How Common Is Autism?

Autism written on a puzzle
575 383 Paul Louden

How Common?

 

Today, the rate of autism is roughly around one in 89, with it being much higher among males; almost one in 50. The numbers change pretty much yearly, and they’ve been rising frequently throughout the last decade.

 

Part of the cause for this increase in the number of people with autism is that each and every year, we become better at identifying autism. A huge reason for this is awareness campaigns. And we’re living in the information age. Everyone has access to so much more information than ever before and this has been great for those trying to better understand autism. We all have access to Google and to other search tools that can lead us to autism advocacy groups where we can find all sorts of great information.

 

The Information Age

 

We now have access via search engines to groups like Autism Speaks, the Autism Cares Foundation and Autism Empowerment. These organizations have started campaigns like “Light It Up Blue,” which spreads awareness and understanding of autism, celebrates and honors the unique talents and skills of people with autism, and brings attention to the needs of all people with autism. These campaigns are a benefit to both people with and without autism.

 

Along with everyone having more information at their disposal, a large part of why the diagnosis rate may be so high right now is that we’re trying so hard to diagnose people early.

 

Of course, we know that autism likely has multiple causes. Some of them may be genetic. Some of them may be environmental. And there are surely causes that we do not even know of today. At the very least, the increased rate of diagnosis is at least due, in part, to our ability to identify autism so much better now than we could even ten years ago.

 

Overall it’s clear that people are, without a doubt, trying to understand autism. Along with that, it’s more common for people to try to understand what it’s like to have autism, and how they can better communicate with people they know who are on the spectrum.

 

If you have any other questions, feel free to leave a comment below.

 

As always, thanks for reading!

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