Kennewick -- The Centers for Disease Control has announced that one in 150 toddlers will be diagnosed with autism this year. That number has increased from one in 165 last year.
What causes the disorder is not known, but experts in the field want parents with kids who have autism, and those who do not, to be educated about the disorder. As a result, April has been designated Autism Month.
Terry Buck, a past president of the Autism Society, says it's helpful to know that many patients suffer other disorders.
"There's a huge number of adults with autism that have some other mental disorder, whether it be schizophrenia, or anxiety disorder, or even huge numbers with seizure disorder."
If such disorders show up somewhere in the family tree, buck says it is a good idea to make a mental note. And if any child shows signs of developmental problems, no matter how subtle, it's important to check with a doctor as quickly as possible. Early intervention is important in aiding children who are diagnosed with autism.
To learn more about autism, there is an Awareness Fair scheduled for April 28 at Columbia Community Church on Gage in the Tri-Cites.