What is Autism?

Autism, or Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), is a developmental condition that affects how individuals perceive and interact with the world. It encompasses a wide range of symptoms and levels of impairment, making each person’s experience unique. Common characteristics include difficulties with:

  • Social communication
  • Repetitive behaviours
  • Specific interests or routines

Autism is typically diagnosed in early childhood, although it can be identified at any age. The exact causes of autism are still being researched, but it is understood to involve a combination of genetic and environmental factors.

Do I have Autism?

If you’re wondering whether you might have autism, it’s important to speak with a qualified healthcare professional such as a psychologist or psychiatrist, who specialises in autism spectrum disorders. They can conduct assessments, discuss your concerns in detail and offer guidance based on your individual experiences and symptoms. You can seek an NHS assessment via your GP or self-fund privately. You may also be able to exercise your Right To Choose, which allows you to opt for a private assessment via the NHS.

Here are a few steps you can take to help you find out:

  1. Reflect on Symptoms: Consider what specific behaviours or challenges make you wonder if you might have autism. Common signs include difficulties with social interactions, repetitive behaviours, intense focus on specific interests, and sensitivity to sensory inputs.
  2. Educate Yourself: Learning more about autism can help you understand the condition better. Reliable resources include the Autism Society and the National Institute of Mental Health.
  3. Talk to Trusted People: Share your concerns with trusted family members or friends who know you well. They can offer support and insights that might be helpful during your evaluation process.

Online therapy for Autistic People

Studies show that support and interventions, such as behavioural therapies, educational support, and social skills training, can significantly enhance the quality of life for individuals with autism and their families.

Embracing and understanding autism fosters a more inclusive and supportive community for everyone. Our qualified psychologists, therapists and counsellors here at Counselling Psychology Online provide bespoke therapy online for those with autism related difficulties. To arrange an assessment session for online therapy with one of our online psychologists or therapists, contact us here. Answers to the most frequently asked questions about our therapies, fees and online therapy can be found on our FAQ page.