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Early Diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorder

Caregivers Other Than Parents May Aid in Earlier Diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorders


Family members other than parents can play an important role in the initial recognition of difficulties prior to a child being diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder.  This involvement of other family members can often lead to an earlier diagnosis which in turn can lead to earlier intervention and more positive outcomes.   In a recent study of 477 parents, 25% reported that people who spent time with their children, other than themselves, indicated that they were concerned about symptoms the child was demonstrating before the parents themselves were concerned.  The two most common groups of people to notice concerns were grandparents and teachers.  Children having frequent interactions with grandmothers, specifically, lowered the age of diagnosis by as much as 5 months.  By identifying children with an autism spectrum disorder 5 months earlier, these children will potentially get an extra 5 months of intervention can be critical to more positive outcomes. 


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