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 甚麼是自閉症譜系障礙(ASD)?

自閉症也稱為自閉症譜系障礙(ASD),是一種廣泛、連續性的發展障礙和遲緩。至今還是成因未明及未有根治的方法。自閉症的徵狀一般在小孩出生後首數年出現,每個小孩的情況都不同,主要影響的範疇包括:

  • 語言和溝通缺陷

  • 社交能力及社會互動障礙

  • 缺乏認知能力及適應能力

  • 有限、重複及偏執性行為和興趣

自閉症會嚴重影響成長。根據美國疾病控制和預防中心的統計,目前在美國每44名兒童中,便有一名是有自閉症的。在香港,教育局在2015/2016年度發表的數字顯示有6,800名自閉症學童在普通學校就讀,而2020/2021年度發表的數字則上升至11,870名。自閉症的普遍性和後果是我們不能承擔及忽視的。

What is Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD)? 

Autism, also known as Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), is a severe disruption of the normal development process, with varying degrees of severity and levels of functioning. The cause remains unknown and ASD can be often diagnosed within the first few years of life. Although symptoms of autism vary from child to child, the core areas affected include:

  • Deficits in language and communication

  • Impairments in socialisation and social interaction

  • Undeveloped cognitive and adaptive functioning

  • Restricted repetitive and stereotyped patterns of behaviour and interests

According to the statistics of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in the United States, the ASD prevalence is now 1 in 44 children. In Hong Kong, the number of students with ASD studying in public sector ordinary schools for 2015/2016 school years was 6800, while the number for 2020/2021 school years has increased to 11,870. The ever-increasing prevalence of ASD together with its impacts is something that we cannot afford to ignore.