logo

Children and Young People on the Autism Spectrum

What is autism?

Child with autism Autism is a condition that affects how an individual communicates with, and relates to, other people. It also affects how they make sense of the world around them.

Children and young people with autism vary enormously but they all share the two 'core' features of autism:

- persistent difficulties with social communication and social interaction. For example, they may find it hard to begin or carry on a conversation, they may not understand social rules such as how far to stand from somebody else, or they may find it difficult to make friends.

- Restricted, repetitive patterns of behaviour, interests, or activities. For example, they may develop an overwhelming interest in something, they may follow inflexible routines or rituals, they may make repetitive body movements, or they may be hypersensitive to certain sounds.

Children and young people with autism also have significant strengths. These often include reliability, a good eye for detail, producing highly accurate work, an excellent memory for facts and figures, and the ability to thrive in a structured, well-organised work environment.

More about Autism


Diagnosis

Getting a diagnosis of autism can be a positive thing. It means you have an explanation for some of the difficulties your child may be experiencing, and it may also give you access to services and support.

The process of getting a diagnosis varies from country to country and sometimes even within the same country. In the UK you start the process by contacting your GP or health visitor who will then refer you on to more specialist services.

More about Diagnosis

Back To Top


Challenges

Children and young people on the autism spectrum- and their parents and carers- face many issues and challenges on a day to day basis. Some issues - such as difficulties with communication or excessive anxiety - affect many people with autism, whatever their age. Other issues - such as finding the right school - are more likely to affect children with autism.

However it is important to remember that each child with autism is a unique individual, with unique needs and abilities. Because of this, he or she will experience those issues in a unique way or may not experience them at all.

More about Issues and challenges facing children and young people on the autism spectrum

Back To Top


Interventions

There are a number of interventions - treatments and therapies - that are designed to improve the quality of life for children and young people on the autism spectrum. There are also some interventions that are designed to improve the quality of life of parents and carers.

However there is no one-size fits all solution. Each child or young person with autism is a unique individual, with unique needs and abilities. The most effective interventions are personalised to meet the unique characteristics of each individual.

More about Interventions for children and young people on the autism spectrum

Back To Top


Rights

As the parent or carer of a person on the autism spectrum living in the UK you have some legal rights, especially if your child has a formal diagnosis of autism. This is because the government considers autism to be a disability.

More about Rights for children and young people on the autism spectrum

Back To Top


Services

Many countries provide services to help children and young people on the autism spectrum, although the range and qualify of those services varies enormously between countries and may even vary within the same country.

Some services - such as some specialist schools - are specifically designed to help children with autism. Other services are designed to help a range of people, irrespective of their age or disability

More about Services for children and young people on the autism spectrum

Back To Top


Publications

More Publications on children and young people on the autism spectrum

Back To Top


Organisations

More Organisations and websites about children and young people on the autism spectrum

Back To Top


Forums for Parents/Carers

More Autism forums

Back To Top


National Institute for Health and Care Excellence

NICE (the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence) is a UK agency which provides national guidance and advice to improve health and social care.

NICE has produced a range of clinical guidance on the topic of children and young people on the autism spectrum

More about NICE: Guidance on Children and Young People with Autism

Back To Top


Other Resources

Please see Useful Resources on Autism for a list of additional resources inc.apps, blogs, events, journals, podcasts and videos.

Back To Top


Related Pages

Quick link:
http://researchautism.net/children-and-young-people
Updated
15 Aug 2016