Monday, June 24, 2024

Does My Son Have Autism Or Adhd

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What Are The Possible Signs And Symptoms Of Asd Vs Adhd

Does my Son have Autism & ADHD?

Possible signs and symptoms of autism spectrum disorder may include when a child:

  • Seems disengaged.
  • Avoids eye contact and/or physical contact.
  • Has difficulty following directions due to speech and language delays.
  • Has emotional outbursts or tantrums.
  • Has anxiety, frustration, and communication difficulties.
  • Has difficulty socializing.
  • Shows self-soothing behaviors that are often repeated .
  • Has obsessive interests.
  • Has difficulty understanding nonverbal cues.
  • Has difficulty with safety/danger awareness.

Possible signs and symptoms of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder may include when a child:

  • Is forgetful and easily distracted.
  • Has trouble listening and following directions.
  • Shows frustration or lack of impulse control that can lead to emotional tantrums.
  • Has inadequate organizational abilities and difficulty completing tasks.
  • Has difficulty staying focused.
  • Has problems sitting still during quiet activities .
  • Has difficulty being patient/waiting for turns.
  • Is hyperactive.
  • Interrupts others and blurts out inappropriate things.
  • Has difficulty with nonverbal cues and personal space impulsivity.
  • Has difficulty understanding the consequences of actions.
  • Plays rough and takes physical risks.

Effect of both conditions on a childâs early life


  • Poor social communication skills and rigid behaviors, making it difficult to establish and sustain friendships.


Whats The Relationship Between Adhd And Autism

Your child has been diagnosed with ADHD. But these four letters alone are not sufficient to explain all of her struggles. Now you may wonder whether she has ADHD or autism or both.

Nearly two-thirds of kids with ADHD have been found with at least one co-existing condition. Some studies have given evidence that up to half of the kids with autism are the sufferers of ADHD as well.

Signs And Symptoms Of Autism In Babies And Toddlers

If autism is caught in infancy, treatment can take full advantage of the young brains remarkable plasticity. Although autism is hard to diagnose before 24 months, symptoms often surface between 12 and 18 months. If signs are detected by 18 months of age, intensive treatment may help to rewire the brain and reverse the symptoms.

The earliest signs of autism involve the absence of typical behaviorsnot the presence of atypical onesso they can be tough to spot. In some cases, the earliest symptoms of autism are even misinterpreted as signs of a good baby, since the infant may seem quiet, independent, and undemanding. However, you can catch warning signs early if you know what to look for.

Some autistic infants dont respond to cuddling, reach out to be picked up, or look at their mothers when being fed.

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Getting Prepared For What Your Paediatrician May Ask For

In order to diagnose Autism, doctors would usually follow a Process of Elimination

  • Complete Medical History Now is the time to ask questions about your childs play, emotions and behavior. Your doctor or the pediatric specialist will follow the core diagnostic guidelines set up by The American Association of Childhood and Adolescent Psychiatry
  • Clinical Observation your child would be put in different situations. You would be asked, if their reaction is normal
  • Developmental and Intelligence tests would be conducted
  • Physical exam to make sure your child exhibits a normal growth pattern
  • Hearing test to rule out audibility as an issue
  • Testing for lead poisoning , as a child with autism would continue to put things in their mouth long after the normal phase. Since Pica is also caused by Lead poisoning, a negative test for lead poisoning could strengthen the case for Autism Spectrum Disorder
  • Possible chromosomal analysis if any intellectual disability is observed
  • If your child has symptoms or had seizures and electroencephalograph may also be performed
  • The possibility of MRI scan if there appear to be signs of differences in the formation of the brain

Adhd Vs Autism: Telling Them Apart

How Do I Know If My Child Has ADHD?

