Many autism interventions target early social communication, skills such as joint attention and imitation. These researchers conducted a meta-analysis of 41 social communication intervention studies for children with autism under the age of six years old. They found medium, significant effects on child use of eye contact, gestures, play, joint attention, and imitation. The results also showed that the younger children were at the beginning of intervention, the greater the effect of the intervention. These results suggest that earlier intervention may be more effective than later intervention. Future research should analyze which specific interventions resulted in positive outcomes. Accessibility of these interventions to providers should be considered as well.
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