Come Be a Warrior for Autism with Troy University

Sunday, April 2, 2107, is World Autism Awareness Day (WAAD). The purpose of WAAD is to increase awareness of autism as well as to increase early diagnosis and early intervention. Troy University’s Applied Behavior Analysis Club will celebrate the unique talents and skills of individuals with autism and warmly welcomes families and individuals affected by autism, educators and treatment providers and the community to the inaugural Troy University Autism Walk from 2 to 4 p.m. on April 2 beginning at the Bibb Graves quad off of University Avenue on the Troy Campus. The walk will occur rain or shine and should take about 15 minutes to complete. There will be family-friendly activities such as bubbles and face painting!

All profit from the Autism Warrior Campaign will be used to fund scholarships for individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) to receive therapeutic services.

Autism Walk Registration

 

Autism: Basic Facts

Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is a developmental disability that affects 1 in every 68 children. The cause of autism is not known. ASD is about 4.5 times more common in boys than girls and occurs in all racial, ethnic and socioeconomic groups. People with ASD may communicate, interact with others, behave and learn differently from other people. Some people with autism are affected mildly and need minimal assistance in their daily lives while others with autism are severely affected and will need a lot of assistance throughout their lives. Signs of autism begin in early childhood and can be reliably diagnosed by age two.

Treatment

Currently, there is no cure for ASD. However, people with autism can be greatly assisted by therapy to help them learn to talk, care for themselves and interact with others. The goal of therapy is to help individuals with ASD become more independent. Research shows that early intervention given before age three can greatly improve a child’s development; however, a person with autism can benefit from therapy across their lifetime.

  • There are medical treatments that can alter specific behaviors, but there is no medical treatment that targets all of the symptoms of ASD.
  • There are popular, fad treatments that are not based on science. They include special diets, chelation (a treatment to remove heavy metals like lead from the body), biologicals (e.g., secretin) or body-based systems (e.g., deep pressure). Although there might be testimonials supporting these, there is no scientific evidence of their effectiveness.
  • Individuals with ASD can benefit from traditional approaches such as special education services, speech therapy, physical therapy and occupational therapy.
  • The gold standard of treatment for ASD is called applied behavior analysis (ABA). There is considerable scientific research supporting the effectiveness of ABA.

Signs and Symptoms of Autism

  • Not responding to their name by 12 months
  • Avoiding eye contact and wanting to be alone
  • Not playing pretend games (e.g., feeding a doll) by 18 months
  • Delayed speech or language skills
  • Trouble understanding others’ feelings
  • Trouble talking about their own feelings
  • Obsessive interests
  • Becoming upset with minor changes
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