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What is autism?

Autism (also known as ASC or ASD) is a lifelong, developmental condition that affects how a person communicates with and relates to other people, and how they experience the world around them.

Autistic people may:

  • find it hard to communicate and interact with other people
  • find it hard to understand how other people think or feel
  • find things like bright lights or loud noises overwhelming, stressful or uncomfortable
  • get anxious or upset about unfamiliar situations and social events
  • take longer to understand information
  • do or think the same things over and over
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Getting a Diagnosis

The characteristics of autism vary from one person to another, but in order for a diagnosis to be made, a person will usually be assessed as having had persistent difficulties with social communication and social interaction and restricted and repetitive patterns of behaviours, activities or interests since early childhood, to the extent that these "limit and impair everyday functioning".

Children can be diagnosed as autistic when they’re quite young, in some cases from the age of two. But not everyone is diagnosed early in life. It’s quite common for a child to not get their diagnosis until they are older, or even an adult, particularly if they don’t have accompanying learning disabilities.

Have a concern?

If you are concerned about your child or would like some advice, our SENDCO is Mrs Helen Willcox.

Mrs Willcox can be contacted via email (admin@orchidvale.org.uk) or by phone (01793 745006).

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