The term Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) reflects the fact that no two people with ASD are alike. Even though individuals with ASD have difficulties in the areas of communication, socialisation, and imagination or flexibility of thought, each is at a different point on the spectrum and so may seem quite different. Some people with ASD will be able to live independent lives while others will always need assistance and support.
Some people with ASD have other conditions as well, such as speech and language difficulties, intellectual disabilities, sleep problems, attention problems, epilepsy, anxiety and depression, and difficulties with fine and gross motor skills. There are also other conditions that are associated with ASD, including Fragile X Syndrome, Tuberous Sclerosis and other genetic disorders.
Many have difficulties interpreting sensory information, and may display over- or under-sensitivity. Being over-sensitive to sound, touch, taste, smell and vision can be very distressing to individuals with an ASD and can result in very strong reactions.