Autism is a complex neurobiological disorder. This developmental disability does not have a clear diagnosis. Types of autism spectrum disorder may be varied. We call it a spectrum type of illness. Most clinicians diagnose autism through signs and symptoms. Most of the time autistic children need main support following three areas in life.
So identifying the areas of an affected child is more important rather than asking what is autism. Through your journey, you will find the answer.
Until recently experts told, there are three types of autism are
- Autistic disorder
- Asperger’s syndrome
- pervasive developmental disorder
Now we call it autism spectrum disorder commonly. Asperger’s syndrome shows a milder end of the autism spectrum.
Main associated areas of autism spectrum disorder
- Planning, structure, and routines
- Social imagination and understanding emotions.
Five Major Diagnosis Of Autism Spectrum disorder
- Autism or Autism spectrum disorder.
- Asperger’s syndrome
- PDD ( Pervasive Developmental Disorder )
- Ratt’s Disorder
- Childhood Disintegrative Disorder
The symptoms of this spectrum type disorder come at the age of 03 and often improve with the availability of effective treatment.
There is no cure for this developmental disorder. But kids can get remarkable improvement like normal.
Early intervention with relevant therapies brings better results
Main affected areas
- Language impairments
- Intellectual abilities
- Coping/adaptive skills
- Social interaction
- Other verbal & nonverbal communication methods
Most of the symptoms show the age of three.
A common form of communication is gestures. Sometimes, autistics may not use gestures at all. Those may be limited and atypical. They lost the most communication skills
Communication Matters of Autism
Language skills are very limited and delayed among these kids
Autistic kids always repeat what they heard before. They try to repeat the whole conversation & very familiar with the TV characters. They can start conversations with familiar people. But can not continue and end the conversation properly.
The child love to speak about the desired topic and try to escape from undesired topics. They can not respond to the questions. As parents/caregivers, you never try to ask open-ended questions using “WH” words like (why, where, what), etc. Also, take additional time to answer a question. If you give them much time to answer, they will give good responses.
They can not imitate others. Play skills are very poor. They are having difficulty following other children.
Normally, if the child is communicating nicely with the surrounding people, though, they are having other symptoms, will not be considered autistic. Also, the kids always tend to fulfill their needs through a third party without speaking a single word, these types are also not to be considered autistics.
Autistics don’t share their experiences and don’t like to make friends.
Social Skills Matters
They don’t have direct eye contact with others, Also have very poor eye contact. Some kids make eye contact only with adults. So, they refuse their peers.
Some category even doesn’t try to make a contact with others
when social interaction happens, they totally took the eye contact away from the subject.
What are social skills?
We do interact with others. so we use a few rules, customs, and abilities to do that interaction effectively. What skills are called social skills. kids pick up social skills the same as they pick language skills. It happens in a natural and easy way. But if your child finds it so difficult, it may be a sign of autism.
Autistics are unable to guess what the “social map” looks like.
Who can teach social skills
So many professionals can teach social skills in different settings. it may be home, school or community. A special education teacher speech therapist or other clinical fellows can lead social skill groups that can combine direct instructions and opportunities to practice the social skills. They can later generalize those skills in the more natural community.
These professionals are as
- Occupational therapist
- School psychologists
- behavioral therapists
- Direct care staff
- Speech therapists
What can social skills groups do?
These groups provide opportunities for kids with autism to practice the skills and provide them with direct opportunities.
Skill groups provide a clear structure and predictability to the members. It can break the abstract social concepts into simple action variables then the members of the group can follow easily.
Skill group language is very simple and groups the children by the level of the language. Always work with pairs or groups within the skill group. Members can obtain varied learning opportunities multiple times. It fosters self-esteem and self-awareness. Finally, the children can function in real-life settings very comfortably by using the experiences in groups.
Facial expressions & Body language
Autistic kids hide their facial expressions at, So it is very difficult to identify their moods, interests, and facial expressions. Some category shows facial expressions, moods, and body language very well. But, those are not related and matched with the true activities gestures, and facial movements.
Most kids can not show good nonverbal communication. Some are starting conversations with hand movements, and some use head, and eye movements. Even if they produce headbanging movements, hand, and upper limb movements, they can not understand other same body expressions.
These kids can’t express their ideas with peers by using gestures and body movements. They always misunderstood other communication patterns. Autistics shows lots of socially inappropriate behaviors. So, they have very limited skills to participate in social events with other social partners.
They can’t show happiness, sadness, anger, frustration, and other emotions. So they always tend to break down social interactions. Also, they don’t start friendships. Most of the time they try to stay alone. The limited play skills are a definite cause of this.
The autistics can’t share what they experience. They attach some objects, things, places, or situations. They don’t want to maintain socio-emotional reciprocity. These kids have a problem maintaining friendships.
When another person becomes upset or is trying to help, that behavior gets the anxious feeling to autistic kids. They don’t know about empathy and sympathy. Autistic kids don’t have an idea of behavior modifications. They have repetitive and fixated behaviors.
What should you do regarding Some of the Stimming behaviors of Autistic children?
These are some of the self-stimulatory behaviors of autistic kids. These are some of the repetitions of movements, sounds, or words. Some times whole stim behavior pattern acts as a stim pattern. The most common stim pattern is jumping.
Don’t stop these stimming patterns unless they are harmful to the children. Allowing stimming to the child gets calm. Gradually, unintentionally occupy a child in productive activity. No harm occurs by stimming to the child. Don’t discourage it unless it’s harmful. By stemming, the child regulates his body. This is a way of communicating joy and happiness.
