HARLINGEN, Texas (ValleyCentral) — For some parents, Autism may be challenging to identify because each child’s behavior may be different.

Patricia Rosenlund with the Easter Seals Rio Grande Valley said Autism can be diagnosed as early as 18 months. 

“There would be a lack of social engagement. Sometimes babies start to develop those skills where there’s a delay in language,” she said. 

When it comes to a delay in language, Rosenlund said that typically does not get diagnosed until the age of two or three.

Angela Flinchbaugh, Secretary of Big Heroes said there are not a lot of resources available for the Autism community, especially after high school.

She said it is important for autistic children to continue having guidance at the age of 18 and up because of the challenges they may face.

“There’s not a lot of things for them to do after they graduate from high school and that’s really what our program is about helping these young adults become part of society and contribute and be able to have a job,” said Flinchbaugh. 

According to Flinchbaugh, it is important to treat everyone the same and have them be part of our community. 

If you have any concerns with your child’s development at age 9 to 12 months, Rosenlund recommends speaking to a pediatrician or an early intervention program. 

Flinchbaugh said the Big Heroes nonprofit is hosting its second annual Autism Fun Run Walk on April 23 at Laguna Vista.  

If you are interested in registering for the Autism Fun Run Walk click here.