Autism cases are once again on the rise in the U.S. A new report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that as many as 1 in 68 eight-year-olds fall somewhere on the autism disorder spectrum.
About a decade ago, the CDC began tracking autism cases around the country. Every two years since, they have released data about the number of diagnoses. And every two years, those numbers seem to go up dramatically. In 2010, it was 1 in 110 kids. In 2012, it was 1 in 88. In 2014, it has risen once again, this time to 1 in 68.
And despite at least a decade of studies, researchers are still no better equipped to answer the question of why these cases are increasing than they were ten years ago. One could argue that rising awareness and better access to resources might influence the number of cases diagnosed each year. But the very scary fact is that the number of children with autism continues to grow each year.
Once again, boys were shown to be more susceptible to the condition. The rate of autism among eight-year old boys was 1 in 42 — far higher than the rate in girls — 1 in 189.
Autism rates also varied by race and geographic location, although this probably has more to do with the access of health care services. Alabama had the lowest rate — 1 in 175, whereas New Jersey had the highest at 1 in 45. The autism rate among white children was 1 in 63, which was 30 percent higher than for black children and 50 percent higher than for Latino children.
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