If you’re wondering whether your child may have Autism spectrum disorder (ASD), you may be looking for characteristics of ASD. Here are some common signs and symptoms of ASD.
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Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a complex developmental disability that can cause significant social, communication, and behavioral challenges. There is no single cause for ASD, but it is believed to be caused by a combination of genetic and environmental factors.
There are three types of ASD: autistic disorder, Asperger’s disorder, and Pervasive Developmental Disorder-Not Otherwise Specified (PDD-NOS). Autistic disorder, also known as “classic autism,” is the most severe form of ASD. Asperger’s disorder is a less severe form of ASD and is characterized by good language skills and above-average intelligence. PDD-NOS is the mildest form of ASD and is characterized by social and communication skills that are below average but not as severely impaired as in autistic disorder or Asperger’s disorder.
ASD affects males four times more frequently than females. It occurs in all ethnicities and across all socioeconomic levels. It is estimated that 1 in 68 children has ASD.
There are many symptoms associated with ASD. Some children with ASD may have all of the symptoms while others may have only a few. The severity of symptoms can vary greatly from one child to another. The following are some common symptoms:
· Problems with social interaction
· Problems with verbal and nonverbal communication
· Repetitive behaviors or narrow interests
What is Autism Spectrum Disorder?
Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a complex developmental disorder that affects a person’s ability to communicate and interact with others. ASD is characterized by social-interaction difficulties, communication challenges, and restricted, repetitive patterns of behavior, interests, or activities. While there is no single cause for ASD, research suggests that it is caused by a combination of genetic and environmental factors.
ASD occurs in all racial, ethnic, and socioeconomic groups and is about four times more common among boys than girls. The prevalence of ASD has increased over the last few decades, but it is not clear why this is happening. Some experts believe that this increase may be partially due to improved awareness and diagnosis of ASD.
There is no medical test to diagnose ASD. Instead, doctors look at a child’s behavior and development to make a diagnosis. To be diagnosed with ASD, a child must meet certain criteria in two major areas: social communication/interaction and restricted/repetitive behaviors.
Children with ASD might:
– Not respond to their name by 12 months of age
– Avoid eye contact
– Prefer not to be held or cuddled
– Appear unaware when others are upset or hurt
– Use few or no gestures (e.g., pointing or waving bye-bye) by 12 months of age
– Not Play “pretend” games (e.g., feeding a doll) by 18 months of age – Repeat words or phrases over and over again – Give unrelated answers to questions – Get upset by minor changes in routines or surroundings – Have obsessive interests – Flap their hands, spin in circlesor engage in other self-stimulatory behaviors`
Characteristics of Autism Spectrum Disorder
There is no one single symptom or sign that can indicate that a child has Autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Instead, people with ASD tend to have difficulty with social interaction and communication, as well as restricted and repetitive interests and behaviors.
Some common symptoms of ASD include:
* Problems with social interaction, such as not responds to their name being called or not making eye contact with others
* Difficulty with verbal and nonverbal communication, such as not being able to start or carry on a conversation, or using repetitive language
* Restricted interests and repetitive behaviors, such as fixated on certain topics, engaging in repetitive body movements or having unusual routines or rituals
ASD can range in severity from very mild to very severe. Some people with ASD are able to live relatively independent lives while others may require much more support. There is no cure for ASD but there are treatments available that can help improve symptoms and enable people to live fulfilling lives.
Early Signs of Autism Spectrum Disorder
There is no one symptom that is indicative of autism spectrum disorder (ASD), but there are certain behaviors that may be early signs of the condition. These include:
-Delayed speech and language skills
-Problems making eye contact or engaging in joint attention (i.e., sharing a focus of attention with another person, such as looking at an object that someone is pointing to)
-Difficulty understanding or responding to other people’s emotions
-Failure to develop appropriate peer relationships
-Preoccupation with restricted interests and repetitive behaviors
If you notice any of these behaviors in your child, it’s important to talk to your pediatrician. ASD is a complex condition, and there is no one cause. early intervention is key to helping children with ASD develop the skills they need to function as independently as possible.
Diagnosing Autism Spectrum Disorder
There is no single medical, genetic, or neurological test for diagnosing autism spectrum disorder (ASD), although researchers are actively searching for more objective biomarkers. Currently, ASD can only be diagnosed by observing behaviors and is best done by a team of professionals with expertise in autism.
