Lately, we hear about rising rates of autism in the news. But where are those numbers coming from? We spend a lot of time questioning WHY autism spectrum disorders are on the rise, but do we question the source of these numbers? I know many of them come from specific countries and limited participants, making me question their validity. 

Here in the United States, the Centers for Disease Control is upping their game when it comes to autism data gathering. They will use 10 sites and view the data through two lenses: current DSM-5 criteria and whether or not each child would still receive an autism diagnosis under the old criteria.

They are also looking closely at the diagnostic criteria for autism spectrum disorders as well as community response to these rising numbers. 

Hopefully we will get some solid research to help guide future research on what causes autism. 

What DO we know from research: Applied Behavior Analysis works. ABA helps children with autism spectrum disorders (and pretty much anyone else) make progress toward specific goals. ABA works. That’s what we DO know from research today.

Read more about the CDC’s new initiative here: