Rite Aid X PATH Autism Awareness Month 10 Things Everyone Should Know
April is Autism Awareness Month! Through our partnership with Rite Aid, we were introduced to their Beverage Category Manager, Marcel Olivella. We learned about Marcel's journey of raising a child with Autism, which inspired our team, to come together and raise awareness for the Autism community. It's estimated that 1 in 44 children in the US has been diagnosed with Autism, impacting communication, social interaction, and behavior.
We’re excited to do our part to help raise awareness and support for the neurodiversity of those with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) through a thoughtfully designed, reusable PATH bottle. Our goal was to amplify the voices of the Autism community and recognize that, while it’s not always easy, those with ASD have incredible gifts that are important to celebrate.
Our limited edition Autism Awareness PATH bottle features a pastel color palette that evokes feelings of safety and calmness. The pastel hues represent the wide-ranging differences among people with autism, showcasing the unique strengths and challenges experienced. The bottle represents love, family, and togetherness so that everyone can participate.
Our Autism Awareness PATH bottle is a small way to show support and help us spread the word and empower those with ASD. You can get a bottle at Rite Aid and keep it forever.
We hope our efforts will encourage more people to learn about ASD and what it means to be neurodivergent. Together, we can create a more inclusive and compassionate world for everyone.
10 things everyone should know about Autism
- Autism is a uniquely human experience that affects about 1 in every 44 children on a spectrum, meaning symptoms affect individuals differently. Another word often used is “neurodivergent,” a non-medical term that means having a brain that forms or works differently.
- Autism is a neurodevelopmental variation that brings diversity to communication, social interaction, and behavior. Individuals with ASD possess distinct ways of engaging in verbal and nonverbal communication, such as employing alternative methods for eye contact, interpreting sarcasm, or utilizing gestures in their own way. This diversity enriches our understanding of human interaction and cognitive processes.
- Reassuringly, extensive research confirmed the safety of vaccines and debunked the myth that they contribute to Autism, while also emphasizing that parenting styles are not responsible for Autism. This understanding fosters compassion and support for families and individuals with ASD as they navigate life's unique challenges.
- Of children meeting the criteria for Autism, boys are diagnosed more than girls, with a ratio of 3:1.
- While ASD is considered lifelong, the degree of functioning varies between individuals, and tailored evidence-based treatment can empower people with Autism.
- An estimated 90% of children with ASD possess unique sensory processing abilities, which may include heightened or reduced reactivity to sensory input. By recognizing and understanding these distinctive sensory experiences, we can better support and accommodate children with ASD, fostering a more inclusive and nurturing environment for their growth and development.
- Autism is characterized by a unique feature known as hyperfocus, which is responsible for all 52 observable traits of the condition. Hyperfocus refers to a persistent and unwavering state of deep concentration that centers on a single thought pattern. Analysis of the personal lives of several renowned historical figures suggests that they exhibited autistic hyperfocus, including Thomas Jefferson, Charles Darwin, Thomas Edison, Nikola Tesla, and Albert Einstein.
- 70 to 95% of individuals with Autism also experience co-occurring conditions such as anxiety, depression, or attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). By acknowledging these additional aspects of their neurodiversity, we can create more comprehensive support systems tailored to their needs, ultimately fostering a more inclusive and understanding society that encourages personal growth and well-being.
- People with Autism may experience sensory overload or underload, which can affect their ability to navigate everyday environments. For example, a person with Autism may be overwhelmed by the sound of a crowded room or may not notice when they've been touched. This can lead to behaviors that may seem disruptive to others but are coping mechanisms for managing sensory input.
- 75 to 95% of people with Autism have special interests or hobbies that they are incredibly passionate about. These interests may be highly focused, such as memorizing facts about a particular topic or may involve repetitive behaviors like collecting or organizing objects. While these interests may seem different to others, they can provide a sense of comfort and stability to the person with Autism and may even lead to talents or strengths that can be developed and celebrated.
The PATH x Rite Aid partnership Autism Awareness Bottle is just one example of how we can come together to raise awareness and support for those affected by Autism. It's a reminder to us all that even small acts of kindness and understanding can make a big difference in the lives of those around us. You can find the Autism Awareness bottle at all Rite Aid locations nationwide during Autism Awareness Month in April and through May.
Study: Baio, J. (2018). Prevalence of Autism Spectrum Disorder Among Children Aged 8 Years — Autism and Developmental Disabilities Monitoring Network, 11 Sites, United States, 2014.
Loomes, R., Hull, L., & Mandy, W. P. (2017). What Is the Male-to-Female Ratio in Autism Spectrum Disorder? A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis. Journal of the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, 56(6), 466-474.
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