Autism Spectrum Disorder or ASD is a group of complex neurodevelopmental disorders characterized by patterns of behavior and difficulty with social skills, communication and interacting. Symptoms present in early childhood and affect all aspects of daily functioning.
"Spectrum" is a term that refers to a wide range of skills, symptoms, and levels of disabilities that occur in those living with ASD. A diagnosis of ASD includes an assessment of intellectual disability, social functioning, and language impairment.
ASD occurs in every race and ethnicity. Boys are significantly more likely to develop ASD than girls. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention it is estimated that 1 in 68 children has some degree of ASD.
A Child and Family Psychiatry offers a two-step screening and diagnostic process. The first step includes the initial screening that is done at home. No one knows their child better than you. Information received from parents about growth, development, and behaviors is essential for the diagnostic process. Information from the child's pediatrician, school and daycare are also helpful. The second step of the screening process involves a two-day assessment that includes both parents/caregivers and the child.
Our interdisciplinary team may include a psychiatrist, board certified psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner, speech and language pathologist, licensed counselor and other medical professionals.
Testing involves a questionnaire performed at home and testing process that includes detailed evaluation of early childhood development, speech evaluation and an age-appropriate evaluation of cognitive abilities that may include:
We provide an interdisciplinary evaluation, utilizing evidence-based practice, that allows multiple providers to spend time with both the child and family. This provides the opportunity to offer our team the ability to provide a comprehensive evaluation and then offer families individualized recommendations for treatment.
At the completion of the 2-day assessment, you will be scheduled for a follow-up appointment to review your child's comprehensive evaluation report that includes individualized treatment recommendations, receive a diagnosis, discuss results, and address concerns.
For more information:
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
1600 Clifton Road
Atlanta, GA 30333
Tel: 800-311-3435; 404-639-3311; 404-639-3543
National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD)
National Institutes of Health, DHHS
31 Center Drive, MSC 2320
Bethesda, MD 20892-2320
Tel: 301-496-7243; 800-241-1044; 800-241-1055 (TTY)
Association for Science in Autism Treatment
P.O. Box 1447
Hoboken, NJ 07030
Autism Research Institute (ARI)
4182 Adams Avenue
San Diego, CA 92116
Tel: 619-281-7165; 866-366-3361
Autism Society of America
4340 East-West Highway
Bethesda, MD 20814
Tel: 301-657-0881; 800-3AUTISM (328-8476)
Autism Speaks, Inc.
1 East 33rd Street
New York, NY 10016
Tel: 212-252-8584; 888-288-4762