The Autism is a severe neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by social withdrawal, repetitive behaviors and some sort of focal attention in its classic form. Basically, it is an inability to relate to others.
The disorder of the autistic spectrum (ASD) is not as mysterious as it used to be ten or twenty years ago. Now, we have a better understanding of the spectrum, and with that understanding comes empathy and support. Children on the autism spectrum see and process the world differently than children who do not.
They may also have a more difficult time socializing and understanding social cues than other children. Not knowing what autism is, or not knowing how to stop the signs, these children can often end up with an unfair expectation set by their parents, teachers, and their classmates.
Just as the name suggests, autism spectrum disorder exists on a spectrum of different types of behaviors and things that a child can, or may have a more difficult time doing than most, including auditory processing, verbal speaking, and communicating. How can you tell when your child may have autism?
Behaviors that display the autism spectrum
There are some classic signs of autism, and once you get a diagnosis you can help your child better interact with the world in a way that is safe and comfortable for them.
1. Does not respond to interaction
Children who are not on the autism spectrum often begin to interact with parents and the world around them almost immediately. They respond to voices and track movement with their eyes. Babies who have autism, however, may have difficulty interacting and responding to interaction.
A child with autism may not respond to the sound of his parents' voice or words, and may avoid eye contact.
2. Delayed verbalization
Babies begin to babble before they begin to learn to speak. Before they reach the age of one year, most children will begin to make noises with their mouth as a form of communication. Children with autism tend to have a developmental delay when it comes to verbalizing and babbling.
If your child is not achieving the same when it comes to babbling or even talking, as the children around them, they may be considered for the diagnosis with autism.
3. Difficulty socializing
As your children grow from baby to toddler, they may have a difficult time socializing with the other children, or even socializing with their parents. Most children show an interest in interacting with other people. Children with autism will be disinterested, or may find interaction with people, especially strangers, difficult and overwhelming. Autism can affect how children understand socializing. It may not be that they don't want to - they just don't know how to do it.
4. Self-stimulating behavior
This behavior is called “stimming” (self-stimulation or stereotyping), and it is not a bad thing and should not be discouraged as long as the stimming is not self-destructive or harmful to the child or others. Children with autism have trouble verbalizing their feelings in the way that other children might be able to. This results in self-stimulating behavior. A child who is upset and needs to calm down may have to move back and forth.
A child who is happy can express this feeling by waving his hands or waving his arms. Stimming, or self-stimulation, helps a child deal with their emotions at their own pace.
5. Lack of imitation
Most children learn through imitation. Children repeat what their parents say and make the same kinds of gestures that their parents do. They are learning important social skills through this act of imitation. A child with autism, on the other hand, may feel disconnected from their parents or other adults and children. They often do not respond to smiling by mimicking smile, or waving their hand when saying goodbye. Autism affects how they understand and see the world, so they often can't tell that you expect them to wave this way.
6. Identification problems with your name
Around the year, children often recognize his name and respond to him. They will also be able to understand the names of other people in the home, such as Mom and Dad. Children with autism may have a harder time identifying the name with themselves. It can be a sign to be screened for autism if they are not responding to your name by the time they reach one year of age.
7. Disinterest in people
Generally, babies and children will look to adults for what to do. They are interested in the people around them and participate in interacting with them - they babble, pull hair, grab jewelry, respond to sounds and voices. Children with autism show markedly diminished interest in other people. They have little interest in interacting with the people around them, and are often avoiding eye and non-verbal contact.
If you suspect that your child has this disorder, it is best to read and learn all you can about the subject. Your child is as smart and capable as any of the other children - they just need a little more help figuring out how to navigate the world around them. Getting tested is a good plan, in case any of your autism symptoms may also be caused by something else.
Children with autism do not always present the same shape. Autism can present with more behaviors in some than in others. Either way, your child expects love, guidance, and support from you.
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