Autism is treatable. Primary treatments are educational (teaching those with autism ways to do things that may not come as easily for them) and compensatory (helping individuals use their strengths to make up for areas that are more difficult), as well as behavioral (assisting individuals to minimize behaviors that interfere with daily living, such as tantrums or self-injury).
Children do not "outgrow" autism, but studies show that early diagnosis and intervention lead to significantly improved outcomes. Treatment is a very intensive, comprehensive undertaking that involves the child's entire family and a team of professionals. Some programs may take place in the child's home with professionals and trained therapists and may include Parent Training for the child under supervision of a professional.
Some programs are delivered in a specialized center, classroom or preschool. Most families use one type of intensive intervention that best meets the needs of their child and their parenting style.
No single therapy works for every child. What works for one child may not work for another. What works for one child for a period of time may stop working. Some therapies are supported by research showing their efficacy, while others are not.
The skill, experience and style of the therapist are critical to the effectiveness of the intervention. Before a family chooses an intervention, they will need to investigate the claims of each therapy so that they understand the possible risks and benefits for a child.