So… What is ASD?

AutismWhat is ASD?

ASD is an acronym which stands for “Autism Spectrum Disorder”. It covers a wide range of disorders, such as Asperger’s, autism, and Rett Syndrome. ASD is, as the name suggests, a spectrum, and there’s often no clear definition between Asperger’s and high-functioning autism, especially in adults. There are many different autistic traits, and no one person exhibits them all, and no two people have the same traits at all the same severity. Some of the most common traits include difficulty in reading social cues, sensitivity to light and/or sound (also called “Sensory Integration Disorder”), fascination or obsession with certain topics, and resistance to change.

Who has ASD?

Everyone.

No, seriously. The Autism Spectrum is a spectrum, as I’ve said. It’s a spectrum which goes all the way from completely NT (neuro-typical) at one end, to severely autistic or Rett’s at the other. This means that everyone is on the spectrum; it’s just a matter of whether they’re at the right place on it to be classified as having autism or Asperger’s.

Most statistics agree that around 1 in every 100 people has an Autism Spectrum Disorder.

What causes ASD?

It depends who you ask. There are countless different theories, ranging from the mundane to the absurd. The most common two theories are vaccinations and genetics. Seriously, the ASD community is full of vaccine conspiracy theorist mothers.

Is there a cure for ASD?

No. There are a lot of “treatments” and “therapies”, all designed to make the ASD individual act more neuro-typical and easier for an NT to relate to, but there’s no “cure” for ASD. Personally, I don’t think there needs to be. That’s not to say I object to treatments – I mean, if therapy helps a person learn to talk, to communicate with the NTs we’re surrounded by, and to live a better and more independent life, then that’s all very well. But saying that ASD is something which needs to be “cured” or gotten rid of… That is offensive, I can’t understand it.

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