MYTH: Vaccines cause autism!
That is one of the most popular myths surrounding autism. This myth was introduced by a 1998 study that linked autism to vaccines but has since been redacted. However, the myth still persists all thanks to some celebrities jumping on the bandwagon and the media giving the myth too much attention while failing to give as much attention to rebuttals.
The reality is that the myth that vaccines cause autism is not the only one surrounding the condition. The truth is that autism is a highly misunderstood condition. Read on to learn more about myths surrounding autistic behavior.
Myth: Autistic People Are Usually Violent
Even though recent news stories have related autism to violence, autistic people performing violent acts is usually as a result of emotional distress or sensory overload and it is highly unlikely that an autistic individual will either pose danger to society or act violently out of malice. Once people have a better understanding of autism they will understand that autistic people are not usually violent.
Myth: Autistic People Are Unwilling or Unable To Form Meaningful Social Relationships
While autistic people might have difficulties with social interaction, they still have the ability to form close social bonds, fall in love, or even have children.
Myth: All People with Autism Have Savant Abilities
Even though there might be a higher frequency of savant abilities among people with autism, only a small percentage (around 10%) of autistic people exhibit savant abilities. Some of the autistic people have splinter skills, which refers to skills in 1 or 2 areas above their overall performance abilities.
Myth: All People with Autism Have Mental Disabilities
Autism is not a mental health disorder but a neurological disorder. People on the autism spectrum are unique and have a wide range of intellectual abilities that are easily overestimated or underestimated. Tests created to include interpersonal and language analyses can easily misrepresent the intelligence of autistic people. While autistic people might struggle with social skills and have difficulties with tasks regarded as simple they can master complex concepts and tasks quickly.
People on the autism spectrum have also earned graduate and college degrees and actually work in various professions. Conversely, it is easy to assume that people with autism have a higher level of understanding than they do based on their language skills, behavior, or high-level of ability in a particular area.
Myth: Autistic Individuals Are Cold and Lack Empathetic Feelings
Autistic people feel as much if not more empathy as other people but may express it in ways that are much harder to recognize.
Autism has many myths and misconceptions associated with it and it is time for people to start learning about it to avoid all these. This article has looked at some of the myths associated with autistic behavior and the truth behind those misconception. Autistic people are truly amazing people that are just misunderstood. Everyone needs to take the time to learn about autism and autistic people to put an end to these myths and misconceptions.