Definition: Autism is a general term for a group of complex disorders of brain development. These disorders are characterized, in varying degrees, by difficulties in social interaction, verbal and nonverbal communication and repetitive behaviours. In recent times all autism disorders were merged into one umbrella diagnosis of Autism spectrum disorders (ASD).
Symptoms and Treatment: Autism spectrum disorders (ASD) are characterized by social-interaction difficulties, communication challenges and a tendency to engage in repetitive behaviors. However, symptoms and their severity vary widely across these three core areas. Taken together, they may result in relatively mild challenges for someone on the high functioning end of the autism spectrum. Each child or adult with autism is unique so, each autism intervention plan should be tailored to address specific needs. Intervention can involve behavioral treatments, medicines or both. Many persons with autism have additional medical conditions such as sleep disturbance, seizures and gastrointestinal (GI) distress. Addressing these conditions can improve attention, learning and related behaviors.
Statistics: Statistics of Autism in Netherlands were analysed as Autism research is important for individuals currently affected with ASD, as well as for those in whom the symptoms might be prevented. However, research on ASD is also important for understanding the larger class of neurodevelopmental disorders. Childhood disabilities are increasingly falling into the realm of behavioral/neurologic (versus physical) and there are likely some commonalities in the etiologies and treatments of the conditions. A collaborative, systematically identified and implemented autism strategic research plan is essential and requires a dynamic, cohesive process that streamlines research moving from bench to bedside (and back).