According to the Center for Disease Control, symptoms of autism can be detected as early as 12 months of age. By 6 months most babies can react to facial expressions and sounds in the environment by looking or orienting in the direction of the speaker or sound and even smiling. At 9 months, infants will begin to engage in reciprocal sounds, expressions, interactions. Interactive games such as peek-a-boo and cooing with you child may occupy much of your time together. Most children by 12 months old can respond to their name (looking, orienting), engaged in baby talk, point, reach, and grab desired items. By 16 months, babies can understand approximately 120 words and speak about 40. Early intervention is designed to build upon many of these foundational skills to help your child meet their developmental milestones.