Autism is a pervasive developmental disorder. So is Aspergers, as well as the diagnosis of PDD-NOS.
Unless a child meets the complete criteria for classic autism it shouldnt be considered " autistic".
The reason the numbers on autism is on the rise is because of how they lumped all the kids with pervasive developmental disorders together in one little tidy package and slap a nice little lable of autism on it.
This is why it is so misunderstood. This is why so many people are frustrated and this is why many people dont take autism serious and claim it is way to over diagnosed.
It isnt that yhese children are diagnosed. It is that they are all under one name that everyone has used for a long time and assosiate with classic autism.
PDD-NOS has some of the autism characteristics but doesnt meet the whole criteria for autism, so it shouldnt be called autism. It is what it is, Pervasive developmental disorder NOT OTHERWISE SPECIFIED.
Aspergers isnt classic autism. They seem to go back and for with Aspergers and not even know what to do with it. They want to lump it in a spectrum one minute then not in the next minute.
Why not just stick with specific diagnosis? Why lump everyone into a spectrum. Each of these children have different levels of problems. Stop confusing people with a spectrum. The numbers will stop rising and people will stop panicing or complaining. We are not doing yhese children a favore with lumping them together.