Research data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that 1 in 44 children in the US live with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). One way to increase ASD awareness is to don the colors and symbols associated with it.
Read on to learn about some of these autism colors and symbols and what they represent.
What are the Colors for Autism?
No single color can represent autism in its entirety. That’s because each child with autism is unique, and their color preferences may differ.
The following are some of the colors often associated with autism.
The “Light It Up Blue” campaign championed by Autism Speaks has popularized the link between the color blue and autism.
The campaign occurs every April 2nd, which is set out as World Autism Awareness Day. On this day, the autism advocacy group calls on people from all walks of life to embrace the color light blue.
Activities include donning blue outfits. You can also add blue frames to your social media pages or use the hashtag #LightItUpBlue to raise autism awareness.
Blue gives off vibes of serenity, understanding, and acceptance, and it best depicts what children with autism are looking for.
The colors on the rainbow symbolize the diversity of children on the autism spectrum. The rainbow spectrum highlights the different autism symptoms and the abilities and obstacles faced by children with autism.
It often accompanies various symbols. These include the puzzle piece, the infinity symbol, or the ribbon.
People affected by autism want more than public awareness. Society may be aware of autism, but in many cases, this awareness does not result in inclusivity and acceptance in social circles. And this misses the mark a little.
This means that society has to drop the stigma surrounding the condition and accept people with autism in schools, workplaces, churches, and other social places.
Gold is something that people strive for because of its significant value. The gold color symbolizes the feeling of acceptance, which is what most people with autism look for.
There are several symbols out there related to autism. Here’s a low-down of some of the important symbols you can use.
The puzzle piece was the original symbol denoting autism. It was designed by Gerald Gasson, a board member of the UK’s National Autistic Society in 1963.
Mr. Gasson believed children with autism grappled with a “puzzling” condition. So he designed a logo of the puzzle piece with a crying child. It gave the impression that autism is a condition that kids suffer from.
Several variants of the puzzle piece logo have since emerged from the initial design. But the weeping child iconography is missing from most of them after public backlash.
Today, you’ll find solid blue or rainbow-colored puzzle pieces. These multi-colored pieces symbolize the hope and diversity of children with autism. But they also depict the mystery and complexity of autism.
The problem with the puzzle piece is that it reinforces the idea of isolation and stigma against individuals with autism. This has seen the introduction of the butterfly puzzle symbol as a replacement for the puzzle piece.
The butterfly represents diversity and the beauty of development. It looks beautiful after going through the different stages of its metamorphosis- the egg, larva, pupa, and adult stages.
The butterfly concept also mirrors the continued development of the person with autism. That’s because they learn new skills and abilities along the way, which makes them better in the long run.
Judy Singer, a parent of a child with autism, created the rainbow infinity symbol in the 1990s. The infinity symbol often appears laced with the colors of the rainbow. It is arguably the most popular symbol among persons with autism.
That’s because it inspires a sense of inclusivity, which means that everyone on the autism spectrum can feel accepted in social circles.
The A.L.S. Association
Formed in 1985, the A.L.S. Association is a national non-profit organization dedicated to research for the cure for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis or ALS. An incurable ailment, it is also called Lou Gehrig’s disease, after a popular baseball player who suffered from it.
ALS impairs nerve cells that control voluntary movement in the brain and spinal cord. It starts with muscle weakness in the limbs or slurred speech. Over time, it impairs the muscles that control movement, speech, and breathing.
The A.L.S. organization carries out several initiatives toward the treatment and cure of ALS:
- Research: The organization has spent over $120 million on global research projects to find a cure for ALS. This financial commitment has led to some novel ALS research breakthroughs to date, including the discovery of the C9orf72 gene.
- Public Policy: The organization’s public policy efforts have raised awareness about ALS. This has led to significant accomplishments. For example, the 24-month Medicare waiver, veteran benefits, and the National ALS registry.
- Centers of Excellence: The association has a countrywide network of certified centers of excellence. These locations provide up-to-date, multi-disciplinary ALS care and treatment to diagnosed patients.
May is the official ALS awareness month. The ALS organization sheds light on this fatal disease through different activities, such as volunteerism, donations, community events, and advocacy work.
The Bottom Line
There’s so much you can do to bring the spotlight on autism spectrum disorder. Wearing autism colors and symbols on World Autism Day on April 2 is a good starting point.
The different autism colors and symbols reflect the diversity of experiences faced by autism patients. It also helps you figure out the different autism symptoms. More importantly, these foster inclusion and integration in social circles.
If you are ready to work with the best ABA therapy provider in New York, New Jersey or Indiana, give us a call at (732) 402-0297. Our dedicated team is ready to help and we will treat you like family.
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