There are several things that ADHD and Autism have in common. In fact, a child may even have both ADHD as well as Autism. Medical specialists continue to research the overlap between the conditions, with current estimates showing that 30-50% of children with Autism also have symptoms of ADHD. Some of the symptoms that a child with either condition might display include:

  • Difficulty understanding and responding to social cues
  • Difficulty paying attention to what people are saying
  • Tendency to fidget or interrupt during conversations
  • Tendency to do impulsive or apparently illogical things
  • Difficulty following instructions or rules
  • Meltdowns and/or tantrums
  • Sensitivity to sensory inputs like sounds or smells

There are, however, distinct symptoms that set each condition apart. When trying to determine between ADHD and Autism as an explanation for your childs behavioral tendencies, keep the following in mind.

Also Check: Printable Visual Schedules For Students With Autism

What If Its Not Adhd

There are other disorders and difficulties that may have similar symptoms of ADHD. For example, bipolar disorder, autism, sensory processing disorders, sleep disorders and hearing problems might all lead to symptoms that can look like ADHD. In addition, some normal childhood behavior can include some impulsiveness, hyperactivity and inattention.

How Do You Talk With Your Child About Their Autism Diagnosis

It can be hard to decide what and how much information to share when talking to your child about their autism diagnosis. Setting a positive tone when discussing autism spectrum disorder and making sure you understand what your child is truly asking is very important. Establish a positive attitude about their differences from the outset, then answer their questions simply and honestly. If your child is of reading age, you may want to consider finding some childrens books on the topic of autism spectrum disorder to read with them.

Recommended Reading: How To Tell If You Re Autistic

Helping Your Child With Autism Thrive Tip : Provide Structure And Safety

Learning all you can about autism and getting involved in treatment will go a long way toward helping your child. Additionally, the following tips will make daily home life easier for both you and your child with ASD:

Be consistent. Children with ASD have a hard time applying what theyve learned in one setting to others, including the home. For example, your child may use sign language at school to communicate, but never think to do so at home. Creating consistency in your childs environment is the best way to reinforce learning. Find out what your childs therapists are doing and continue their techniques at home. Explore the possibility of having therapy take place in more than one place in order to encourage your child to transfer what he or she has learned from one environment to another. Its also important to be consistent in the way you interact with your child and deal with challenging behaviors.

Stick to a schedule. Children with ASD tend to do best when they have a highly-structured schedule or routine. Again, this goes back to the consistency they both need and crave. Set up a schedule for your child, with regular times for meals, therapy, school, and bedtime. Try to keep disruptions to this routine to a minimum. If there is an unavoidable schedule change, prepare your child for it in advance.

Aspergers Adhd And Odd

Do I have ADHD? (Taking the ADHD test as an Adult on the Autism Spectrum) –


  • Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder
  • Bipolar Disorder
  • Depression
  • Generalized Anxiety Disorder
  • Obsessive Compulsive Disorder
  • Oppositional Defiant Disorder

DSM delineates the criteria for ODD as follows: Facts on Oppositional Defiant Disorder

  • 15% of ODD kids develop some form of personality disorder
  • 20% of kids with ODD have some form of mood disorder, such as Bipolar Disorder or anxiety
  • 35% of these kids develop some type of affective disorder
  • 50-65% of ODD kids also have ADD or ADHD
  • 75% of kids with Oppositional Defiant Disorder above the age of eight will still be defiant later in life
  • Kids with CD and ODD are also at high risk for criminality and antisocial personality disorders in adulthood
  • Many of these kids have learning disorders
  • ODD is more common in boys than in girls before puberty
  • ODD is reported to affect between 2 and 16 percent of kids
  • Once kids enter adolescence, it is extremely difficult for moms and dads to change the ODD behavior

Symptoms of Oppositional Defiant Disorder

  • actively defies or refuses to comply with adults’ requests or rules
  • argues with adults
  • blames others for his or her mistakes
  • deliberately annoys people
  • mean and hateful talking when upset
  • often being touchy or easily annoyed by others
  • seeking revenge

Causes of Oppositional Defiant DisorderTreatment of Oppositional Defiant DisorderWhat Moms and Dads Can Do

  • Avoid power struggles.
  • Build on the positives.
  • Exercise and relax. Use respite care as needed.
  • Read Also: Broader Autism Phenotype

    Getting The Proper Support

    The first step in helping your child get the proper support is getting a correct diagnosis. You may need to seek out a child behavior disorder specialist.

