Autism and Asperger’s: A guide to your child’s development
11th September 2015
With more than half a million people in the UK living with autism, it really does touch the lives of many. Having a good understanding of the condition and being able to recognise the signs will help you to support your child as best as you can, so they can continue their development into adulthood.
Whether your child has recently been diagnosed with either autism or Asperger’s, or you suspect that they may have the disorder, you will naturally want to learn more about the condition to help you better understand how your child might feel in certain situations they will face day-to-day.
What are the signs and symptoms?
Those who have both autism and Asperger’s experience a delay in the development of basic skills that other children will naturally pick up. These can include: speech, communication and the ability to socialise with others, making many situations extremely difficult and stressful for them.
Here are some common signs and symptoms that may become more noticeable as your child grows older and starts school:
- Speech that is very flat or monotonous sounding
- A tendency to avoid speech altogether
- Lack of awareness of a two-way conversation, and a tendency to talk at people
- Struggle to understand sarcasm or figures of speech, and tend to take what people say literally
- Can react negatively when asked to do something by someone
- Avoid making eye contact
- Intolerant of people entering their personal space but equally they’re not aware of other people’s personal space
- Struggle to change their tone of speech in different social situations and with different people, e.g. may be very friendly with strangers but speak formally with close friends and family
- Little interest in forming friendships
- Repetitive movements e.g. rocking, tapping, flapping their fingers etc.
- Prefer to play with objects rather than people, and also play in a repetitive way.
- Have a specific interest in one subject/activity that can be rather obsessive
- Prefer to have the predictability of a routine and become unsettled and upset if this changes in anyway
- Strong likes/dislikes for foods based on things like colour and texture, as well as taste
The spectrum of autism
Autism is a lifelong developmental disability and is known as a spectrum condition. This means that although people with the condition share similar difficulties, the extent to each child’s condition can vary quite considerably. A typical example of this is how Asperger’s syndrome is a strand of autism; so where some people with autism are able to live fully independent lives, others may need specialist support to enable them to carry out simple day-to-day activities.
Supporting your child
Every child is different, so no one approach is the right one for every child with autism or Asperger’s to adhere to.
If you suspect that your child may have either autism or Asperger’s, then you do not need to wait for an official diagnosis in order to seek help. With the help of your GP, you can contact health care professionals such as speech therapists, behavioural therapists and psychologists.
who can work with you and your child to help their development, if you have concerns. Likewise, you can arrange a meeting with your child’s teacher to discuss any concerns or to help them understand your child’s development issues so they can be prepared for any unexpected behavioural tendencies.
If you’re looking for excellent day care for your child, then Tiny World in Nottingham and Mansfield are here to help. We welcome all children, ages 6 weeks to 11 years, and our qualified staff are highly experienced to offer the best childcare, supporting your child’s needs, whatever they may. To speak to one of our team, please do not hesitate to get in touch with us today.