Autism is a very misunderstood diagnosis and many parents will have fears that their child has indicators of early-on Autistic characteristics. One needs to be very careful before assuming their child has or is developing an Autistic neurodevelopmental.
Here are some signs that Autism may indeed be prevalent. Understand these are simply indicators and does not by any means indicate Autism.
Autism is what is referred to as a spectrum disorder, basically meaning it can range from very mild to very severe and occur. Autism does not segregate between races so it is found regardless of ethnicity. Where it does become selected is in males – males are considered four times more likely to have autism than that of females; Male to female percentage ratio of 75%-25% is a significant factor.
Often, children up to 2 years of age with autism can act and appear to be quite normal and display no strong signs whatsoever and will progressively regress (regressive autism), with an eventual lost of their language and/or social skills.
Early Signs of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD);
- Repeats words or phrases over and over (echolalia)
- Not respond to their name (the child may appear deaf)
- Does not point at objects or things of interest, or demonstrate interest
- Does not play “pretend” games
- Avoids eye contact
- Wants to be alone
- Has difficulty understanding, or showing understanding, or other people’s feelings or their own
- Has no speech or delayed speech
- Give’s unrelated answers to questions
- Gets upset by minor changes
- Has obsessive interests
- Flaps their hands, rock their body, or spin in circles
- Has unusual reactions (over or under-sensitivity) to the way things sound, smell, taste, look, or feel
- Has low to no social skills
- Avoids or resists physical contact
- Demonstrates little safety or danger awareness
- Using reverse pronouns (e.g., says “you” instead of “I”)
- Gives unrelated answers to questions
Children and adults with autism may also:
- Have unusual interests and behaviors
- Have extreme anxiety and phobias, as well as unusual phobias
- Line up their toys or other objects (food)
- Play with toys the same way every time
- Like parts of the objects/toys only (e.g., wheels)
- Become upset and emotional by minor changes
- Have obsessive interestsOther Symptoms:
- Overly agressive
- Causing self injury
- Unusual eating and sleeping habits
- Unusual mood or emotional reactions
- Lack of fear or more fear than expected
- Have unusual sleeping habits
- Hyperactivity (very active)
- Impulsivity (acting without thinking)
- Very short attention span
Upcoming article: Living with Autism – your children and you.