    A lot of pediatricians and general practitioners dont have the specialized training to understand the combination of symptoms. Pediatricians and general practitioners may also miss another underlying condition that complicates support plans.

    Managing the symptoms of ADHD can help your child manage the symptoms of ASD, too. The behavioral techniques your child will learn may help lessen the symptoms of ASD. Thats why getting the proper diagnosis and adequate support is so vital.

    Behavioral therapy can be helpful for ADHD, and is recommended as the first line of support for children under the age of 6. For children over the age of 6, behavioral therapy is recommended with medication.

    Some medications commonly used to treat ADHD include:

    • methylphenidate
    • mixed amphetamine salts

    How To Test A Child For Autism

    You may ask your childs healthcare provider to periodically check your child for signs of autism with a developmental screening test. A screening test alone will not result in a diagnosis but can indicate if your child should see a specialist. A developmental pediatrician, child psychologist or psychiatrist, pediatric neurologist, speech-language pathologist, occupational therapist, or other specialist can conduct a formal developmental evaluation.

    Recommended Reading: Why Is The Symbol For Autism A Puzzle Piece

    What Are Some Early Signs Of Autism In Toddlers

    When a baby becomes a toddler, various developmental differences, signs and symptoms may become more apparent with the growing age of the child.

    During their first year, toddlers with autism spectrum disorder may not:

    • like seeing new faces,
    • may not be able to walk, or w__alk only on their toes__
    • may find certain sounds, tastes and smells upsetting,
    • may fall into repetitive movements, like flapping their hands.

    These signs may be more noticeable compared to the signs presented early on. However, the majority of children with autism are not diagnosed before the age of two due to missed signs by caregivers, or lack of access to specialists.

    When They Occur Together

    Does My Child Have Autism?

    There may be a reason why symptoms of ADHD and ASD can be difficult to distinguish from one another. Both can occur at the same time.

    Not every child can be clearly diagnosed. A doctor may decide only one of the disorders is responsible for your childs symptoms. In other cases, children may have both conditions.

    According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention , 14 percent of children with ADHD also have ASD. In one study from 2013, children with both conditions had more debilitating symptoms than children who didnt exhibit ASD traits.

    In other words, children with ADHD and ASD symptoms were more likely to have learning difficulties and impaired social skills than children who only had one of the conditions.

    Recommended Reading: Broader Autistic Phenotype

    Does My Child Have Adhd

    Parents and teachers might mistake ADHD for emotional or disciplinary problems. And some children with ADHD may often be well-behaved, quiet or not exhibit all the signs and symptoms of ADHD. Some children that have ADHD may not be diagnosed with ADHD until later in life, and miss out on help and treatment. If you have any questions about your child, you can consult a healthcare professional. 10 Signs of ADHD

    Adhd And Autism Together

    So, what about when your child has both?

    Doctors recommend that you treat ADHD and Autism as two separate diagnoses. Generally, medications such as methylphenidate , amphetamine , atomoxetine , and guanfacine work well at reducing the major symptoms associated with ADHD such as the hyperactivity, the impulsiveness, and the inattention aspects. I can categorically say for my son they have been incredible, and school has a seen a massive improvement.

    There are, however, very few medications for ASD and are often less effective. Behavioural therapy is generally recommended for ASD. Occupational and speech therapy is suggested to aid with social skills and speech. Speak to your GP and/or school for help in finding someone suitable for your child.

    As I say, I am no expert, especially with regards to Autism/ASD so I would love any feedback or input on ASD. I am on a learning journey myself. My two children have ADHD, but I was interested to see why ASD, and ADHD can sometimes be mistaken. From what I can see, many of the observable behaviours can be similar yet it is more about the reasoning or causation for these behaviours that is behind the diagnosis. Wrongly diagnosing a child can be so detrimental as each diagnosis requires a totally different treatment plan. I hope this has helped. x

    Read Also: Average Life Span Of Autism

    The Relationship Between Adhd And Autism

    When a school-aged child cant focus on tasks or in school, parents may think their child has attention deficit hyperactivity disorder . Difficulty concentrating on homework? Fidgeting and difficulty sitting still? An inability to make or maintain eye contact?

