Adult autism diagnosis
Individuals with mild form of ASD can go undiagnosed for years. A diagnosis later in life can be difficult as the person has become used to masking or managing the symptoms, their early developmental milestones might not have been recorded.
Gender autism diagnosis
According to studies, males are more likely to be diagnosed with ASD than females. The ratio of autistic males to females diagnosed with autism is estimated at 3 to 1.
Several factors influence this gender bias in getting an autism diagnosis:
- Autism assessment tools have been built around on autistic male characteristics, and autistic females have characteristics which don’t fit with this profile.
- Women and girls are better at masking or camouflaging their difficulties.
- Autism traits in girls are under-reported by teachers.
- Autism is an exaggeration of normal gender differences.
- A range of biological factors may mean men and boys have a higher prevalence of autism.
As a result, autistic females are often not diagnosed, misdiagnosed or diagnosed at a later stage of their life. There is a need to develop specific diagnostic tests for women and girls.