really is, how it can affect your baby, and how you can detect it in the first place!
Read on… we’ve put down a compact yet concise package of all you need to know about autism.
What is Autism?
Simply put, autism is a developmental disability that affects millions of children around the world every year-sounds scary right? Well, experts believe that this neurological disorder affects the brain function of children, and has an impact on the child’s communications and social interaction skills.
Kids suffering from autism tend to find it difficult to interact with people and often face troubles during schooling. Thankfully, autism presents itself within just the first three years of the baby’s life, which makes early treatment possible.
Detecting Signs of Autism in your Baby:
It is of utmost importance for you, as a parent, to note the developmental activities of your child. Though regular visits to the paediatrician could be more than helpful, you too, need to intervene and understand the developments in your baby.
Here is our guide for some common signs and symptoms found in babies suffering from autism, characterized by the baby’s age.
a. By 3 Months:
- According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, a baby suffering from autism may show the following signs less than 3 months of age.
- She doesn’t smile at people
- She doesn’t respond to loud, sudden noises
- She doesn’t make an attempt to speak
- She doesn’t react to new faces
- She finds trouble holding or grasping objects
- She doesn’t follow moving objects with her eyes
b. By 7 Months:
- The most common signs and symptoms observed in a baby suffering from autism at around 7 months of age can be listed down as follows.
- She doesn’t display affection towards you
- She doesn’t laugh, smile or make squealing noises
- She doesn’t turn her head to look at you
- She doesn’t try to reach out for objects
- She doesn’t try to attract your attention towards her by certain actions
- She rarely shows interest in any activities such as peek-a-boo games
- She doesn’t respond at any sudden event
c. By 12 Months:
- If your baby is autistic, she will probably display the following signs and symptoms as she nears 12 months of age.
- She doesn’t make an attempt to speak, or use single words
- She rarely crawls
- She doesn’t stand even when supported
- She doesn’t point out to any objects that she may find fascinating
- She doesn’t wave, jump or shake her head
Myths about Autism:
Since autism is a complex mental health condition, most people often develop certain misconceptions about the condition. Here we’ve listed down some myths about autism which may help you understand the condition better.
Just like any other individual, a person suffering from autism experiences love, pain, happiness and sadness, even though they may not express their feelings openly.
Not all autistic people are blessed with some form of ‘unique gift,’ although, a good number of people suffering from autism do have high IQs and certain unique talents.
If you do notice any of these signs in your baby, make sure you visit your paediatrician to confirm if your baby does have autism. Thanks to innovations in science and technology, autism is now easily dealt with. Your baby will be her cheerful self again- don’t worry!