May 16, 2014 5:46 PM by Annie Snead
The chances of having a child with autism are greater now and with that comes more support.
But there's not enough research that pinpoints the exact cause.
News 5 spoke with a local speech therapist who says the earlier children are diagnosed, the better.
"Now, it's such an epidemic, that anybody could have a child with autism," said Gladys Sanchez.
Sanchez is a speech therapist at the Shandy Clinic in Colorado Springs, helping kids from 18 months to 12 years old; including those with autism.
"It doesn't matter if you are older, it doesn't matter if you are a young couple, it doesn't matter if you are exposed to, your job exposes you to certain chemicals it just doesn't matter, you know. The chances of you having a child with autism are greater now," she said.
She wants parents to know they're not alone and don't be afraid to seek help.
"The more detail they can give to the doctor, I think the doctor can do a better referral for that child," she said.
Signs to look for include lack of eye contact, especially for infants.
And if a child is overly independent.
"To the point where they are not even concerned about their own safety, that is a concern," she said.
She says therapists also try to focus on socialization, because children tend to learn from each other.
And adds if you're concerned with your child having some kind of delay in development, bring it up with your pediatrician.
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