One in eighty-eight children are diagnosed with one of the five developmental disorders that fall under the Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD.) ASD is a ‘developmental disability considered the result of a neurological condition affecting normal brain function, development and social interactions’ (easterseals.com).
One in fifty-four boys are diagnosed with the autistic disorder. Involving ‘moderate to severe impairments in communications, socialization and behavior,’ males are 4 times more likely than females to contract this disorder.
Asperger’s Syndrome gives those diagnosed the ability to function in the ‘above to above average intelligence range and have no delays in language skills, but often struggle with social skills and restrictive and repetitive behaviors.’ Angie Dessler, an employee at Salon 5th Ave talks about her son Liam, “Living with Liam is always the same but always different. Everyday is the same but one thing can set him off. Everyday is a struggle but I wouldn’t change him for the world.”
Primarily females are diagnosed with Rett Syndrome. Along with this disability, Childhood Disintegrative Disorder also has the same indicators of restrictive and repetitive behaviors. Both disorders also have ‘significant regression in skills they already had.’
Pervasive Development Disorder Not Otherwise Specified (PDD-NOS) includes ‘children that do not fully meet the criteria for the specific disorders or those that do not have the degree of impairment associated with those disorders.’
Easter Seals is a country wide service that provides interventions that helps those of all abilities. April is Autism Awareness month. Local businesses like Salon 5th Ave on South Queen Street raises awareness yearly by raising money to give back to Easter Seals. “It’s important to give back to your community,” S5A owner Julie Little says, “[Autism] directly affects our employees and I know what help they can get through Easter Seal.” S5A has many promotions to help Easter Seals like their blue hair extensions for a $10 donation or a puzzle piece nail art for a $2 donation.
The earlier the intervention, the better. Autism Spectrum Disorder is a lifelong disorder. See how you can help by visiting Salon 5th Ave or going to Easterseals.com.