Tag Archives: Language Development

Question?: Pdd Nos Symptoms

William asks…

What are the symptoms of autism in children under two?

admin answers:

Appears indifferent to surroundings
Appears content to be alone, happier to play alone
Displays lack of interest in toys
Displays lack of response to others
Does not point out objects of interest to others (called protodeclarative pointing)
Marked reduction or increase in activity level
Resists cuddling

Young children with autism usually have impaired language development. They often have difficulty expressing needs (i.e., use gestures instead of words) and may laugh, cry, or show distress for unknown reasons. Some autistic patients develop rudimentary language skills that do not serve as an effective form of communication. They may develop abnormal patterns of speech that lack intonation and expression and may repeat words or phrases repetitively (called echolalia). Some children with autism learn to read.

Autistic children do not express interest in other people and often prefer to be alone. They may resist changes in their routine, repeat actions (e.g., turn in circles, flap their arms) over and over, and engage in self-injurious behavior (e.g., bite or scratch themselves, bang their head).

Other symptoms in young children include:
Avoids cuddling or touching
Frequent behavioral outbursts, tantrums
Inappropriate attachments to objects
Maintains little or no eye contact
Over- or undersensitivity to pain, no fear of danger
Sustained abnormal play
Uneven motor skills
Unresponsiveness to normal teaching methods and verbal clues (may appear to be deaf despite normal hearing)

Research has shown that autism occurs more often in first born children and males. My daughter (first born) was an incredibly easy, cuddly baby, but definitely displayed language/communication delays. Her diagnosis is Pervasive Developmental Disorder – Not Otherwise Specified (PDD-NOS).

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Question?: Autism Signs In Infants

Michael asks…

What to expect at speech pathologist evaluation with 9-month-old?

My son is 9-month-old and he is not babbling (at all). We’ve been signing with him and he’s never signed back, either. He also has problems swallowing thin liquids, but he can drink his bottle because we thicken it with rice cereal. The pediatrician wants us to get an evaluation with a speech pathologist to check language and swallowing. What can we expect? What kinds of tests will she perform? What sort of therapy is possible for this age? Besides reading, signing, and talking as much as possible (which we’ve always done), what else can we do to speed language development?

admin answers:

At 9 months most of the evaluations will consist of the therapist looking at the physical structure of his mouth, teeth, gums, tongue, etc, observing him as he plays, and asking you lot of questions.

As he is not babbling at all you may need to take him to an audiologist who works with infants to have a specific type of hearing screening done. It consists of them measuring what sound is reaching your son’s brain. (I am just assuming that you haven’t already had this done.)

If it turns out that your son is deaf or has autism or is just severely delayed, than getting that diagnosis this early is crucial because it will allow for very intensive therapy for him while his brain is still very plastic.

I am not sure what therpy would look like for a 9 month old child but I imagine it will be a more intensive and targeted version of what you are already doing-talking, singing, reading and interacting as much as possible with your child. The therapist will probably spend a lot of time teaching you what to do for your child at home.

I wish you the best of luck with your child. Although I don’t work with infants, I do teahc special education and have 4 years of experiance with preschool children who are delayed. Please dont’ hesitate to e-mail me if you have any more questions.

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Question?: Asperger Syndrome Quiz

Joseph asks…

How do i know if i have Semantic Pragmatic Disorder or Asbergers?

or autism if i do how can i cure it or treat it can a get any prescription

admin answers:

Quiz: http://www.rdos.net/eng/ ~~~

The term ‘semantic pragmatic disorder’ has been around for nearly l5 years. Originally it was only used to describe children who were not autistic.

Features it includes are:-

delayed language development
learning to talk by memorising phrases, instead of putting words together freely
repeating phrases out of context, especially snippets remembered from television programmes
muddling up ‘I’ and ‘you’
problems with understanding questions, particularly questions involving ‘how’ and ‘why’
difficulty following conversations
Children with this disorder have problems understanding the meaning of what other people say, and they do not understand how to use speech appropriately themselves.

Soon both research and practical experience yielded two important findings:

Many people who definitely are autistic have this kind of language disorder (Dustin Hoffman’s character Raymond in the film ‘Rainman’ being a typical example).
Most of the children diagnosed as having semantic pragmatic disorder do also have some mild autistic features. For example, they usually have difficulty understanding social situations and expectations, they like to stick fairly rigidly to routines, and they lack imaginative play.
For a while some language therapists maintained there was still an important difference between children with semantic pragmatic disorder and children who were truly autistic. They believed the autistic features seen in children with semantic pragmatic disorder were only a result of their difficulty with language.

