Social Communication / Interaction Behaviors May Include:
- Making little or inconsistent eye contact
- Tending not to look at or listen to people
- Rarely sharing enjoyment of objects or activities by pointing or showing things to others
- Failing to, or being slow to, respond to someone calling their name or to other verbal attempts to gain attention
- Having difficulties with the back and forth of conversation
- Often talking at length about a favorite subject without noticing that others are not interested or without giving others a chance to respond
- Having facial expressions, movements, and gestures that do not match what is being said
- Having an unusual tone of voice that may sound sing-song or flat and robot-like
- Having trouble understanding another persons point of view or being unable to predict or understand other peoples actions
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Is Rett Syndrome Autism
Rett syndrome or Rett disorder has also been called autism-dementia-ataxia-loss of purposeful hand use syndrome.
But its not included on the autism spectrum. Its a brain disorder caused by genetic mutations.
Classic Rett syndrome usually affects girls who display typical development for the first few months. Then, symptoms start to appear, involving issues with:
- language and communication
If you think your child might have symptoms of autism, speak with their pediatrician or a primary care physician. They can refer you to the appropriate specialist, such as a:
- developmental pediatrician
- psychiatrist or psychologist
You can also request an evaluation from your states public early childhood assistance center. Its free, and you dont need a doctors referral or diagnosis. Your local public school district can also provide assistance.
Theres no one medical test to diagnose autism spectrum disorder. A doctor can make the diagnosis with a comprehensive behavior evaluation and developmental screening.
Some people on the spectrum need minimal support services. Others require a lot. Either way, early intervention is associated with long-term positive effects.
What Is Autism Spectrum Disorder Previously Called Autism And Pervasive Developmental Disorders
Autism spectrum disorder is a neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by the following:
- Difficulties in social communication differences, including verbal and nonverbal communication.
- Deficits in social interactions.
- Restricted, repetitive patterns of behavior, interests or activities and sensory problems
Many of those with ASD can have delayed or absence of language development, intellectual disabilities, poor motor coordination and attention weaknesses.
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What Are The Symptoms Of Autism
The most obvious symptoms tend to involve communication and interaction with others.
Autistic people may have different ways of learning, thinking, and problem-solving. Intellectually, autistic people can fall on a range from severely challenged to gifted.
Everybody is different. Some people will have many symptoms, and some will have only a few. Signs of autism in a 3-year-old or 4-year-old may look different from those who are teens or adults. Some autistic people may be able to mask their symptoms.
General signs of autism may include:
- not responding to their name
- avoiding eye contact or not showing an awareness when others are speaking
- not understanding sharing or taking turns
- not looking at objects shown to them
- not pointing or responding to pointing
- having difficulty understanding facial expressions
In older children and adults, you might also notice:
- having difficulty reading body language, facial expressions, and other social cues
- not getting sarcasm, teasing, or figures of speech
- speaking in monotone
Terminology And Distinction From Schizophrenia
As late as the mid-1970s there was little evidence of a genetic role in autism while in 2007 it was believed to be one of the most heritable psychiatric conditions. Although the rise of parent organizations and the destigmatization of childhood ASD have affected how ASD is viewed, parents continue to feel social stigma in situations where their child’s autistic behavior is perceived negatively, and many primary care physicians and medical specialists express some beliefs consistent with outdated autism research.
It took until 1980 for the DSM-III to differentiate autism from childhood schizophrenia. In 1987, the DSM-III-R provided a checklist for diagnosing autism. In May 2013, the DSM-5 was released, updating the classification for pervasive developmental disorders. The grouping of disorders, including PDD-NOS, autism, Asperger syndrome, Rett syndrome, and CDD, has been removed and replaced with the general term of Autism Spectrum Disorders. The two categories that exist are impaired social communication and/or interaction, and restricted and/or repetitive behaviors.
The Internet has helped autistic individuals bypass nonverbal cues and emotional sharing that they find difficult to deal with, and has given them a way to form online communities and work remotely.Societal and cultural aspects of autism have developed: some in the community seek a cure, while others believe that autism is simply another way of being.
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Basic Signs And Symptoms Of Autism
The majority of the symptoms of autism involve difficulties with social interaction and communication. Regardless of the subtype of autism someone has, the basic signs and symptoms are similar.
- Abnormal Facial Expressions
- Cannot Understand Social Cues
- Delayed Speech or Language Skills
- Light, Sound, or Touch Sensitivity
- Monotonous Speech or Tone of Voice
- Narrow or Extreme Interests
- Repetitive Body Movements
- Repetitive Motions with Objects
- Resistance to Change
- Ritualistic Behaviors
- Sleep Disturbances
- Social Withdrawal
What Are The 5 Different Types Of Autism
The different kinds of autism include:
- Level 1 Autism Spectrum Disorder , previously called Aspergers Syndrome
- Rhett Syndrome, although this has been removed from the spectrum
- Childhood Disintegrative Disorder
- Kanners Syndrome or Classic Autistic Disorder and
- Pervasive Developmental Disorder Not Otherwise Specified .
