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Pediatricians' Group Issues New Autism Guidelines...

The American Academy of Pediatrics has released two new reports with recommendations for identifying and managing Autism.
The reports are published in the November issue of Pediatrics; they were released Monday during the American Academy of Pediatrics annual meeting in San Francisco.
The first report, which details ways to detect autism spectrum disorders, highlights some of the earlier signs that might suggest an autism spectrum disorder.
  • A lack of warm, joyful expressions while gazing at a parent or other caregiver.
  • No back-and-forth babbling between the infant and parent beginning around 5 months of age.
  • A lack of recognition of a parent's voice or not turning when the parent says the baby's name.
  • Failure to make eye contact.
  • Delayed onset of babbling past 9 months of age.
  • No or few pre-speech gestures, such as waving or pointing.
  • Repetitive movements with objects.
Later, as speech develops and these disorders become more apparent, some important red flags are:
  • No single words by 16 months of age.
  • No babbling, pointing or other communicative gestures by 1 year of age.
  • A lack of two-word phrases by 2 years of age.
  • A loss of language skills at any age.

The report recommends universal screening of all children for autism between 18 months and 24 months of age, even if parents haven't expressed any particular concerns.  Learn more about Autisim.

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