Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a complex condition that affects individuals differently. While there is no cure for autism, there are treatments available that can help manage symptoms and support development and learning. ABA therapy is the most widely accepted approach to managing autism, but psychological approaches such as cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) can also be beneficial. Treatment plans should be tailored to the individual's specific needs and may include behavioral interventions, other therapies, medications, or a combination of these.
Research into autism is ongoing, with studies looking at the biological basis of autism, the impact of its genes on diagnosis, the ability to detect autism during pregnancy, and the future of therapies derived from cord blood. It is important to remember that only 2 percent of autism research dollars in the United States go towards life expectancy issues and 5 percent towards services. Katarzyna Chawarska, professor of child psychiatry at Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut, is studying the signs of autism in infants. She is also looking into why girls and people of color are diagnosed later in life, why autism has so many co-occurring conditions, why people with autism tend to react differently to medications, and why they engage in self-injurious behaviors such as head-banging and skin scratching.
The sooner children with autism spectrum disorder get help, the better their chances of successful treatment. Most treatment strategies will involve some form of speech therapy, behavioral therapy, and occupational therapy. Learning all you can about autism and participating in treatment will go a long way in helping your child.