However, further research has shown that there is probably a single underlying cognitive impairment which produces both the autistic features and the semantic pragmatic disorder . The fact that children with semantic pragmatic disorder have problems understanding the meaning and significance of events, as well the meaning and significance of speech, seems to bear this out.

Eventually the idea of an autistic continuum was used to explain the situation. All the children on the continuum have semantic pragmatic difficulties, but the degree of their other autistic impairments can be severe or moderate or mild. This parallels the autistic continuum relating Asperger syndrome, where all the children have a marked social impairment but those with Asperger syndrome have only a relatively mild and subtle language impairment.

It seems that children who are diagnosed as having a semantic pragmatic disorder might more accurately be described as high-functioning autistic. Clinicians tend to give all autistic children who have good intelligence the label Asperger syndrome, even if a child actually has very limited speech. But there are important differences between bright autistic children with semantic pragmatic difficulties and bright autistic children with Asperger syndrome. Children with semantic pragmatic difficulties have usually learnt to talk late, whereas (according to diagnostic guidelines) children with Asperger syndrome were able to talk in sentences by the age of three. Also children with semantic pragmatic difficulties do better on performance IQ tests than verbal IQ tests, whereas with children with Asperger syndrome the results tend to be the other way round. However, if a child with semantic pragmatic difficulties eventually becomes a fluent talker, the difference between the labels ‘high functioning autistic’ and ‘ Asperger syndrome’ becomes fairly academic.

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Question?: Autism Signs In Infants

Chris asks…

what is the difference between aspergers and high functioning autism?

i have aspergers and i was wondering whats the difference between aspergers and high functioning autism?

bq: is aspergers considered a rara disorder?
i meant rare disorder

admin answers:

Both Asperger Syndrome & High Functioning Autism are pretty similar in terms of the traits and features that are present, but the clear main difference is that individuals with HFA had a significant delay in their language development, whereas on the other hand people with Asperger’s Syndrome usually do not, many individuals with AS will have developed speech from aged 2 onwards, although some actually begin to speak even before a developmentally typical infant, and most of them will meet some or full criteria for a Non-Verbal Learning Disorder.

According to my childhood developmental history, I had a mild speech delay as I didn’t acquire language until I just turned 2 years old, it was echolalic and this completely diminished a few months before I was aged 4 years, therefore some young children with AS like myself at the time may receive a diagnosis of a speech & language disorder.

Those with “High Functioning Autism” generally develop their first words from the age of 4 or 5 years old, which is classified as “clinically significant language delay”, likewise most may have displayed temporary signs of Classical (Severe) Autism in early childhood, HFA is far less common than AS.

“Smart Kat’s” statement of Temple Grandin being a “High Functioning Autistic” rather than someone with AS is absolutely correct, as she indeed had clinically significant delays” in acquiring language in childhood.

Some scientific studies state that in terms of intellectual abilities; individuals with AS generally demonstrate Verbal IQ’s (VIQ) significantly greater than their Performance IQ (PIQ), this is typically the reverse in HFA, but this is not always true as it’s clearly possible for the opposite pattern to occur, for instance someone with AS can have a significantly higher PIQ than their VIQ, likewise a High Functioning Autistic can demonstrate far more verbal abilities than their performance ones.

Other than these statistics there is no there is hardly any guarantee on how both of these conditions can be distinct from each other.

The prevalence of Asperger Syndrome like Cicely said is approximately 1 in 250.

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Autism. Did you know?


Many of us have heard of people who appear to live in their own world, with unusual sensory interests such as sniffing objects or staring intently at moving things. We may be familiar with stories of individuals who are very good at mathematics, such as Einstein, or have other specific heightened abilities. The same people can be extremely sensitive to sensory input, causing them to avoid everyday sounds from hair dryers or other motorized machines, and certain sensations like the texture of sand. They even have intellectual impairments or learning difficulties. The term “autism” is commonly used to describe these people. In fact, Autism Spectrum Disorder includes classic autism, Asperger Syndrome and Pervasive Developmental Disorders. Each person with one of these disorders is unique and needs specific treatment. The common element among these disorders is developmental disabilities that may make these individuals have a strongly reduced capacity for social interaction, emotional reciprocity or communication and display stereotypical behaviour. The effects of an Autism Spectrum Disorder can often be minimised by early diagnosis, and with the right interventions, many children and adults with an ASD show marked improvements. Many children with autism go to school and continue on to university, work and raising a family.

