Today is World Autism Awareness Day (WAAD)! Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) refers to a broad range of conditions characterized by challenges with social and communication skills along with restricted, repetitive behaviours. Each ASD diagnosis is unique and each individual diagnosed with ASD has a distinct set of strengths and challenges. In 2008, the United Nations designated April 2nd as WAAD and has since made significant strides in awareness and acceptance of neurodiversity. This is evidenced by widespread support for initiatives such as Autism Speaks’ #LightItUpBlue campaign. However, Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) still remains subject to many misconceptions such as:
Myth: “Vaccines cause autism.”
Myth: “Autism is a childhood disorder that only affects behaviour.”
Myth: “People with autism can’t feel or express any emotion.”
At MEDUCOM, we took this day as an opportunity to test our knowledge and debunk myths surrounding ASD in order to spread informed awareness of ASD in our communities.