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Autism is a disorder of the brain that causes a lifelong development disability primarily affecting the communication and social abilities of people Symptoms of the condition are evident either from birth or may begin appear after a period of normal development but definitely by the time the child is three years old In the following paper autism its conditions and research findings will be stated as well as discussed in the case of 8-year old Austin Autism is known as a spectrum disorder because the severity of symptoms ranges from a mild learning and social disability to a severe impairment with multiple problems and highly unusual behaviour The disorder may occur alone or with accompanying problems such as seizures Autism is not a rare disorder being the third most common developmental disorder more common than Downs Syndrome Fine 2001 p1 17 Autism is found throughout the world in families of all economic social and racial backgrounds Typically about 20 in a population of 10000 people will be autistic or have autistic symptoms 80 of those affected by autism are boys Hoffman 1996 A child with high functioning autism may have a normal or high IQ and may attend a regular school and obtain a job later on in life However this person may have difficulty expressing himself as well as not know how to interact with other people Moderately and more seriously affected children with autism will vary tremendously Some autistic children do not ever develop speech while others may develop speech but still have difficulty using language to communicate Often there is an unusual speech pattern where the autistic child may repeat or echo whatever is said to them echolalia repeating a word over and over reversing you and I when asking for something and speaking only to express needs rather than emotions A child with autism looks just like any other child but has distinctive behavior patterns A child who
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