Symptoms of Autism
by Ricker Polsdorfer, MD
Autism can be noticed during infancy. It is usually noticed during early childhood, which is between the ages of 2-6 years. The severity of symptoms varies. Children with autism may show a combination of behaviors. Autism is a lifelong condition.
Each child is different. Symptoms fall into 4 broad categories:
Children develop and change rapidly at this early stage. Symptoms often take the form of failure to progress. A child may also regress from previous achievements. Something wrong may be noticed at birth. However, it is more common to notice something wrong when your child is a toddler. They may not achieve normal social and developmental milestones.
The range of unusual behaviors is wide. Children have many different combinations of behaviors.
Poor or Limited Social Relationships
Symptoms may include:
Underdeveloped Communication Skills
Symptoms may include:
Repetitive Behaviors, Unusual Interests, and Activities TOP
Autistic children usually:
Altered and Confused Sensory Input TOP
Signs may include:
Other Disorders TOP
Some people with autism have other disorders as well. These may include:
About autism. The Autism Society website. Available at:
...(Click grey area to select URL)
Accessed March 14, 2017.
Autism spectrum disorder. National Institute of Mental Health website. Available at: https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/topics/autism-spectrum-disorders-asd/index.shtml. Updated October 2016. Accessed March 14, 2017.
Autism spectrum disorders. EBSCO DynaMed Plus website. Available at: http://www.dynamed.... Updated April 29, 2016. Accessed March 14, 2017.
Behrman RE, et al. Nelson Textbook of Pediatrics. 18th ed. Philadelphia: Saunders, 2007.
Goetz CG. Goetz’s Textbook of Clinical Neurology. 3rd ed. Philadelphia: Saunders, 2007.
Jacobson JL, Jacobson AM. Psychiatric Secrets. 2nd ed. Philadelphia: Hanley & Belfus, 2001.
Stern TA, et al. Massachusetts General Hospital Comprehensive Clinical Psychiatry. 1st ed. Philadelphia: Mosby Elsevier, 2008.
Last reviewed March 2017 by Adrian Preda, MD
Last Updated: 3/15/2015
EBSCO Information Services is fully accredited by URAC. URAC is an independent, nonprofit health care accrediting organization dedicated to promoting health care quality through accreditation, certification and commendation.
This content is reviewed regularly and is updated when new and relevant evidence is made available. This information is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with questions regarding a medical condition.
To send comments or feedback to our Editorial Team regarding the content please email us at email@example.com. Our Health Library Support team will respond to your email request within 2 business days.