Child autism

Autism in children

The dictionary defines autism as a psychiatric disorder that occurs in childhood and retards the neurological development of the child. It is best diagnosed by the age of three.

What are its symptoms?
Autistic children face difficulties while conversing and interacting with people. Symptoms of the disease vary from mild to extreme. The retarded neurological development basically affects the behavior of the child which goes more towards the aggressive side. The following are some of such behavioral patterns:
The child begins to find pleasure in solitude.
The child reacts aggressively to normal touches and smells and general noises.
The child begins to resist cuddling and other gestures of affection.
The child finds it difficult to interact and communicate.
The child exhibits tantrums.
The child runs away from eye contact.

Besides these abnormal behavioral patterns, autistic children usually have an impaired language development. They face problems while expressing themselves. Their speech patterns are improper and lack intonation and involve repetition and expression. The mental processes of the child become slow and face difficulty in learning and understanding things.

What are its causes?
The cause of the disease is unknown. Several rounds of research have been conducted on the disease and its causes but the latter still remains undiscovered and unidentified. The disease can be inherited; it can be due to genetic or environmental reasons or also due to infections.

What is the treatment available for autism?
Autism treatment may vary from child to child depending upon the severity of the disease suffered by the child. They need to be given proper behavioral therapy to improve their language skills. They need special treatment as they have a tendency to go aggressive and find problems in understanding.

How to teach autistic children?
Although there is no one best treatment for all patients but the keyword is "patience" coupled with a lot of understanding of the child's state of mind.
The teaching procedure should involve a sequence of easy steps, active engagements of the child's interests by means of highly productive activities. The classroom should be such that it is comfortable and convenient for the child.
The teacher should try and avoid long verbal communications. It may be a difficulty for the patients trying to remember the sequence of instructions. If possible, the instructions can be written down.
Some autistic patients have the capability to sing better than they can speak. They may respond better if words and sentences are sung to them. Some patients with an abnormal sensitivity to sound can respond much better if the teacher talks to them softly.

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