Although autism only affects around 1% of the world population at the moment, it's one of the fastest-growing developmental disabilities in the world. Most of you will have heard the words "autism" or "autistic" at some point in your lives, and a lot of people often ask the question, what is autism?

Autism is a lifelong disability which mainly affects how a person communicates, relates to other people and how they perceive the world around them. People who are autistic often deal with difficulties in social imagination, communication and interaction, and these three main areas are often referred to as the "triad of impairments".

Did you know, 1% of the adult population in the United Kingdom has autism spectrum disorder? Although that doesn't seem like a huge figure, that's around 5.5 million adults. Find out more within the visual below...

Autism Infographic

Family and social life is often much harder for those who are autistic, as it can be a struggle to relate to other people, and therefore it becomes more difficult to form relationships.

In order to give you a better idea of the worldwide scale of autism and how it affects peoples everyday life, we've created an infographic to outline the key facts surrounding autism along with some interesting statistics regarding the costs of services that treat those with autism.