Specialist in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, Near East University Hospital, Dr. Yeliz Engindereli, stated that the autism spectrum disorder could be diagnosed in the first three years of a human’s life and that it could be seen in the development or distortion of emotional, social, verbal and non-verbal communication. Furthermore, it could be seen as a neurodevelopmental disorder, involving repetitive behaviour and limited areas of interest.

1 in Every 68 Children in the World is diagnosed with Autism…
Specialist Dr. Yeliz Engindereli emphasised that although there was not a test for the early diagnosis of autism, the disease could be diagnosed via clinical examination. She added that one in every sixty eight children was diagnosed with autism in the world.

Additionally, Specialist Dr. Yeliz Engindereli stated that autism was four times more common in boys than girls. In spite of the fact that there were indications that the disease was caused genetically, the true cause of autism was not known; including which gene or genes cause the disease. It is believed and strongly argued that environmental factors and especially advanced age of the father had a major role in triggering it. Moreover, it is known that autism is seen in all kinds of communities in different geographical locations and in many human races.

Also, Specialist Dr. Yeliz Engindereli expressed that babies were born with an instinct and a need to socialise and establish communication. She stressed that the responses that a baby gives to the world around him/her was rather significant. In this regard, she advised parents to keep a close eye on their baby’s development process and adaptation to the outer world.

Symptoms of Autism…
Specialist Dr. Yeliz Engindereli stated that the development stages of babies with autism were distorted; such that some of the skills which should be developed could not at all be developed. In fact, there may be times where regression of acquired skills could be observed. Furthermore, she provided details regarding the symptoms of autism and stated that autistic children showed low interest in the surrounding environment and limited eye contact and that autistic babies did not respond when their names were called.

She said that “When an attempt is made to make them laugh, they do not laugh. Autistic children do not play with the toys in the intended purpose, they do not wave hands nor do they send a kiss. They do not do the actions which could be seen in their peers. In addition to distortion in development, meaningless clapping, shaking and twirling could be observed. Once the autistic baby is six months old, they do not recognise their parents and do not smile back at them. Even when they pass the age of 1, they do not have the ability to point and show things, or play games, or say a few meaningful words. At the age of two, autistic children do not play with the toys as they should be and could end up playing with them in a different way; compared to peers. If a child cannot play imaginary games, and seem irrelevant to events happening around him/her and thus end up sitting in a corner alone and play, this could be an indication.”

Specialist Dr. Yeliz Engindereli: “It is possible to improve your child’s development through early diagnosis, intensive and continuous special needs education so that they can level with the development of their healthy peers’ development.”
Specialist Dr. Yeliz Engindereli emphasised the significance of consulting a paediatrician and/or a child and adolescent psychiatrist as soon as parents notice a difference in their child’s development and/or any of the symptoms of autism; without a moment to spare. She reminded the positive impact and results that could be achieved via early diagnosis and regular psychiatric treatments.

It was pointed out that the only known treatment of autism today was through early diagnosis and intensive, continuous treatment through special needs education. Furthermore, Dr. Yeliz Engindereli expressed that at least 20 hours of special needs education was required subsequent to the early diagnosis since this caused a significant difference in a child with autism. Such that it increases their quality of life, helping them to level with healthy peers- so that they can continue their education along with them.