Don’t Be Too Late to Know About Autism

Morinaga Platinum ♦ 1 May 2017

Data from Central Statistic Organization (Badan Pusat Statistik), 2,4 million Indonesian suffer from autism in 2010. At that time, the total number of Indonesian citizen is 237 million. So, about one in 100 babies is born with autism.

Autism or Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is a neurological disturbance that influence your children’s ability to communicate verbally and nonverbally, interfere with social interaction, showing repetitive function, and show interest in unusual objects.

It is important for parents to recognize the early sign of autism because this condition is not reversible. However, there are certain measures that can be done to help children with autism, to deal with their daily activity, and reaching their optimal potential.

The cause of autism remains a mystery even up to this time. Experts still do some studies to find the risk factors of autism. Nevertheless, experts conclude that there are some risk factors that contribute to the occurrence of autism, which include genetic problem, rubella infection during pregnancy, and mother’s age during conception more than 40 years old. The notion that Measles, Mumps, and Rubella vaccine is associated with autism has been rebutted by World Health Organization.

As the number of autism increase, you need to be cautious and beware of autism sign. According to literature from American Academy of Pediatrics, the sign of autism can be seen even from the age of 18 months, which include:

  • Lack of response when being called
  • Your baby also does not turn his head away when asked to see a certain object.
  • Your baby rarely babbles (baby start to babble at 12 months of age)
  • Your baby never points at an object after 12 months old
  • Your baby start smiling late as compared to other babies
  • Your baby does not say a word until 16 months
  • Your baby fails to form two words after 24 years old
  • Your baby fails to form eye contact
  • Your baby shows excessive interest in solid object, like electronic object, keys, and less interest in soft object like doll, blanket etc.
  • Your baby does not show any interest in social interaction, to his peers or adults.

If you spot some of these signs in your children’s behavior, you might bring your children for further examination. You might need to consult with some experts like: psychologist, pediatric neurologist, psychiatrist etc.

Autism is usually diagnosed based on the children’s symptoms. Some examinations are required to confirm the diagnosis of autism, such as:

  • Physical examination and family history to eliminate the possibility of other diseases.
  • Skill and development observation. Your children might be asked to follow a certain instruction and being observed. This examination includes speaking test, behavior examination, test to examine thinking pattern and social interaction.

There is currently no cure for autism, but there are services and therapy to help children with autism. Some important aspects of their life need to be the core of therapy, like communication skill, interaction, cognitive, and academic function. The purpose of therapy is to optimize their potential to the highest level possible.

If your children suffer from autism, do not be pessimistic. Early detection is important so that your children can get early intervention and their function can be optimized.