A recently published study in the journal Child Development explored the sensory changes occurring during early childhood in a diverse sample of autistic children.
As part of a North Carolina birth cohort consisting of more than 1,500 young children across infancy, preschool, and school years.
The parental figures of the young participants were asked on their children’s symptom severity and subsequent developmental outcomes.
“Change rates of sensory hyper- and hyporesponsiveness better differentiated children with an autism diagnosis or elevated autistic traits from those with other developmental conditions, including non-autistic children with sensory differences,” according to the study’s authors.
“More sensory hyper- and hyporesponsiveness at infancy followed by steeper increases differentially predicted more autistic traits at school age.”
“Further, children of parents with higher education tended to show stable or improving trajectories,” the authors also mentioned in their findings.
“These findings highlight the importance of tracking sensory patterns from infancy for facilitating early identification of associated challenges and tailored support for families.”