Autism is a developmental disorder that appears in the first 3 years of life, and affects the brain's normal development of social and communication skills. My son is autistic.
ASDs affect one out of every 88 children in the U.S. They occur more often among boys than girls. While autism appears to be on the rise, it's unclear whether the growing number of diagnoses shows a real increase or comes from improved detection.
All parents intermittently deal with children who have difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep. These temporary sleep difficulties are normal. However, children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) appear to have more ongoing sleep-related difficulties. The number of families affected varies from study to study, but significant sleep problems can occur in 40%—80% of children with ASD. Sleep is a critical component of health. Although we do not understand all its functions, sleep is essential...
Early diagnosis is important. That's because early treatment can help a child with autism make significant gains in language and social skills.