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Restrictive / Repetitive Behaviors May Include:
- Repeating certain behaviors or having unusual behaviors. For example, repeating words or phrases, a behavior called echolalia
- Having a lasting intense interest in certain topics, such as numbers, details, or facts
- Having overly focused interests, such as with moving objects or parts of objects
- Getting upset by slight changes in a routine
- Being more or less sensitive than other people to sensory input, such as light, noise, clothing, or temperature
People with ASD may also experience sleep problems and irritability. Although people with ASD experience many challenges, they may also have many strengths, including:
- Being able to learn things in detail and remember information for long periods of time
- Being strong visual and auditory learners
- Excelling in math, science, music, or art
Levels Of Autism Spectrum Disorder
Currently there are 3 levels of Autism Spectrum Disorder. These levels classify how autism is displayed from person to person. So ASD ranges from mild, moderate to severe. Level 1 is a type of autism that requires minimal supports. Level 2 is moderate, and substantial support, and Level 3 requires intensive support.
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What Is The Difference Between Autism And Autism Spectrum Disorder
The term autism was changed to autism spectrum disorder in 2013 by the American Psychiatric Association. ASD is now an umbrella term that covers the following conditions:
- Autistic disorder.
- Pervasive developmental disorder not otherwise specified .
- Asperger syndrome.
People with ASD have trouble with social interactions and with interpreting and using non-verbal and verbal communication in social contexts. Individuals with ASD may also have the following difficulties:
- Inflexible interests.
- Insistence on sameness in environment or routine.
- Repetitive motor and sensory behaviors, like flapping arms or rocking.
- Increased or decreased reactions to sensory stimuli.
How well someone with ASD can function in day-to-day life depends on the severity of their symptoms. Given that autism varies widely in severity and everyday impairment, the symptoms of some people arent always easily recognized.
Understanding Autism Spectrum Disorders
Autism is not a single disorder, but a spectrum of closely related disorders with a shared core of symptoms. Every individual on the autism spectrum has problems to some degree with social interaction, empathy, communication, and flexible behavior. But the level of disability and the combination of symptoms varies tremendously from person to person. In fact, two kids with the same diagnosis may look very different when it comes to their behaviors and abilities.
If youre a parent dealing with a child on the autism spectrum, you may hear many different terms including high-functioning autism, atypical autism, autism spectrum disorder, and pervasive developmental disorder. These terms can be confusing, not only because there are so many, but because doctors, therapists, and other parents may use them in dissimilar ways.
But no matter what doctors, teachers, and other specialists call the autism spectrum disorder, its your childs unique needs that are truly important. No diagnostic label can tell you exactly what challenges your child will have. Finding treatment that addresses your childs needs, rather than focusing on what to call the problem, is the most helpful thing you can do. You dont need a diagnosis to start getting help for your childs symptoms.
Whats in a name?
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Vaccines Dont Cause Autism
No link has been found between vaccines and autism, despite many scientific studies. Researchers have scrutinized the measles, mumps, and rubella vaccine since a 1998 British report raised concerns. That report has been retracted by the Lancet medical journal for poor science and fraud. Thimerosol, a form of mercury, was removed from childhood vaccines in 2001 as a precaution â though no good evidence ever linked it to autism.
What Are The Signs Of Autism
Once you learn the signs of autism, youll start picking up on some of those subtle signs! And its inevitable that youll want some kind of roadmap or blueprint.
Youll want to know beyond a shadow of a doubt if your child has autism.
Well, thats why Im going to break down the signs by age. Thats a helpful way to provide you with some direction.
Below are some signs that your healthcare provider will look for. Remember, youll still need to consult a professional for a diagnosis. A developmental pediatrician or psychiatrist conducts the assessment necessary to provide the diagnosis.
Recognizing the early signs and getting a diagnosis will give you a crucial jump start. With autism, early detection and intervention are major factors in preparing for success.
Pervasive Developmental Disorder Not Otherwise Specified
This form of autism is generally less severe than others. Children with this type of autism may have experienced delays in benchmarks, such as speaking or walking, and often lag behind other children who are on pace to hit their developmental milestones. Children with PDD-NOS are able to manage the symptoms of this milder form more easily than those who have been diagnosed with the more pervasive forms of autism.
Getting Evaluated For Autism Spectrum Disorder
Parent interview In the first phase of the diagnostic evaluation, you will give your doctor background information about your childs medical, developmental, and behavioral history. If you have been keeping a journal or taking notes on anything thats concerned you, share that information. The doctor will also want to know about your familys medical and mental health history.
Medical exam The medical evaluation includes a general physical, a neurological exam, lab tests, and genetic testing. Your child will undergo this full screening to determine the cause of their developmental problems and to identify any co-existing conditions.
Hearing test Since hearing problems can result in social and language delays, they need to be excluded before an Autism Spectrum Disorder can be diagnosed. Your child will undergo a formal audiological assessment where they are tested for any hearing impairments, as well as any other hearing issues or sound sensitivities that sometimes co-occur with autism.
Observation Developmental specialists will observe your child in a variety of settings to look for unusual behavior associated with the Autism Spectrum Disorder. They may watch your child playing or interacting with other people.
