Autism rates in the Big Apple have ballooned at an alarming rate.
Autism spectrum disorder tripled in New York-New Jersey metro area 1% of the population in 2000 to 3% in 2016.
The reason for this is that the number of children without intellectual disabilities is increasing, according to a new study conducted by Rutgers researchers It was published Thursday in the journal Pediatrics.
They identified 4,661 8-year-olds with ASD in the metro area. Most had not. Mental disorders (59.3%) and therefore they were less likely to be diagnosed earlier.
ASD is a developmental disorder that affects an individual verbally, behaviorally, and socially. Doctors make a diagnosis by looking at the child’s developmental history and behavior. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. However, since there is no definitive medical diagnosis, determining ASD can be challenging. Some are not diagnosed until they are teenagers or adults.
But earlier, more accurate tests don’t fully explain the upward trend based on the CDC’s estimates.
Experts say waiting too long to have children may be partly responsible for the growth.
“Known Environmental conditionsFactors such as parental age may contribute. “Many parents in the metro area are waiting to have children at an older age,” Rutgers associate professor and lead author of the study, Josephine Schnoda, told the Post.
“There may be other environmental protections that have yet to be identified. [and] Biological causes that require further investigations,” she added.
According to the CDC, the rate of women having their first child after 40 doubled from 1990 to 2012. In New York, The rate has increased by 57% Between 2000 and 2012.
Meanwhile, according to the US Census Bureau data released last year, The average age of new mothers is now 30. – The highest on record.
Previous studies suggest that Mothers over 40 are 51% more likely to have a child with autism than mothers aged 25 to 29, and 77% more likely than mothers under 25.
A Rutgers study found that black children may be underdiagnosed with autism — especially if they don’t have an intellectual disability. While the racial disparity in autism diagnoses is shrinking — while partially explaining the increase in autism cases overall — the actual numbers are likely higher in this demographic.
“Historically, children living in less affluent areas and black and Hispanic children have had lower rates of autism,” Shenouda said. “Today, we will see [fewer] Distinguishing differences between those groups, however [they] It remains, and moving forward will continue to contribute to the development of autism as we address those differences.