Autism presents many different challenges in the areas of communication, cognition, social skills, social interaction, repetitive behaviors, dietary/digestive disorders and sensory processing. These challenges differ in intensity/severity in each individual diagnosed with ASD and can affect many areas of development and daily living.
At this time we do not know the causes and therefore have no cure. Parents and advocates lobby everywhere and constantly for an increase in research to find answers for this disorder that affects up to 1 in 50 in boys. A major challenge with this effort is to try to get advocates speaking in a united voice when some feel they are fighting very different battles and not being heard.
There are some very good therapies and strategies that can definitely make a difference. We know that early and intensive intervention for all areas of need is crucial and very beneficial. The challenge is always funding for what is usually a great expense.
If autism is affecting nearly 1 in 80 families you would think people would be more aware, but not so. Everyone can help. If you are aware, share what you know with others. If you are not aware ask and seek out ways to learn more about this disorder that could easily affect your family or extended family at any time.
MY CHALLENGE FOR YOU is to contribute a comment here, asking questions to increase awareness or sharing an experience/thoughts/resources that will help others learn about ASD. Perhaps tell us what you are doing or would like to do to increase awareness, understanding and acceptance of those with ASD and their families.