|Posted on December 6, 2017 at 12:10 AM|
What Is Asperger’s Syndrome?
Also known as Asperger’s Disorder, is a member of the neurodevelopmental disorders that can have an effect on an individual’s behavior, use of language and communication, and the pattern of their social interactions. Symptoms of Asperger’s syndrome are more prominent in the earlier stages of a person’s life but it has also been found to develop in the later years and affect adults in their later stages. Asperger’s disorder was originally categorized as one distinct autism spectrum disorder; however, Asperger’s syndrome was considered to be at the milder/ higher functioning range of the spectrum. In May of 2013, Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) combined Asperger’s disorder and autism into one for diagnostic purposes known as ASD. Many experts think it should be diagnosed as a separate entity to represent a condition related to autism. Those people who were diagnosed with Asperger’s disorder were found to have higher functioning form of autism or an autism related condition. Those who were diagnosed with Asperger’s were found to have high intelligence but poor social interactions and skills. This disorder is more hereditary in which it is found to run in many families and is passed from generation to generation. Asperger’s Disorder is five times more common in boys than it is in girls. The number of autism spectrum disorders has risen drastically in the past years. In fact, 1 out of every 110 US children has an autism spectrum disorder. Out of the total number of children with an autistic disorder, 2 and a half out of every 1000 children has Asperger’s Disorder.
Social behavioral symptoms can appear as early as the infancy stage. Most cases of Asperger’s disorder is identified when the child is school aged; studies have been recorded to show the average diagnosis age of 11 years old.
Some of these social symptoms include:
• Lack of social awareness
• Lack of interest in socializing (making friends)
• Difficulty maintaining friends
• Inability to infer thoughts, feelings, and emotions of others
• Gazing intently, avoids eye contact • Sensitive to noises, odors, touch, and tastes
• Repetitive motor patterns (waving arms)
Another big characteristic of Asperger’s syndrome is the preservative and obsessive interests that an individual can have with this disorder.
• These interests are usually repetitive and intense compared to other child interests.
• These interests remain their focus despite the efforts to redirect the child’s focus.
Language development is generally normal but the use or application of language skills is altered in people with Asperger’s syndrome.
• Speech may be disorganized or not relevant to the conversation
• Changes in voice or speaking
• Difficulties in understanding subtle use of language (irony and sarcasm)
In school children that have Asperger’s syndrome seem to excel in the early grades of their school career. Once they get older this changes, resulting in difficulties in reading comprehension and writing skills. Special education is an option at this point but is not always necessary.