Identifying autism symptoms in your child

Autism symptoms are divided into 2 main areas of difficulty. As we have already discussed the groups of symptoms common to all children on the Autism Spectrum areSOCIAL COMMUNICATION, and RESTRICTED, REPETITIVE PATTERNS OF BEHAVIOURS, INTERESTS AND ACTIVITIES . We will now look at each of these groups of Autism Symptoms in more detail...

I am aware that there are probably 2 categories of parents who are reading this page.

The first category have some concerns about their child's development and are looking for information to work out whether autism may explain their child's difficulties.

The second category will have recently received a diagnosis of autism, and are working through what this means for their child and family. They are therefore gathering as much information as possible.

Whichever category you fit into it is important to remember that as we go through the Autism Symptoms in detail, not every phrase will describe your child. The descriptions cover the different ways that each area of difficulty may present in children across the spectrum. Therefore expect to see 1 or 2 phrases in each category that describe your child.

Social Communication

All three of the following need to be present to get a diagnosis of Autism

1. Many children with Autism have difficulty responding appropriately to your attempts to engage them socially or emotionally. (Eg greet or farewell people, respond as expected to a hug)

2. Children with autism often do not develop non-verbal communication skills such as eye-to-eye gaze, facial expression or gestures to help them understand social interactions as you would expect a child their age to do.

3. Children with autism generally have difficulty starting, keeping and understanding relationships with other children and adults as one would expect for their age.

Therapies that will assist your child to develop communication and social skills include Speech Therapy and JumpStart - holistic therapy for children with Autism.

To find out about Speech Therapy for children with autism - click here. 

To find out about JumpStart - holistic therapy for children with autism - click here.

Restricted, repetitive patterns of behaviours, interests and activities

To get a diagnosis of autism 2 of the following 4 behaviours need to be present

1. Children with autism may perform repetitive body movements eg flapping their hands or flicking their fingers. They often use toys or objects in the same way over and over again. They may repeat phrases they have heard or use words in the wrong context and in a repetitive way.

2. They may have specific rituals or routines that do not serve any functional purpose, but they become distressed if these are interrupted in any way. They may insist on always doing things in the same way and become distressed if you try and do something differently (eg drive a different route to the shops)

3. Children with autism may have a preoccupation with one or more particular items (eg trains) or activities (eg lining items up), and spend extended periods focusing on that particular item or activity.

4. Either difficulty tolerating types of sensory input or the need to constantly obtain more and more sensory input.

JumpStart - holistic therapy for children with autism - actively works on restricted, repetitive patterns of behaviours, interests and activities as part of the holistic program. We also focus strongly on Sensory processing difficulties.

Some Speech therapists and Occupational therapists may work on these specific autism symptoms, particularly if they specialize in working with children with Autism, but you would need to ask them directly as not every therapist will work on these autism symptoms.

To find out about JumpStart - holistic therapy for children with autism - click here. 

To find out about Speech Therapy for children with autism - click here. 

To find out about Occupational Therapy for children with autism - click here 

To return from Autism Symptoms to What is Autism click here

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