Autism is a developmental condition which affects the function of the brain. It affects the way that someone interacts with and relates to other people, and for someone with autism the world can be a confusing, unpredictable and sometimes scary place.
It is estimated that in the UK autism, in all its forms, affects nearly 1 in 100 people
Autism is called a spectrum condition because it affects people in different ways and to different degrees. Some people with autism can lead independent lives with jobs, relationships and social lives, whilst others may need much more support to achieve a good quality of life, particularly if the autism is accompanied by an additional learning or mental health difficulty.
People with autism have told us that they like people without autism to explain exactly what they mean, or what they would like them to do as this is easier to process. Some people with autism also like to have routines or timetables so they know what to expect next.
Although it is a lifelong condition for which there is no cure, it has been found that early intervention and individualised specialist support can help people with autism to achieve their full potential.
The key to helping people with autism is to promote awareness of the condition – trying to dispel the myths and stereotypes so that practical solutions be found.