19 Sep 2010
Initially, the blog’s main mission was to provide tips to help parents and educators handle some autism-related problems. But some readers are asking for more information about symptoms or signs of autism, so I decided to incorporate this subject in my blog. I am leaning toward using the word “signs” rather than “symptoms”, since autism is a condition and is defined as a neurogical developmental disorder rather than a disease. We have the certainty now that autism is a pure genetic condition.
Autism can be diagnosed as early as 18 months old. Usually the mother or the primary caregiver would be the first person to notice any alarming signs. It is always wise to consult with licensed professionals as soon as the doubts arise. Doctors and experienced psychologists have the check lists that serve the purpose. Parents shouldn’t hesitate to check out these lists to take action swiftly. Early intervention has proven to be very effective. The early diagnosis makes the problem less complicated. Don’t be in denial, go check out your child if you suspect that something is wrong with her. The screening tools are accurate and easy to access. Please, talk to professionals and people who share the same problem with you, communication solves half the problem. Whenever there is lack of communication there is a problem. Don’t wait!
There are general signs that cover most conditions of autism. Then there are specific signs for each age group, from early childhood and older that you should watch for.
Here are some of the general signs
The difficulty to communicate with children of the same age
The difficulty to aproach pepole and start or initiate a dialogue with others
The inability to “pretend” or play “make-belief” games/plays
The repetitive and inappropriate use of language, echoing what other people say, “echolalia”
Pronominal reversal, using the pronoun “you” instead of “me” or “I”
Having one or two subjects of interest obsessively and intensiveely focused on
Having fixation on specefic objects
The love for sameness and routines, rigidity
Demonstrating a repetitive behavior