Autistic Children At Higher Risk for Bullying

A new study found that children diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder are at much higher risk for being bullied than other children. The study, published in the Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, found that 46 percent of 920 middle- and high-school students who have an autism disorder have been the victim of bullying.

Adolescents who have both autism and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder are at even greater risk, researchers found.

Children who have autism can have varying speech and social problems. Some children do not understand social cues. They may be completely unaware when someone is bullying them and less likely to report a problem.

Researchers urged teachers and school employees to encourage empathy among all students. Parents should ask their children every day about classroom experiences where bullying commonly occurs.

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