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What is autism spectrum disorder?

When some individuals in New Jersey and elsewhere are born with a mental condition, it is apparent at birth. However, other disorders do not manifest themselves until later in life. For some, this is during childhood; however, for others it may not occur until early adulthood. Autism is typically diagnosed during childhood and is a disorder that will impact him or her for the rest of their life. In some cases, this mental condition can be disabling when it comes to having social skills and the ability to hold down a job.

What is autism spectrum disorder? This is a condition that is related to a person's brain development and how he or she perceives and socializes with others. This can cause problems when it comes to social interactions and communicating with others. This disorder also includes limited and repetitive patterns behavior.

The conditions involved in this disorder used to be considered separate, but now autism, Asperger's syndrome, childhood disintegrative disorder and unspecified forms of pervasive development disorder are all included in this single disorder. Autism spectrum disorder typically begins in childhood, eventually causing functioning problems in adulthood, such as social skills in school and at work. At this time, there is no cure for autism; however, early treatment can make a major difference in the life of the child up until adulthood.

Because this disorder could significantly impact a child or adult's life, it may be difficult to be part of society or even maintain employment. It is possible to seek Social Security disability benefits for this mental condition. These benefits could prove useful when seeking treatment and paying for his or her basic living needs.

Source: Mayoclinic.org, "Autism spectrum disorder," accessed Feb. 10, 2018

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