Common stimming patterns
- Hand flapping
- Rocking back and forth
- waving fingers
- Spin objects
- bite hands & arms
- Repeat noises, words, or phrases
- lining toys or objects
They stick to a certain topic or activity. Some kids communicate about the tiniest details of objects like vehicles. Autistic kids forget activities of daily living, basic mathematics, etc. They have extreme preferences about colors, letters, badges, etc. Those extreme preferences are not essential for social communication.
They like special routines in life. if somebody obstructs these routines, they are getting minor irritations to severe behavioral outbursts. Sometimes they do self-injured behaviors. Autistics are having plus or minus sensory challenges. Those are related to sound,touch,smell,taste,proprioception,joint attention etc.
Some kids are more prone to control other persons
Ex-Need to change mother’s hair ponytail etc.
Some kids are more sensitive to temperature. They needed to be worn with short dresses.
The Criteria for this condition are more similar to autism. Asperger’s kids do not have language delay, cognitive abilities, self-help skills retardation, or adaptive behaviors. But autistic kids have these problems in day-to-day life. Asperger’s children have delays in spoken language in their early years. It becomes normalized up to a big extent with time.
Asperger’s kids have problems with social pragmatics. Their social communication style or pattern seems to be odd. These kids are having problems using the language. They don’t know how to tell a story with jokes and sarcasm. Aspergers kids have problems with social interaction. They don’t have language problems. They like to stay alone. They are having specific topics to talk & they need help to problem solve.
Even though they don’t have a cognitive delay, they are expecting support and situational modifications to function. They don’t have problems in activities of daily living such as feeding, toileting, bathing, etc.
Adults need to prepare a “working structure model ” in school, at home, and in society. Then they can function well. Asperger’s kids need help to do group work, assignments, etc. At home, If you need to give them homework, you need to structure them first.
Parents need to maintain checklists with these kids to do productive work. Also, need to plan community outings well. If parents can do story-based interventions, it will be much more beneficial for these kids.
Frequently occurring diagnoses and conditions with autism
- The most common condition occurs with autism
- It is very difficult to diagnose depression with autism
Parent says autistic kids show
- sad facial expressions
- behavior change
- Loss of interest in activities
- Sleep disturbances
- Mal adaptive behaviors
- Reduced interest in activities of daily living
- The symptoms of depression can be masked by symptoms of ASD.
- When making peers, ASD are having anxiety problems. Anxiety
- problems might extend from childhood to adulthood for some autistic people.
- When autism is present in older children and adolescents, it is more likely to convert into obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) and social phobias.
Anxiety causes various functions. Those functions may be very problematic they should be carefully addressed.
Attention deficit hyperactive disorder (ADHD)
- Impaired focusing ability
- Can not pay attention to school activities.
- Hyperactive behaviors preset together with impulsive behaviors
OBSESSIVE COMPULSIVE DISORDER ( OCD )
- Obsessive thoughts about a particular subject, activity, or object.
- Obsessive thoughts convert into impulsive behaviors. finally results in anxiety.
- Both autism and obsessive-compulsive conditions along with rituals of these children reduce the anxiety
Helping your kid with autism
The future well-being of a child with a developmental disorder like autism depends on the quality of the professional care they receive.
Early intervention with early diagnosis
This is extremely important. if you have any doubt about the diagnosis, try to go to a second opinion to confirm the accuracy of the diagnosis. The doctor may not come up with an exact diagnosis at all
Find the best help For You
A specialist attached to a children’s hospital or major medical center is most suitable and they have all facilities to treat and provide up-to-date care. Because a specialist may be needed to take an accurate diagnosis. and to recommend the treatment.
Listen carefully to your doctor or specialist
This includes the careful following of the instructions of therapists, doctors, and others involved in your child care. If you have questions then ask them, If you need more clarifications ask for for written materials, and diagrams. You have plenty of reliable online resources to help.
Be sure to get the correct advice
Are the professionals paying attention to you? make sure to alert you to confirm whether they are concerning your ideas. The lines of communication between you and your care providers should be very open all the time.
If you feel that something is not correct with your child and you can not clearly define that. then do work and keep trying with your kid. Be persistent in asking questions and seeking solutions
Become an expert
From this method, you can build a good conversation with the care provider professionals for your child. You can make a sound judgment about doctors. therapies and interventions. That will help you to ensure the best treatment as soon as possible. ULTIMATELY YOU WILL FEEL MORE IN CONTROL OF THE SITUATION.
Update and follow the latest treatments and technology
New therapies, new medications, and new technology will help improve the quality of life of your kid with developmental conditions like autism.
Keep a record
Keep all your child’s medical reports, test results, appointments, treatments, medications, doctors, therapists, and so on in a file. ( Ask for a copy of everything.)Emergency numbers and other information about your child’s condition should be included in every home phone, carried by anyone who cares for your child, available caregivers at daycare, etc.
Dealing with an autistic kid is mostly a challenging experience. Don’t blame yourself for your kid’s condition (after all you couldn’t do anything to cause it.) or feel sorry about yourself.
Always make a positive attitude. Though you investigate every avenue when it comes to treatment and management acceptance of what can be changed is important too.
Become financially stable and confident
This complex neurobiological disorder is a very difficult condition to give an exact diagnosis. But the very early stage of treatments results in successful results.
PROVIDING TREATMENTS FOR A CHILD CHILD HAVING MAY CAUSE TO DRAIN YOUR FINANCIAL RESOURCES. Here get the support of your health insurer and other local and federal sources. Because the types of autism spectrum disorder may vary and you may be misled in finding solutions