    All of these are symptoms of ADHD.

    These symptoms do match what most people understand about the common neurodevelopmental disorder. Even many doctors might gravitate toward that diagnosis. Yet, ADHD might not be the only answer.

    Before an ADHD diagnosis is made, its worth understanding how ADHD and autism can be confused, and understand when they overlap.

    There are three types of ADHD:

    • predominantly hyperactive-impulsive
    • predominantly inattentive
    • combination

    The combined type of ADHD, where you experience both inattentive and hyperactive-impulsive symptoms, is the most common.

    The average age of diagnosis is 7 years old and boys are much more likely to be diagnosed with ADHD than girls, although this may be because it presents differently.

    Autism spectrum disorder , another childhood condition, also affects an increasing number of children.

    ASD is a group of complex disorders. These disorders affect behavior, development, and communication. About 1 in 68 U.S. children has been diagnosed with ASD. Boys are four-and-a-half times more likely to be diagnosed with autism than girls.

    Heres a comparison of the two conditions and their symptoms:

    ADHD symptoms

    Signs Of Nonverbal Communication Difficulties

    Finding Out My Son Has Autism, Dyslexia & ADHD Getting a late Autism Diagnosis | Autism and Dyslexia
    • Avoids eye contact.
    • Uses facial expressions that dont match what they are saying
    • Doesnt pick up on other peoples facial expressions, tone of voice, and gestures.
    • Makes very few gestures . May come across as cold or robot-like.
    • Reacts unusually to sights, smells, textures, and sounds. May be especially sensitive to loud noises. Can also be unresponsive to people entering/leaving, as well as efforts by others to attract the childs attention.
    • Atypical posture, clumsiness, or eccentric ways of moving .

    Children with autism spectrum disorder have trouble picking up on subtle nonverbal cues and using body language. This makes the give-and-take of social interaction very difficult.

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    Who Tells/where To Tell

    Certainly circumstances vary from family to family. If your child is asking questions dont put off answering them. You should be forthcoming and not suggest talking about it later. Not providing an answer could increase the childs anxiety and make the topic and information more mysterious.

    For many families, using a knowledgeable professional to begin the disclosure process instead of a family member or a friend of the family might be the best option. Having a professional involved, at least in the beginning stages of disclosure, leaves the role of support and comfort to the family and those closest to the child. For someone with an autism spectrum disorder, it can be especially hard to seek comfort from someone who gives you news that can be troubling and confusing. Having a professional whose role is clearly to discuss information about the childs diagnosis and how the disability is affecting his/herlife can make it easier for family members to be seen by the child as supportive. The professional discussing information with the child about his/her disability can also help the parents understand the childs reaction and provide suggestions for supporting their child. Having a professional involved also allows the use of a location outside of the family home for beginning this process.

    Does My Child Have Adhdor Autism

    Autism and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder can appear to be similar conditions because children who have either disorder may struggle to focus. They also tend to have social issues or may appear to disregard other peoples feelings at times.

    Both conditions may also cause atypical language skills and an impaired ability to learn. This may lead to trouble with social interactions, playtime, and schoolwork.

    One of the easiest ways to begin to determine which disorder a child may have involves observing how the child pays attention. Children with autism find it hard to focus on objects or tasks that they do not like.

    For example, they may not be able to put puzzles together and may fidget with one puzzle piece for an extended period of time instead of attempting to do the puzzle. Eye contact avoidance, poor or no communication, a lack of interest in communicating, and appearing to be in a daze are also characteristic traits of autism.

    Conversely, children with ADHD tend to perform tasks rapidly or in a hyperactive manner. They may also lose interest quickly in tasks they have to concentrate on. As a result, they constantly jump from one activity to another.

    In addition, they tend to be so talkative that conversations or group activities are frequently disrupted. Sitting still is extremely difficult for children with this condition as well. If they are forced to sit, they usually fidget uncontrollably.


    Also Check: Autistic Life Expectancy

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