Thanks to the recent advances in the areas of research and awareness, children are being diagnosed with ASD at increasingly younger ages. In the past, a child with Aspergers would easily go undiagnosed until the second year of school, or even later. Pediatricians are now using guidelines for developmental milestones, along with parental checklists, to question whether young children need to be tested for ASD. Because of these efforts, children as young as 15-18 months of age are receiving the Autism diagnosis, allowing for early treatment options.
Early Intervention programs are state-run government programs that offer testing, evaluation, and treatments to children from birth to age three, with medical needs and/or developmental delays. These programs are funded by state and federal government agencies and are offered to families at no cost beyond health insurance coverage. In most cases, testing is done in the child’s home and therapies are offered within the home if possible.
Recent studies are showing that these Early Intervention programs are making a significant difference in the lives and abilities of children with Autism. The University of Washington in Seattle has published a paper on one such study. This five-year study involved US toddlers who had been diagnosed with Autism. You can read more about the effectiveness of Early Intervention as found in the study at the University of Washington by clicking this link: http://www.medilexicon.com/medicalnews.php?newsid=172495
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