ASD affects each person differently and symptoms can range from very mild to very severe. Because of this wide range of symptoms, it can be difficult to identify ASD in early childhood. Some children with ASD show signs of developmental problems early on, while others seem to develop normally at first but then suddenly “regress” or lose social and language skills they had previously gained.
The most common early red flags for ASD include:
– Not pointing or showing things to share interest with other people by 12 months of age
– Not babbling or using gestures like waving bye-bye by 12 months of age
– Not saying single words by 16 months of age
– Not saying two-word phrases on his own (not just echolalia) by 24 months of age
– Any loss of any language or social skills at any age
Treatments for Autism Spectrum Disorder
There is no known cure for autism spectrum disorder (ASD), but there are treatments that can help improve the symptoms and make the condition more manageable. Some of the most common ASD treatments include:
-Applied behavior analysis (ABA): ABA is a type of therapy that focuses on improving specific behaviors, such as social skills or communication skills.
-Occupational therapy: Occupational therapy helps children with ASD develop the fine motor skills they need for everyday activities, such as dressing or eating.
-Speech therapy: Speech therapy can help children with ASD improve their communication skills.
-Medication: Medication can be used to treat some of the symptoms associated with ASD, such as anxiety or depression.
Living with Autism Spectrum Disorder
Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a neurological and developmental disorder that affects a person’s ability to communicate and interact with others. ASD can range from very mild to very severe, and is diagnosed in about 1 in 59 children in the United States.
There is no one “type” of ASD, and people with ASD can have a wide range of symptoms and behaviors. Some common symptoms include:
-social situations: difficulty understanding and using nonverbal communication, such as eye contact, facial expressions, and body language; difficulty making and keeping friends; preferring not to be touch by others; appearing not to hear when spoken to directly
-repetitive behaviors: repeating the same words or phrases over and over; having intense interests in specific topics; following rigid routines; playing with toys or objects in unusual ways; having repetitive body movements, such as hand-flapping or spinning
-communication difficulties: delayed speech development or no speech at all; trouble starting or sustaining a conversation; talking about topics that are of little interest to others; having a flat or monotonous voice
People with ASD may also have sensory processing issues, which can cause them to be either overly sensitive or under sensitive to certain stimuli, such as sound, touch, taste, smell, light, or color.
Parenting a Child with Autism Spectrum Disorder
Each child on the autism spectrum has a unique set of symptoms, behaviors, and abilities. Therefore, there is no one-size-fits-all approach to parenting a child with ASD. However, there are some general characteristics that are common among children with ASD. These include:
-Difficulty with social interactions
-Sensory processing issues
-Unusual interests or fixations
Myths and Facts about Autism Spectrum Disorder
ASD is a complex neurobehavioral condition that includes difficulties in social interaction, communication, and repetitive behaviors.
ASD can be mild, moderate, or severe; symptoms and level of impairment can vary greatly.
Most people with ASD need specialized intervention and support throughout their lives. Early diagnosis and treatment can make a big difference.
ASD occurs in all ethnic, racial, and economic groups.
There is no single cause of ASD, but it’s likely a combination of genetic and environmental factors.
ASD is not caused by immunizations or other vaccinations.
There is no medical test to diagnose ASD. Diagnosis is based on observed behavior.
Parents usually notice signs in the first two years of their child’s life.
Some children with ASD show signs of developmental delays before age 1 or 2 years old; others seem to develop normally at first but then suddenly “regress” or lose social skills and language they had already acquired.
Signs that a child may have ASD include:
Based on the information gathered from the research, it seems that children with autism spectrum disorder share some common characteristics. These include difficulty with social interaction and communication, repetitive behaviors, and sensitivities to certain sensory input. However, it is important to note that not all children with ASD will display all of these characteristics. Each child is unique and will exhibit a different set of symptoms. Therefore, it is important to consult with a professional if you suspect that your child may have ASD.
Janice is a Board Certified Behavior Analyst. She graduated from the University of British Columbia with a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and Special Education. She also holds a Master of Science in Applied Behaviour Analysis (ABA) from Queen’s University, Belfast. She has worked with and case managed children and youth with autism and other intellectual and/or developmental disabilities in home and residential setting since 2013.