The OF Blog: Today is World Autism Awareness Day

Tuesday, April 02, 2013

Today is World Autism Awareness Day

April 2 is World Autism Awareness Day.  As a few of you know, I recently took a second job (my other job being a part-time middle school ESL teacher) working evenings with autistic teens.  This is an issue that strikes close to home for me, as I have likely one and maybe two young relatives who have some form of autism.  Recently, there have been studies that suggest that due to better diagnoses (and the reclassification of Asperger's Syndrome within the autism spectrum in the upcoming DSM-V) that 1 out of 88 children in the United States (and in some parts of the world, such as South Korea, it's even higher) will be diagnosed with autism.

Autism, especially in the severe/profound forms that I see at my second job, is a disorder that baffles those who are unaccustomed to being around those who have it.  Yet there are things that can be done to help these children and adults learn to function better in society.  That is why organizations such as Autism Speaks have made great efforts in recent years to educate the public about autism and what is being done to help treat it.  It can be as simple as replacing your lightbulbs with blue-tinged ones this month or wearing blue today, April 2, to show your support.


Roland said...

I don't understand the reference to the color blue. How is that related to autism?

Larry Nolen said...

I've heard different reasons. One is that blue is related to the book Born on a Blue Day, that it is the main logo color of the UN Autism group, and that it might be related to the fact that boys are at least 4 times more likely to be diagnosed with autism than girls.

If I find out more, I'll let you know.

Roland said...

Ok, I thought maybe autistic people like the color blue for some reason, like it calms them down or something...

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