Autism awareness has significantly increased over the years. However, there is no such thing as too much awareness when it comes to developmental disorders. Whether you think your child may be on the Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) or not, it’s important to enrich your knowledge about these conditions. This way, you can better help others that may be going through this situation.
In this blog, we will be exploring what autism is, some of the most common symptoms, and how to deal with the diagnosis.
In essence, people with autism are affected in three different developmental areas. This includes difficulties communicating, impaired social interaction with others, and repetitive or restricted interests and behaviours.
This disorder affects how people interact with and understand the environment they live in. It tends to be something you are born with or develop during the early stages of your life. Rather than being a ‘curable’ condition, autism is something you simply learn to live with. So, what exactly are the most common signs of autism in children?
Some of the most common symptoms include:
1. Less verbal than other children their age
2. Not inclined to make eye contact
3. Repeating gestures and behaviours like rocking their bodies or flicking their hands
4. Getting very upset at small changes or disruptions to their routines
5. Hypersensitivity to certain tastes, smells, lights, and sounds
6. Attachment to unusual interests
7. Lack of impulse control
8. Lack of sensitivity or empathy
This condition is diagnosed on a spectrum, meaning that symptoms can exhibit themselves mildly or in more severe and debilitating ways.
For example, someone with level 1 autism may communicate effectively with others, formulate full sentences, and try to make friends with others, albeit at a reduced social capability. A child with level 3 autism could find it very difficult to communicate verbally, rarely interact with others, and only deal with direct interactions from people they know.
So, what can you do when you are taking care of someone with autism? As we previously noted, autism is a disorder that manifests itself very differently across people. So, there’s no one-size-fits-all solution that you can adopt. However, there are a few guidelines that can help you along the way.
There are countless types of therapy that people with autism can benefit from, including occupational therapy, applied behaviour analysis, Cognitive-Behavioural Therapy, and much more. You can also create a personalised plan with actionbehavior.com.
People with autism disorder can find disruptions in their schedules incredibly upsetting. Therefore, we recommend that you keep their routine as consistent as you can. You can also do this by enforcing regular bedtimes, mealtimes, and more. If you do want to add new tasks, make sure to do this gradually.
Above all, remember to stay calm and patient. Trying to find a routine that works for your family can be stressful and overwhelming. Remember to be kind to yourself and keep on trying different combinations.