Early Signs Of Autism
Signs of autism in babies
Autism spectrum disorder is a developmental disorder, which means that signs become apparent as a child does not develop as expected, for example developing speech or learning to crawl later than expected.
As such, there are few signs of autism that are noticeable in newborns. However, if a baby fails to reach the developmental milestones expected at two months old, four months old, six months old, nine months old and a year old, this could be one of the first signs of autism or another developmental condition.
Good to know: Not all babies reach developmental milestones at the exact same time. It is normal to have some variation in development. If in doubt about a childÃ¢â¬â¢s development, check with a doctor.
Some of the early signs that a baby under one year old may have autism spectrum disorder include:
- Not babbling by four months old
- Not smiling by five months old
- Not laughing by six months old
- No interest in games like pat-a-cake or peek-a-boo by eight months old
- Not responding to their name by 12 months old
- Not looking at objects pointed out by other people by 12 months old
- Being upset by loud noises
- Not looking to a parent for comfort in new situations
- Being happy to play alone for long periods of time
- Not making eye contact
Signs of autism in toddlers
Some of the signs that a toddler, between one year old and two years old, may have autism spectrum disorder include:
Signs And Symptoms Of Speech And Language Difficulties In Autism
Children with autism spectrum disorders have difficulty with speech and language. Often, they start talking late.
- Speaks in an abnormal tone of voice, or with an odd rhythm or pitch
- Repeats the same words or phrases over and over
- Responds to a question by repeating it, rather than answering it
- Refers to himself in the third person
- Uses language incorrectly
- Has difficulty communicating needs or desires
- Doesnt understand simple directions, statements, or questions
- Takes what is said too literally
About Early Signs Of Autism
Some early signs of autism usually appear in the first 1-2 years of life.
Early signs of autism are listed below. Some children have many early signs, whereas others have only a few. The number of signs autistic children have varies according to their age and the effect that autism has on their everyday lives.
Sometimes early signs of autism change over time. For example, children might lose or stop using social-communication or language skills, or signs might become clearer as children get older.
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Obsessions In Children With Autism Examples And Solution Suggestions
Obsessive behaviors are used to mean some of the repetitive behaviors that are easily recognizable, and when they begin and when they will end. For example such as swinging in a sitting or standing position, biting fingers, nodding, knocking, twisting, throwing objects, and turning around.
John had obsessive behavior such as throwing objects into the air, especially throwing balls and sometimes shoes. Although these behaviors were not harmful to himself or others, John could spend his time doing more useful activities instead of doing these behaviors.
It is not fully understood why individuals with autism sometimes engage in obsessive behavior. However, it is thought that they do this type of behavior when they are empty, that is when they do not have any other activities to do. Therefore, obsessive behaviors are often a struggle against boredom. In such cases, interesting activities can be given to the person to prevent obsessive behavior.
Structured activities can be placed in the daily routine of the individual when behaviors such as swinging and twisting appear for the first time. However, more functional behavior modification applications may be needed for more advanced and intensity obsessive behaviors.
What Can You Do Here Are Some Tips
- Establish boundaries to a degree
Did your toddler throw everything out of his crib? Youll want to let him know kindly that some things are acceptable for throwing and other things that arent nice to throw .
Additionally, your toddler needs you to tell him that its not okay to throw things out of the crib or off the high chair. But by the same thread, you also need to show him where its okay to throw those things. Giving your toddler a safe place and safe objects to throw allows them to enjoy this newfound skill and practice it properly.
- Tackle angry throwing habits
Some children will throw things when theyre angry. At least all of them will try it once. Both of mine surely have. Even at this age, my youngest was upset she didnt win a board game, so she threw some of the pieces. At that moment, I told her that shes allowed to have her feelings but throwing things that arent meant to be thrown can hurt someone.
Ive got more tips on how to handle angry tots in just a moment, so keep reading.
- Consequences must be enacted
After having a chat with your child about throwing things, once the rules have been set, stick to them. If your child throws something they know they shouldnt or throws something in the house, take it away from them. Dont waver either, so they know you dont make idle threats.
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Repetitive Or Restrictive Behaviors
An autistic child who has adopted certain repetitive or restrictive behaviors may exhibit some of these signs:
- performs repetitive motions, such as flapping their hands, rocking back and forth, or spinning
- persistently or repeatedly lines up toys or other objects in an organized fashion
- gets upset or frustrated by small changes in their daily routine
- has to follow certain routines
- plays with toys the same way every time
- likes certain parts of objects
- has obsessive interests
Possible Results Of Obsessions
Communication problems and obsessive behaviors take first place among the symptoms of autism. The child who has developmental problems compared to his/her peers in terms of language and speech exhibits some problematic behaviors.
