Is Autism over diagnosed?

I was wondering if anyone out there thinks that Autism is over diagnosed these days? I know there is a "spectrum" for Autism but it seems that if any kid nowadays has his "quirks" that he or she automatically fall "on the spectrum". Is it anything similar to how ADD was so pronounced years ago and Ritalin was so overly prescribed. Thoughts?

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  • 1 decade ago
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    I will say this much.. Autism is a very real for many children/families and plays a role in their daily lives. However as real as it is it has become a "catch all" label for what the dr's either don't know or don't look at deeper.

  • 1 decade ago

    Autism can't be over diagnosed, because it has finally become defined as a "spectrum disorder. This means a mild case with very few, and even non-disabling, autistic symptoms need to be present before someone is diagnosable as autistic. So, if you learn all the symptoms of autism, including those of Asperger's Syndrome and PDD, you will discover that everybody on Earth is autistic to some degree.

  • 1 decade ago

    People over 40 know this answer. When I was in school, and I grew up in several different states, we did not have anyone in our school that was like what I see today. The worst kid then is like a very normal kid now. In that children with very mild issues were sent away to institutions because it was so rare. Today, kids are kept in mainstream education that would have been sent off then. Like for example, if a child was the tiniest bit disruptive, they were sent out or very chastised, and this was just for whispering in class. Today, kids are kicking, running all over, clumsily dropping things, and all kinds of inattentive, impulsive, speech and/or hyperactive behaviors.

    Another example is my now 17-year old. When he was two and had speech issues, it was so rare, that he was in all day school for it, provided free by the local school district. Now, my adopted daughter, who I got just 2 years ago with speech issues, was told that they are too busy to provide more than 30 minutes once a week. The schools are over-whelmed, and so are the parents, insurance agencies, everyone. The problem is very grand.

    Don't take my word for it, go ask the grandparents you meet. I have asked many, and they all say the same thing. So, people can say whatever they want, and do whatever science they want. I lived back then. I know what I saw, and I know what I see today.

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