Autism spectrum disorder and the masks we wear
“In the ongoing saga of the pandemic, there is the debate whether to wear a mask or not. These are physical masks that temporarily hide our face, but we all wear another type of mask, a metaphorical mask. These are the masks we put on to present who we want the world to see. People who are referred to as having “high functioning autism” often put on the greatest masks of all; masks that society does not allow them to take off. “High functioning autism” is a term used to describe people with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) that have average or above IQ level and good language ability, which currently is about 44 percent of autistic people. As our understanding of autism expands, this number will grow. It is this group that is often left behind in advocating for individuals with ASD. The term “high functioning autism” obfuscates the real struggles that they endure. You may not realize there is a person with autism in your world hiding behind a mask that you could help.”
Lisa Yeh is a psychiatrist.
She shares her story and discusses her KevinMD article, “Autism spectrum disorder and the masks we wear.”
Reflect and earn 1.0 AMA PRA Category 1 CME for this episode.
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