Autism Home > Symptoms of Autism

The three distinctive signs and symptoms of autism include problems with verbal and nonverbal communication, difficulties with social interaction, and repetitive behaviors or narrow, obsessive interests. Symptoms can range in impact from mild to disabling. For many children, symptoms of the condition improve with treatment and with age.

Signs and Symptoms of Autism: An Introduction

There are three distinctive symptoms of autism. These symptoms include:
 
  • Problems with verbal and nonverbal communication
  • Difficulties with social interaction
  • Repetitive behaviors or narrow, obsessive interests.
     
Children with autism can also have symptoms that include reduced sensitivity to pain but increased sensitivity to sound, touch, or other sensory stimulation.
 
Autism symptoms can range in impact from mild to disabling. Parents are usually the first to notice symptoms possible symptoms in their child.
 

Autism Symptoms: Verbal and Nonverbal Communication

Children with symptoms of autism may fail to respond to their name and often avoid eye contact with other people. They have difficulty interpreting what others are thinking or feeling because they can't understand social cues, such as tone of voice or facial expressions, and don't watch other people's faces for clues about appropriate behavior. They lack empathy.
 

Symptoms of Autism: Social Interaction

Perhaps best known among the symptoms of autism is impaired social interaction. As early as infancy, a baby with autism may be unresponsive to people or focus intently on one item to the exclusion of others for long periods of time.
 
A child with autism may appear to develop normally and then withdraw and become indifferent to social engagement.
 
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Arthur Schoenstadt, MD
Last updated/reviewed:
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