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1. What is autism
Autism is a neural and behavioural developmental dissociation order leading to the inability of a child to interact and communicate with others. It is also known as autism spectrum disorder due to the wide range of symptoms seen on this spectrum.
2. When can autism be detected?
The symptoms of autism may appear in the first three years of life. Some children may show signs at the time of birth and some between 12 to 18 months, although it is hard to detect autism before 24 months.
3. What are the signs and symptoms of autism?
Autism has a range of symptoms like lack of social skills, lack of interest in interacting with people, unawareness of surroundings, inability to adjust with changes in the routine, avoiding eye contact, repeating the same action, lack of response when others talk to him/her and difficulty in communicating their needs.
4. Why is making eye contact difficult for autistic persons?
A person with autism has impaired social skills and difficulty in verbal and nonverbal communication; hence, it is difficult to make eye contact with them.
5. What causes autism?
There is no clear cause of autism, but there are several suspected reasons like (1) long term exposure of a pregnant woman to certain drugs like antiseizure drugs, chemicals like alcohol and metabolic problems like obesity and diabetes (2) untreated metabolic disorder phenylketonuria in babies and (3) rubella or German measles.