The number of children diagnosed with Autism spiked out of control in the 1990’s. Unfortunately the number of new cases has continued to increase annually since then. The current statistics show that 1 in 150 children will be affected by Autism. William M. Webster IV 20 years ago the statistics were 1 in 10,000.
The United States Department of Education has issues reports that Autism is anticipated to continue growing at the rate of 10% to 17% annually. The Center for Disease Control estimates that 1.5 million people now suffer from some form of Autism. There are more than 500,000 individuals under the age of 21 with some form of Autism right now in the United States.
This numbers include a variety of different disorders that are covered under the umbrella of the Autism Spectrum. They include Classic Autism, Apserger’s Disorder, Rett’s Syndrome, Childhood Disintegrative Disorder, and Pervasive Development Disorder (PDD). Each of these disorders portrays unique characteristics but they have common elements that makes them pervasive in nature rather than specific.
What is the cause of such an unbelievable increase? Some of the research indicates a variety of things including exposure to heavy metals, environmental issues, and Lyme Disease. Yet there is no proof that any one of these areas is truly responsible for Autism. Another scenario is that there have always been many children with Autism but the diagnosis hasn’t been there like it is now.