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Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) refers to an array of neurodevelopmental disabilities that are typically expressed as difficulties in social, communication, and emotional learning and behaviors. Though the term autism has been in use for nearly a century, the incidence of this disorder has been rising regularly. In 2014, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimated that 1 in 68 children in the United States has been identified as having ASD, with the incidence among boys almost five times that of girls. There is great diversity in how this disorder appears in children; hence, it is described as a spectrum of behaviors. It varies in timing of onset (though it emerges in the early years), the behavior challenges exhibited, and the severity and pervasiveness of ...

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