Symptoms ASD

Even though people with ASD differ, they generally share three main difficulties:

1. Severe delay in social interaction, including some of the bellow –

Limited use of non-verbal communication such as eye contact, facial expressions gestures and postures.Difficulties forming and sustaining relationships due to a lack of empathy (understanding and being aware of the feelings of others).Lack of spontaneity and difficulties sharing enjoyment, interest and activities with other people.Difficulties with social and emotional responsiveness; dislike of cuddling or being touched.

2. Severe slowdown in language development and communication that occurs with:

Delayed language developmentDifficulties initiating and sustaining conversationStereotyped and repetitive use of language, i.e., repeating phrases, echolaliaLimited imagination or spontaneity characterized by a lack of make-believe play or role-play

3. Restricted, repetitive and stereotyped interests and activities, such as:

Unusually intense or focused interestsStereotyped and repetitive body movements like hand flapping and spinning obsessionsRepetitive use of objects like flicking a doll’s eyes or lining up toysAdherence to non-functional routines such as insisting on travelling the same route home each day

Diagnosis of Autistic Spectrum Disorders

To diagnose ASDs professionals administer standardised tests or questionnaires and family interviews, normally in early childhood. Families usually visit paediatric physicians when their children are infants for routine examinations. Certain behaviour may prompt doctors to perform examinations for ASDs. The important thing is that professionals work with parents in order to make a correct and timely diagnosis. Professionals should support parents so they do not feel guilty or hopeless. They must also care for the children by providing appropriate treatment to help them improve. People with ASD can have different symptoms and display very different characteristics. Early diagnosis is made by paediatricians who screen children (usually 18 months to 3 years of age), checking their developmental abilities for their age, like eye contact, language skills, gesturing, posturing, and for the presence of ritualistic behaviour/stereotypy, etc.

Autism can exist on its own or in combination with other developmental disorders like mental retardation, learning disabilities, epilepsy, deafness, blindness, etc. Cases range in a continuous spectrum from mild to more severe.

What causes ASD?

Currently, there is no single known cause for ASD, however recent research has identified strong genetic links. Other studies suggest a neurological problem that affects those parts of the brain that process language and sensory information. There may be a specific chemical imbalance of certain substances in the brain. Some genes are suspected to have links to ASD. Autism may in fact result from a combination of various causes.

Did you know…?

Autism is one of the major developmental disorders, occurring 1-2 times in every thousand children born.Autism occurs worldwide in all races, nationalities and social classes. Four out of five people with autism are male.A person with autism feels love, happiness, sadness and pain just like everyone else, but some may not express their feelings in typical ways.With early diagnosis and treatment there are always improvements that can assist individuals with autism in having jobs and families.They may have “special abilities” in music, maths, etc.

Is there any cure?

Early diagnosis that leads to early intervention can help. Every individual with ASD will make progress, although each individual’s progress will be different depending on a number of factors like developmental factors, the child’s present level of functioning and capabilities, and the type of intervention. The aim of treatment is to achieve a good quality of life and to help families identify and participate in treatment programs based on an individual child’s needs. ABA (applied behaviour analysis) and experimental behaviour analysis focus on individualized education programs including teaching social and motor skills, speech, personal care and job skills. Some common characteristics of these interventions are a 1:1 therapist-child ratio, parent counselling and education with home intervention programs, supervised school integration and social inclusion, which are useful in reducing or eliminating maladaptive behaviours. Medication is also helpful in treating some symptoms of autism or other coexistent disorders in some children.


American Psychiatric Association. (2000). Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (Revised 4th ed.). Washington, DC: Author.

Cohen, D., Donnellan, A., Rhea, P. (1987). In (eds): Handbook of Autism and Pervasive Developmental Disorders. New York, Wiley.

Kaplan, H.I., & Sadock, B.J., Grebb, J.A (1994). In (eds): Kaplan & Sadock’s Synopsis of Psychiatry. 7th ed. Baltimore, MD: Williams & Wilkins, pp 1016-1154.

