A brain development issue called autism spectrum disorder affects how a person sees and interacts with other people, leading to difficulties with communication and social interaction. Restricted and recurring behavioral patterns are another feature of the illness. In autism spectrum disorder, the term “spectrum” describes the broad range of symptoms and severity.
Previously diagnosed as distinct disorders, autism spectrum disorder includes Asperger’s syndrome, childhood disintegrative disorder, autism, and an unidentified type of pervasive developmental disability. The milder end of autism spectrum disorder is widely considered to be “Asperger’s syndrome,” a name that is still occasionally used.
Early childhood diagnosis of autism spectrum condition eventually results in difficulties interacting with others, in the workplace, and in educational settings. In the first year of life, children with autism frequently exhibit symptoms. A very small fraction of infants appear to develop normally throughout the first year of life, and then, between the ages of 18 and 24 months, they have a regression phase during which they begin to show symptoms of autism.
Even though there is no known cure for autism spectrum disease, many children can benefit greatly from rigorous, early therapy.
Early infancy can see some infant’s exhibit symptoms of autism spectrum condition, such as decreased eye contact, a lack of reaction to their name, or apathy toward caretakers. Some kids could grow up properly for the first few months or years of their lives, but then all of a sudden they start acting distant or violent, or they stop using the language they’ve previously learned. At two years old, signs often appear.
From low functioning to high functioning, every kid with autism spectrum condition is likely to have a different pattern of behavior and severity.
A subset of children diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder has lower-than-normal intellect, and others have trouble learning. Some children with the disease have normal to high intellect; they pick things up fast but struggle with social interactions, communication, and implementing what they learn.
Determining the severity of a child’s symptoms might occasionally be challenging because of their individual blend. Usually, it depends on the severity of the impairments and how they affect one’s capacity to operate.
Some typical symptoms shown by individuals with autism spectrum disorder are listed below.
Social communication and interaction
Any of the following symptoms might indicate that a child or adult with autism spectrum condition struggles with communication and social interaction:
- sometimes seems not to hear you or doesn’t react when you call out their name
- refuses to be held or cuddled, appearing to prefer playing by themselves and withdrawing into their own world
- lacks expressiveness and makes bad eye contact
- speaks silently, speaks slowly, or loses the capacity to articulate words or phrases
- Unable to initiate or maintain a conversation, or only initiates one in order to make requests or categorize things
- uses a sing-song voice or a robotic voice, and they may speak with an unusual cadence or tone.
- verbatim repeats words or phrases without understanding how to utilize them
- Does not seem to comprehend basic instructions or queries
- doesn’t show empathy or sentiment and seems oblivious to the sentiments of others
- Does not bring things to convey interest or point at them
- improperly enters a social situation by becoming withdrawn, combative, or disruptive
- finds it difficult to read nonverbal signs from others, such as their tone of voice, body language, or facial expressions
A child or adult diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder may have restricted, recurring interests, activities, or behavioral patterns, such as any of the following:
- makes repeated motions with their hands, such as flapping, spinning, or rocking.
- engages in behaviors that have the potential to be harmful to oneself, such biting or head bangs
- forms specialized habits or rituals and feels agitated at the smallest deviation
- features unusual, rigid, or exaggerated body language, as well as issues with coordination or unusual movement patterns, such as clumsiness or walking on toes.
- is enthralled with an object’s minute characteristics, like a toy car’s spinning wheels, but is unaware of the object’s larger use or purpose
- is remarkably sensitive to touch, light, or sound, but may not care about pain or temperature
- Does not play pretend or imitate others
- fixations with unusual intensity or focus on a thing or activity
- possesses certain dietary habits, such as limiting their intake or avoiding certain meals due to their texture
Some kids with autism spectrum disorder exhibit less behavioral problems and are more socially engaged as they get older. Eventually, some people—typically the ones with the least serious issues—may have regular or almost normal lives. Some, on the other hand, still struggle with language or social skills, and adolescence can exacerbate emotional and behavioral issues.
When to see a doctor
Infants grow at their own rate, and many don’t conform to the precise schedules provided in some parenting guides. However, before the age of two, children with autism spectrum condition typically exhibit some indicators of impaired development.
Talk to Child Counsellor if you have worries about your child’s development or if you think they could have autism spectrum disorder. There may be connections between the disorder’s symptoms and those of other developmental diseases.
Early development is when autism spectrum disorder symptoms frequently surface, when language and social interaction difficulties are evident. In order to determine whether your kid has impairments in cognitive, verbal, or social abilities, your doctor could advise developmental testing if your child:
- doesn’t reply after six months with a grin or joyful attitude
- By nine months, doesn’t copy facial expressions or noises
- doesn’t coo or gabble by the age of twelve
- does not make any gestures, such pointing or waving, until 14 months.
- Says no words at 16 months of age
- By 18 months, no “make-believe” or pretending is being done.
- By 24 months, doesn’t use two-word sentences
- loses social or linguistic abilities at any age
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