In 2018 the CDC estimates that 1 in 59 children are diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder. As a spectrum, individuals diagnosed with ASD can have a range of difficulties, from hypersensitivity to sounds or smell that can make life in public challenging, to self-injuring behavior or seizures.
Autism typically appears within the first three years of life, and early diagnosis and intervention through therapy such as ABA (applied behavioral analysis) are one of the most proven ways to help prepare children and their families for life with Autism. Not a cure, but specialized learning to improve communication, development, coping, and social interactions.
As a parent, one of the greatest challenges is access to care. Often the most effective therapies are expensive, with limited coverage by insurance. There is no harder scenario as a parent than to know resources exist to help your child's quality of life but to not be able to afford them.