Rutter, M. Taylor, E., Hersov, L. (1994). Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, Blackwell, Scientific Publications (3d ed). Oxford: England.

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Aspergers in Toddlers

Asperger Syndrome (AS), also called Asperger’s, is a disorder in the autism spectrum disorder (ASD) range. It is characterized by repetitive and restrictive patterns of interests and behaviors, and difficulties in social interaction. It is not as severe as some of the other ASDs because cognitive and linguistic development does not tend to be impacted. There are several generalized symptoms of the disorder, particularly clumsiness, atypical use of language, limited empathy, and limited or no nonverbal communication skills. The disorder is named after the Austrian pediatrician, Hans Asperger, who first noticed these symptoms in children in his practice in 1944. Today, with the knowledge modern medicine has regarding neurology and symptoms, Aspergers in toddlers may be diagnosed much sooner than in previous decades.

No one knows the exact cause of Asperger’s, although there is a suspected genetic basis. Most people diagnosed with the disorder improve as they mature, and although there is no one treatment or cure, people with the syndrome can manage the worst of their symptoms with behavioral therapy. Some people with AS deal with social and communication problems their whole lives.

The symptoms of Aspergers in toddlers are usually present, although the diagnosis is usually not made until the child reaches seven or nine years of age. Early warning signs may allow a diagnosis to be made much sooner, which would benefit a child who may receive therapy to help with the worst of the symptoms. Some kids with Asperger’s fail to attain milestones like crawling, waving, other simple gestures, and unassisted standing within the first year. These kids may also fail to make eye contact, show an aversion to affection, and may prefer being alone. Repetitive behaviors may also appear in the first year or two, like rocking.

Other symptoms of Aspergers in toddlers include abnormal non-verbal communication, lack of social skills, advanced language development, poor coordination – clumsiness, reflex abnormalities, delayed concept of joint attention, delayed use of gestures, delayed pointing, preoccupation with certain topics or items, early reading, sensitivity to stimuli, and obsession with complex topics.

Children with an autism spectrum disorder like Aspergers may begin to develop verbal communication or social skills, but then start to lose those skills around age three. The sooner an autistic or Asperger’s Syndrome child is diagnosed, the sooner behavioral therapy can begin. Early treatment can sometimes lessen the severity of the disorder and help the child to be more able to get along in life. Speak to your doctor if you feel your child may have Aspergers disorder.

Register for your FREE webinar training now and discover the key to unlocking childhood Autism and Aspergers syndrome.

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Symptoms of High-Functioning Autism

My first recollection of autism is connected to watching the ‘Rainman’ movie and thinking about what happened to that brilliant child on the screen. On one hand, so talented on the other so restricted. My next close encounter with the disorder took place when my daughter became a teacher for disabled kids ages seven through ten. I still remember that night when she came back home from school, I looked at her face and knew something tragic must have happen. She shared with me her experience with one of her students diagnosed with autism. Now she brings home the knowledge and awareness that I would not have otherwise. As with all critical occurrences, there is no one single description of the disorder or the cure of it.

Autism is in fact the core condition of a spectrum of disorders, which all share common characteristics and are demonstrated in very diverse ways within each individual.

Autism is a major disability, affecting communication and interaction with other people, but also with the world.

The degree of autism varies from severe to mild, but the consequence is always serious. Accordingly, someone with autism may have severe autism with severe additional learning difficulties, while others may have mild degrees of autism with normal or high levels of intelligence. The majority of those affected by autism have learning disabilities. Their language development varies greatly. Some may have very good speech, although lacking full comprehension, while a significant portion of those with autism will have no spoken language. Many may be hypersensitive to noise, light, touch or smell, and under-react to pain.

The particular causes of autism are not known; we do know however that it is a biologically based disorder affecting the brain development. The patterns of disorderly behavior do not emerge until the child is between 18 months and 3 years old. At times there is a period of seemingly normal development and then, between 18 months and 3 years, the child gives the impression to withdraw and lose skills. We do know that parents are not to blame for autism, but, actually, are the child’s greatest resource.

As for the common signs of autism – those are social, communication and behavior. Autism is displayed in social settings, verbal communication, nonverbal communication, development of imagination and resistance to change of a routine.