Tantrum: These are the situations seen in children with autism who are aged 2-5 years, caused by the inability to express their wishes verbally because they lack language and speaking skills. The child with insufficient vocabulary and low speaking skills exhibits behaviors such as kicking, yelling, crying, and throwing himself to the ground.
Self-harm: Self-hurtful obsessive behaviors such as biting oneself, hitting the head, scratching the face can be observed. The child is observed when he/she is angry, unwilling, or worried about something.
Damage the environment: Some children with autism damage the things around them when they get angry. Again, such situations are observed as a result of anxiety, anxiety, or irritation.
Eating and drinking problems: Eating and drinking problems are quite common in children with autism. It is necessary to be patient about those childrens eating behaviors, such as being selective and spending whole mealtimes with the same foods and drinks they like.
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Difference Of Autism Signs In Boys And Girls
The symptoms of ASD may range from mild to extreme, and there is no definitive list of symptoms that are sure to be shown by each and every child. On top of that, since boys are diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder four times more than girls , classic symptoms may be described in a way to refer more to the boys.
The symptoms are generally the same for the both. But, an autistic girl may be:
- hide their feelings better
- good at imitating social behaviors.
This can make the impairs seem much less noticeable compared to the case of boys. Also, the autism traits in girls are reported less by their teachers.
It is important to note that not all children with autism show all of the signs. In addition, many children who actually dont have autism may show a few of the symptoms and signs. That is why professional evaluation is of utmost importance.
There are certain developmental milestones children reach in terms of their language and social abilities. Caregivers should take notice of these milestones. They should observe children closely during the first few years of their lives. These are crucial times in terms of early diagnosis and intervention. Although not reaching a milestone at a specified time or achieving it late does not necessarily mean that the child has autism, it may be a sign of a developmental delay.
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Does The Child Naturally Imitate Play
Imitation is another form of communication, and is a key milestone on the road to verbal speech.
In addition to what Dr. Barbera mentions in her video, other communication signs that a child could have autism in addition to speech delay include a lack of response to their name and/or verbal attempts for attention, babbling and cooing during their first year and then stopping, and being unable to combine words into phrases or sentences .
Dr. Barbera recommends that concerned parents be familiar with milestones and not just those related to language. Self-care and self-regulation skills like feeding oneself and calming oneself are important to note, too. She emphasizes that there is a range in development, however, and not every two-year-old is doing everything. There is no need to panic if your child isnt meeting every milestone, but knowing what milestones they should be meeting can help put you on the right path to understanding what is going on with your child.
According to the CDC, if your child shows the signs Dr. Barbera mentioned and also cant walk, doesnt notice when their caregiver comes and goes, or loses skills at 18 months old, you should contact your pediatrician.
And if your child doesnt use two-word phrases, doesnt know what to do with common items , or doesnt walk steadily at two years old, the CDC recommends you contact your pediatrician.
Learn more in the video below.
Support Research & Therapy
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Difficulty Understanding Figurative Expressions
Often, children with autism also have trouble understanding that people sometimes express themselves figuratively. As mentioned, they may not derive any secondary meaning from demeanor or facial expressions. They may not also detect communication cues delivered through tone of voice for example, they cant distinguish a happy tone of voice from a sad or angry one, and unlike children following standard paths of development, they dont develop the ability to identify sarcasm or understand body language.
A related symptom is that autistic children tend to have more trouble distinguishing between whats real and what is make-believe. While most children have active imaginations and cant distinguish between fact and fiction the way older children and adults can, for autistic children, there often seems to be no line at all between whats real and whats imagined. Interestingly, autistic children may display an extremely vivid imagination, and some seem to prefer inhabiting their own imaginary worlds.
Signs Of Autism In Young Children
Symptoms of autism spectrum disorder are usually clear by two or three years old. The range of behaviors and skills covered here may become apparent between two years old and five years old.
Some signs that a child has autism spectrum disorder may include:
- Not expressing emotion or only a limited range of emotions
- Difficulty interpreting different emotions in others
- Not seeming attached to parents
- Lacking interest in playing social games or the company of other children
- Interest in playing with one particular toy or object
- Echolalia, repeating other peopleÃ¢â¬â¢s words or phrases
- Repeating own words over and over
- Using formal language and expressions, rather than the slang of their peers
- Not developing language skills at all
- Difficulty toilet training
- Challenging behaviour, such as banging head on wall or picking at skin
- Engages in behavior such as flapping hands, rocking or twirling
Children with autism spectrum disorder have difficulty interpreting what other people are thinking and feeling, and often miss social cues. A child with autism may not be able to tell the difference between an adult who says Ã¢â¬Åcome hereÃ¢â¬ï¿½ while happy and smiling, and an adult who says Ã¢â¬Åcome hereÃ¢â¬ï¿½ while angry and frowning. This can be confusing and creates the impression the child is not connecting with people.
