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  3. LEVEL 2 CERTIFICATE IN UNDERSTANDING AUTISM ANSWERS
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  5. Introduction to Autism
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  7. 3.3. Give reasons why people may be reluctant...

3.3. Give reasons why people may be reluctant to seek a diagnosis

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This page is designed to answer the following questions:

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There can be numerous reasons why individuals or their parents/carers may be reluctant to seek a diagnosis for autism.

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Despite increasing awareness about autism and other neurodiverse conditions, there is still a significant amount of stigma and misunderstanding surrounding autism. Some people fear the social implications of an autism diagnosis, worrying that they or their child might be treated differently or face discrimination.

Similarly, there can be concerns about the impact of labeling a child with a diagnosis. Some worry that the child may become defined by their diagnosis or limited by lower expectations. Others worry about the psychological impact of a diagnosis on the child’s self-esteem and self-perception.

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Parents or individuals might be in denial about the symptoms they’re observing, especially if they’re mild or ambiguous. The prospect of having a lifelong condition like autism can be daunting, and some people might be afraid to face that reality. In addition, some adults who suspect they might be on the autism spectrum might be reluctant to seek a diagnosis because they’re worried it could affect their job prospects or other aspects of their lives.

Some people may not be aware of the signs and symptoms of autism or might not realize that autism can look very different in different people. They might think of autism as a severe condition and might not realize that it also includes people who are high-functioning.

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Finally, getting a diagnosis can be a lengthy, complex, and sometimes expensive process. Not everyone can easily access the healthcare professionals who can diagnose autism, particularly in rural or underserved areas. Some individuals may simply believe that a diagnosis will not make any difference to who they are and so it is a pointless process.

While these concerns are understandable, it’s also essential to realize that there can be benefits to obtaining a diagnosis for autism. These include access to support and services, a better understanding of one’s strengths and challenges, and the potential for improved self-advocacy. It’s also worth noting that societal understanding and acceptance of autism are improving, although there is still a long way to go.

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