*Because autism is a spectrum disorder, each person with autism has a distinct set of strengths and challenges. The way in which people with autism learn, think, and problem-solve can range from highly skilled to severely challenged. Early intervention can improve learning, communication and social skills, as well as underlying brain development. Below are a few facts about spectrum disorder from www.autismspeaks.org.

  • An estimated one-third of people with autism are nonverbal.
  • Nearly half of those with autism wander or bolt from safety.
  • Drowning remains a leading cause of death for children with autism and accounts for approximately 90 percent of deaths associated with wandering or bolting by those age 14 and younger.
  • Nearly two-thirds of children with autism between the ages of 6 and 15 have been bullied.
  • Nearly 28 percent of 8-year-olds with ASD have self-injurious behaviors. Head banging, arm biting and skin scratching are among the most common.
  • Nearly half of 25-year-olds with autism have never held a paying job.
  • Research demonstrates job activities that encourage independence reduce autism symptoms and increase daily living skills.
  • Over the last two decades, extensive research has asked whether there is any link between childhood vaccinations and autism. The results of this research are clear: Vaccines do not cause autism.

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