Early Signs of Autism Parents Should Know

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Monday, April 2 is World Autism Awareness Day.  According to the Centers for Disease Control, it's a disorder that now affects one in 88 American children.

Experts say the best thing parents can do is educate themselves about the early warning signs. While the symptoms of Autism may not be obvious until after a child's first birthday, a recent study Autism Speaks funded, shows an MRI can detect changes in the brain of autistic children as early as six months.

"Together with observations about behavior, early brain markers may give us a more accurate ability to predict who's going to have autism," Dr. Joseph Piven explained.

Some red flags parents should look out for no babbling, pointing, reaching, or waving by 12 months and no words by 16 months and any loss of speech, babbling or social skills at any age. Doctors recommend having the child evaluated if there any concerns.