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Autism is brain development disorder that impairs social interaction and communication, and causes restricted and repetitive behavior, all starting before a child is three years old.

The first in a multi-part posting about the experiences of raising an autistic child
This explains the trauma of CDD. A child can be born normal, then, between the ages of 2-10 this dreaded disability can strike.
Rett syndrome, is a devastation on the child and on the family.
Classic autism, Asperger's Syndrome, are a part of the autism spectrum as is PDD-NOS, otherwise known as Pervasive Development Disorder - Not Otherwise Specified. This condition might be considered as a "catch-all" as it is a form of autism which has some similarities but, on the other hand, does not share as many symptoms.
Asperger’s Syndrome is one of the three classifications that make up the Autism Spectrum. The first study was done by Dr. Hans Asperger, in 1944, when he wrote about individuals who displayed “odd-like” behaviors.
Four years ago researchers from John Hopkins Medicine, in Baltimore, reported that there were clear signs of inflammation in some people with autism.
Some people have a misconception about the environment and how it relates to autism. By this I mean that many are not aware of how extensive the concept of “environment” is in relation to the disorder. When we think about the environment we think about the air we breathe, the toxins in the air, and pesticides that may affect all human life in some way.
It has been learned that adults with autism have brains that are “wired” unlike other people. This causes them to think differently.
Question: Does food and/or diet cause autism? The answer, like many other answers related to autism, is not definitive. If we look at the information we presently have, chances are we can safely say that food and diet, alone, does not cause autism;
There has been, and continues to be, a lot of research in the area of genes and heredity in relationship to autism. We need to have an understanding of genes and heredity before we dig deeper into this subject. Basically, a gene is the basic biological unit of heredity. Heredity is the genetic transmission of characteristics from parent to offspring.