A recent study in Denmark looked at the soaring rates of autism and what was causing the increase. The study found that increased rates of autism are due primarily to the change in how autism is defined. It was discovered that 60 percent of the increase was caused by the changes in the diagnostic criteria, and that a diagnosis of autism did not need to be made in the hospital. In other words, autism is easier to be diagnosed as the definition of autism was made broader. It is important to remember that there is a 40 percent increase in autism that is unexplainable, which means that further research needs to be conducted on what causes autism. While the study did take place in Denmark it may be safe to say that the rise in the United States is due to changes in the diagnostic criteria, and is something to be considered.
The earlier the autism is diagnosed, the earlier intervention can begin. Early interventions may include Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA), Pivotal Response Treatment (PRT), and the Early Start Denver Model (ESDM). Our toys at PlayAbility such as our Shape SENSEations, Rib-it-Balls, and Puppets, may be used in therapy. The Shape SENSEation and Rib-it-Balls are perfect for working on fine and gross motor skills. Our puppets are great for verbal interactions.
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