Here are examples of such behaviors. Affected kid shows indifference; he or she joins activities with others only if adult insists and assists. The interactions in social settings are one sided. He or she indicates need by using an adult’s hand, does not play with other children, talks consistently only about one topic, displays bizarre behavior. Very common is echolalia, when the child copies words. Laughing or giggling comes up in the most inappropriate times. There is no eye contact, variety is not spice of life, and there is lack of creative (pretend) play.

Some of the affected kids can do some things very well and very quickly, but those never involve social interaction. Early diagnosis of such condition is crucial in order to minimize the problems and maximize the full potential of the person.

I cannot tell if the explosion of autism since 1980 has been triggered by our ability to diagnose or by the actual changes in the fetus and baby development caused by the overdose of chemicals. I know though, that we managed to register 77,000 artificial food additives since 1940 and that an average American consumes 14 pounds of chemicals with their food per year. The results of these statistics cannot be ignored by our bodies. Simple reality check: if you would not put something into your fish tank, don’t stick it in your body.

Maybe it will not happen to eliminate autism, but it will definitely help our health and the world.

In the mean time I would like to invite you to gain more information about the early detection of the disorder and ways to gain control of the situation.

Be am amazed with the value of experience that comes from a simple heart to heart conversation. Yes, when the words are missing, hearts talk. Breathe in the magnificence of life and breathe out the passion for love so others can be poisoned with it. http://lifelonghomebiz.com/

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Exams Tests and Places to Get Help For Those With Asperger’s Syndrome

Exams Tests and Places to Get Help For Those With Asperger’s Syndrome

The doctor will take a medical history and ask questions regarding the child’s development including his or her motor development, language development, and any special interests that the child has expressed.

Making the diagnosis of Asperger’s Syndrome is difficult and takes the input of doctors, teachers, parents and other caregivers in order to make the diagnosis. There are specific criteria that need to be met in order to make the diagnosis of Asperger’s Syndrome including poor social interaction, unusual behavior, obsessive interests, and activities, normal language development, and normal self-help skills and curiosity about the surrounding environment.

The doctor will take a medical history and ask questions regarding the child’s development including his or her motor development, language development, and any special interests that the child has expressed. Social interactions will be noted and a history of the pregnancy and any family medical history or medical conditions will also be ascertained.

Exams and tests will be performed to help determine if Asperger’s syndrome is the correct diagnosis for your child.

Testing will probably include a Psychological Assessment, a communication assessment, and a psychiatric examination. The psychological assessment will look at intellectual function, learning style and intelligence quotient (IQ) as well as an assessment of motor skills. Personality assessment tests may also be performed. The communication assessment involves speech and formal language evaluations where the child will be tested to see how well they understand the use of language and how to communicate ideas. The child will also be tested regarding the ability to understand non-verbal communication and nonliteral language skills, such as humor or metaphor. The child’s voice regarding volume, stress, and pitch will be evaluated.

The psychiatric examination will include the child’s family, peer relationships, reactions to new encounters and the ability to understand and respond to the feelings of others, and also the ability to interpret indirect communication such as sarcasm or teasing. Your child may be observed at home and at school. Signs of conditions such as anxiety and depression will be watched for during observations. Medical personnel will be looking for signs of compliance with the criteria set for Asperger’s Syndrome in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, which is a publication of the American Psychiatric Association and used to be a standard for diagnosing Asperger’s Syndrome and other Mental Disorders.

Many times a child is misdiagnosed with other conditions prior to be correctly diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome. Like most diseases and conditions it is often necessary to rule out other conditions and disorders when making a determination of a diagnosis. It is often a team effort that involves doctors, parents, teachers, psychiatrists, and others who have observed the behavior and communicative abilities of the child.

Places to get help for those with Asperger’s Syndrome:

There are many resources available to gather information concerning Asperger’s Syndrome online and offline.

Online you can find information by going to Aspergerinfo.com or to the Online Asperger Syndrome Information and Support Website located at:


Other organizations that can give support and information about Asperger’s Syndrome are:

Global and Regional Asperger Syndrome Partnership located in New York, USA and also online at:


Families of Adults Afflicted with Asperger’s Syndrome (FAAAS) located in Centerville, MA USA and on the Web at:


MAAP Services for Autism and Asperger Syndrome located in Crown Point Indiana and on the Web at:


Tagged as: Exams Tests and Places  Asperger’s Syndrome

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