Lead screening Because lead poisoning can cause autistic-like symptoms, the National Center for Environmental Health recommends that all children with developmental delays be screened for lead poisoning.
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The Different Types Of Autism: An Informative Guide
Having a child with autism can be challenging, especially during the first few years of his or her life. You might even be going to different doctors and getting little to no answers.
This can be very frustrating.
If your child has autism or you suspect your child might have it, knowing the different types of autism can be very beneficial. Keep reading to learn more!
Types Of Autism: Aspergers Syndrome
Like classic autistic disorder, those with Asperger syndrome struggle with social interaction and communication. While the types are similar in symptoms, they present less severely. Someone with Aspergers is generally high functioning. They possess normal intelligence and can navigate the world with minimal support. Although speech may be executed in monotone, there is no speech delay. They attempt social interaction, and show a desire to form relationships, but they do so awkwardly.
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The 3 Levels Of Autism Explained
Autism is a diagnosis that often carries a certain connotation. Those who are unfamiliar with the nuances of autism spectrum disorder may assume that all children on the spectrum participate in repetitive behaviors, dont make eye contact, and are largely non-verbal. While these signs can certainly be present, there are many children who fall within the spectrum whose symptoms are far milder and even those whose symptoms are more severe. Its a wide and diverse range of possible complications, and despite what some may think, children within the spectrum do not all fall into neat little categories. For that reason, the classifications of ASD have changed significantly over the years.
Treatment And Development Strategies For The Types Of Autism
Children with less extreme forms of autism, such as Level 1 Autism Spectrum Disorder, can benefit from social skills classes as well as taking part in behavioral modification to help with possible obsessive tendencies. In some cases, an altered diet free of preservatives, gluten, artificial sugars, and food coloring can be beneficial. Since many children with Level 1 ASD are advanced learners, looking into differentiated curriculum to challenge and hold their attention can provide numerous benefits.
Similarly, children diagnosed with PDD-NOS can greatly benefit from strategic changes in nutrition combined with occupational therapy and classes in life-skills development.
Girls with Rett Syndrome often need lifelong care because other symptoms may appear or grow more severe as the child ages. Difficulty breathing, cognitive disabilities, grinding teeth, seizures, and growth delays may all need ongoing treatment options. Physical therapy can help increase mobility and straighten limbs, while occupational therapy may help reduce involuntary movements and promote self care. Finally, speech therapy, diet modification, and certain medications can help control seizures.
Childhood Disintegrative Disorder requires early intervention on the part of doctors and parents via specialized and focused nutrition and speech and occupational therapy. Behavior modification helps children cope with this type of autism.
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Heres What You Should Know About The Different Types Of Autism
We often talk about autism existing on a spectrum, and thats because there are different types of autism, all of which manifest through various degrees of signs, symptoms, behaviors, and long-term outcomes. And, just as important as raising general awareness about autism is, raising awareness about the multiple ways it can appear in children and adults is critical in understanding how to offer the right support.
In its broadest definition, autism is a developmental disorder that impacts an individuals ability to communicate and socialize. Common signs of the disorder included delayed speech or lack of speech, difficulties making eye contact or sustaining social interaction, and preoccupations with certain activities or sensory stimuli. But within this larger definition are five distinct types of autism that together make up the spectrum of the illness. Heres what to know about them.
The 5 Primary Forms of Autism
There are five common forms of autism to be aware of:
Rare Types of Autism
An Insight Into The Various Types Of Autism
Let us now get a deeper insight into each of the following forms of Autism.
As mentioned at the beginning of this article, the various types of autism spectrum disorders present a significant overlap with one another. The following 3 characteristics are carefully evaluated to arrive at the right conclusion:
- Social skills within families coping with Autism and externally
- Autism Communication Skills
For example, it is extremely hard to discriminate between mild PDD and moderate Aspergers symptoms as a patient may demonstrate both characteristics in the autism spectrum quotient.
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The 4 Types Of Autism
Doctors don’t think of an autism diagnosis as a label or a limit. Instead, they use a diagnosis to explain behavior and point to effective treatment. They revise plans often to ensure they use the most accurate words possible.
As a diagnostic term, autism has moved through plenty of revisions. Years ago, several different words were used to describe people with autism. Now, the umbrella term autism spectrum disorder is the only one that officials recognize.
Understanding the formal terminology is a critical part of accessing treatments and benefits for someone with autism. Informally, several other terms could be applied to a person with autism. Knowing those words can enhance your knowledge of the condition.
Level 1 Asd: Requiring Support
Level 1 ASD is the least severe. This could be viewed as mild autism.
People who qualify as having Level 1 ASD may struggle in social situations and have some concerns with restrictive or repetitive behaviors but they only require minimal support to help them function in their day to day activities.
People with Level 1 ASD are likely able to communicate verbally. They may be able to have some relationships. However, they may struggle maintaining a conversation and making and keeping friends may not come easily or naturally to them.
People with Level 1 ASD may prefer to stick to established routines and feel uncomfortable with changes or unexpected events. They may want to do certain things in their own way.