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He Doesnt Share Interest With You Or Other Kids
According to Dr. Soorya, a typically developing child will want you to be involved in or see the things they are interested in. They point, they look at you and make sure youre looking at the same thing theyre looking at , she told me. Children with autism often dont seek this shared attention or show interest in wanting you to be involved in their play. The same goes for showing an interest in other kids.
They dont have to approach them, Dr. Soorya said, but looking at other children, being curious about what other kids are doing is an important developmental skill. This lack of shared interest is suggested as the reason many people with autism, including children, struggle with conversational skills and research has shown that when it is addressed, it can be improved.
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Rarely Shares Their Interests With You
Babies are eager to share their interests with you, first with gestures like showing and pointing, and then with sounds and words.
Notice what your baby is paying attention to to figure out what theyre interested in.
If your baby rarely their interests with you, this can be an early sign of autism.
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How Can We Help Reduce Or End Obsessions
Do obsession, routine, or repetitive behavior limit a persons opportunities, cause anxiety or discomfort, or have an impact on learning? If not, intervention may not be necessary. If its causing difficulties, they may need support to stop or change the behavior.
Detect function of behavior: Consider the function of repetitive behavior, routine, or obsession. Whats in the persons interest? Does it reduce anxiety or block noise?
Change the environment: What is the child uncomfortable within the classroom? Is it too bright? You may find that changing the environment can help reduce sensory disturbance. If the behavior is a way to get sensory input, look for alternative ways to get the same feeling.
Configure: Make the world a more structured and predictable place. A more structured environment can reduce anxiety, sometimes a reason for repetitive behavior. If the person seems bored or stressed, you can prepare a variety of fun or calming activities to reorient them. Try using visual aids , social stories, or pre-planning strategies to prepare for potentially stressful events or daily transition times. Visual organizers can help them understand abstract concepts such as time, plan what to do, in what order, and understand the concept of waiting.
Signs And Symptoms Of Nonverbal Communication Difficulties In Autism
Children with autism spectrum disorders have trouble picking up on subtle nonverbal cues and using body language. This makes the “give-and-take” of social interaction very difficult.
- Avoids eye contact
- Uses facial expressions that don’t match what he or she is 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
- Abnormal posture, clumsiness, or eccentric ways of moving
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Sensitivity To External Stimuli
Sensitivity to external stimuli is another early warning sign of autism. For example, autistic individuals may become stressed or agitated when exposed to specific noises, bright lights, or particular smells, tastes, or textures. They may also become hypersensitive to certain stimuli in other words, they will insist on wearing certain items of clothing or colors, prefer rooms with bright lights or loud sounds, and enjoy touching or playing with specific body parts. Many autistic children also display emotional stress when they are deprived of their preferred stimuli.
Alternately, the opposite can happen an autistic child may avoid certain colors, clothes, sounds, lights, or areas of the home for no apparent reason. If they are exposed to these stimuli, they may respond by lashing out or having unusually severe temper tantrums. Researchers theorize that children with autism have highly sensitive ways of mentally processing these stimuli, which leads to the unusual behavior and reactions.
Eye Contact Visual Stimming And Side Glancing In Autism
Posted May 29, 2017byTreat Autism
Why does your child with autism have trouble making eye contact, look out of the sides of their eyes, stim in front of their eyes or look at toys and people very closely ???
Years ago I watched a Ted Talk called How Brains Learn to See. As a Naturopathic Doctor who has been focusing on biomedical treatment of autism for the last 14 years, I had long suspected what Dr. Pawan Sinha discovered through his research, that children with autism have impaired visual processing which, in turn, slows down their ability to create both visual motor plans and motor plans needed for verbal communication.
Difficulties with motor planning is a core issue in autism. The stronger the motor planning, the stronger the communication, social and learning skills. So how do we support motor planning in children with autism spectrum disorder?
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Behavioural Signs In Infants Between 6 And 12 Months Can Predict Asd
A 2005 Canadian study published in the International Journal of Developmental Neuroscience, with over 200 participants was the first to pinpoint specific behavioural signs in infants as young as 12 months that can predict, with remarkable accuracy, whether a child will develop autism.
Autism is one of the most prevalent disorders today, and while a bio marker was finally found last year to help with early diagnosis, its normally only 80% effective, and so far mostly being used on higher risk infants. Also it is found using an MRI, and wait times can be long. Most doctors instead must rely on parent observations, observing the child themselves, and using standardized tools like the Checklist for Autism in Toddlers . However these tools are made for children who are 18 months and older, a long time especially when early detection and intervention can help with many of the frustrations that develop from communication problems.
Because of the research done, a scale was developed to help doctors with early assessment in infants as young as 6 months . The Autism Observation Scale for Infants has been a fantastic new tool to help parents and doctors get an early diagnosis.