Autism Awareness Day and Autism Awareness Month

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Every April, World Autism Month begins with the United Nations-sanctioned World Autism Awareness Day on 2 April. This year marks the 16th annual World Autism Awareness Day.

Throughout the month of April, the intention is to raise awareness and understanding of autism by sharing stories and providing opportunities to increase such understanding and acceptance of people with autism to promote worldwide support.

What is Autism?

Autism is not an illness or a disease; it means that a person’s brain works in a different way to other people. Autism is not a medical condition and does not require treatments for a “cure”.

You are born with autism, and signs of autism might be noticed when you are very young or possibly not until you are older.

People with autism may find it hard to communicate and interact with other people, find it hard to understand how people think or feel, find things like bright lights or loud noises overwhelming, stressful or uncomfortable, get anxious or upset about unfamiliar situations and social events, take longer to understand information and do or think the same things repetitively. However, it is important not to generalise autism as it can present in different ways from person to person.

Autism most definitely does not prevent someone from having a good life. Just like anyone, people with autism have their strengths and talents, but also things they may struggle with, for example, people with autism may need support to develop relationships and get a job.

Please visit the NHS website for more information about autism and the process of receiving a diagnosis.

Autism is different for everyone

There is no ‘one size fits all’ when discussing autism. Autism is a spectrum, and therefore everybody with autism is different and will have different support needs.

Some people with autism have average or above-average intelligence, but some may also have additional educational needs, which means they may require help with day-to-day activities and have additional care needs.

It is not clear what causes autism

It is not known what causes autism or even if there is a cause.

However, autism is not caused by bad parenting, vaccines, such as the MMR vaccine, diet or an infection you can spread to other people.

People with autism often have other conditions, such as:

  • attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)
  • dyslexia
  • anxiety
  • depression
  • epilepsy.

Whether you have autism, love someone who does, or are looking to improve your understanding of autism and wish to support an accepting, diverse, kind community, then please stand together and pledge your support to make a difference by helping all people with autism to reach their full potential.

Autism resources

Please see below links to organisations who intend to provide support to those with autism to help them fulfil their potential, improve their lives in different ways and to provide support for their families across Essex, Suffolk and Norfolk.


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