What is Autism?
Every person with Autism is different to another and has their own way of seeing the world, which makes them interesting and unique.
When someone has Autism, it means that their brains are wired differently to other people. However, the symptoms of Autism vary enormously from person to person.
People with Autism find it difficult to interact socially and communicate with others. As they often have difficulty understanding what other people are feeling and what interests others, they might say the wrong thing. They might talk for a long time about a topic they really like, as they are unaware that the topic is of no interest to others. They may not use gestures and body language in the way that other people do. For example they may not use eye contact and may not smile. However, their ability to communicate can vary tremendously, with some people with Autism having no or limited speech, and others having extensive vocabularies. Although people with Autism can find it difficult to talk to people and make friends, they still have the same emotions as anybody else and love to have friends, even if it’s hard.
People with Autism also like things to happen the same way. They might take the same route to school or the shops, or line up their toys in a particular order. If something is out of place or if routines change without warning, they can get upset or worried. They may also be bothered by sudden loud sounds, bright lights or unexpected touch that do not bother others. They may become upset if someone hugs them or talks too quickly or loudly. They often have intense interests in particular topics and may be extremely knowledgeable about their special interest areas. They can also have an amazing memory for detail.