Autism: Causes, Signs, and Management

An error occurred trying to load this video.

Try refreshing the page, or contact customer support.

Coming up next: What Is Huntington's Disease? - Symptoms, Genetic Cause & Treatment

You're on a roll. Keep up the good work!

Take Quiz Watch Next Lesson
Your next lesson will play in 10 seconds
  • 0:32 What Is Autism?
  • 1:10 Why Does Autism Occur?
  • 2:01 Clinical Signs,…
  • 3:06 Treatment of Autism
  • 4:06 The Controversy…
  • 5:43 Lesson Summary
Save Save Save

Want to watch this again later?

Log in or sign up to add this lesson to a Custom Course.

Log in or Sign up

Speed Speed

Recommended Lessons and Courses for You

Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Artem Cheprasov

Artem has a doctor of veterinary medicine degree.

In this lesson, we'll go over a well-known neurodevelopmental condition called autism, its symptoms, and possible treatments. We'll also discuss a huge controversy that erupted regarding autism and its link to vaccines and whether that link is valid or not.

A Controversial Condition

One of the worst things that can happen to a parent is to have their child diagnosed with a very serious condition. Some things are worse than others. For example, a bacterial disease may be cured with something like antibiotics. However, other problems have a heavy dose of genetics involved, meaning there can be no cure and the disorder is for life. This lesson will point out one such well-known and controversial condition.

What Is Autism?

I'm talking about autism, a neurodevelopmental disorder that causes a child to develop repetitive behaviors and affects an individual's ability to communicate and interact with other people. This condition affects boys four times more often than girls and seems to be on the rise. However, we cannot be sure if the rise in autism is related to increasing potential risk factors, such as the age of the parents of a child, or is simply down to better monitoring for and recording of this disorder.

Why Does Autism Occur?

No one knows why autism develops. Genetic factors and environmental ones play a role, but exactly how is very unclear. The reason people suspect genetic factors to play a role is because studies of identical twins showed that if one has the condition, there's a 90% chance the other twin will have autism as well.

In general, scientists suspect that a number of things may occur, but not all of them may occur in every person with autism. For example, everything from irregular physical development of the brain to improper balances of neurotransmitters in the brain may play a role. What seems to be more certain is that these changes begin way before the child is born, during its development in the womb, and continues after birth as well.

Clinical Signs, Symptoms, and Diagnostics

Children affected with this condition have a wide variety of signs, some of which may begin as early as 6-18 months of age, which include:

To unlock this lesson you must be a Member.
Create your account

Register to view this lesson

Are you a student or a teacher?

Unlock Your Education

See for yourself why 30 million people use

Become a member and start learning now.
Become a Member  Back
What teachers are saying about
Try it risk-free for 30 days

Earning College Credit

Did you know… We have over 200 college courses that prepare you to earn credit by exam that is accepted by over 1,500 colleges and universities. You can test out of the first two years of college and save thousands off your degree. Anyone can earn credit-by-exam regardless of age or education level.

To learn more, visit our Earning Credit Page

Transferring credit to the school of your choice

Not sure what college you want to attend yet? has thousands of articles about every imaginable degree, area of study and career path that can help you find the school that's right for you.

Create an account to start this course today
Try it risk-free for 30 days!
Create an account