Asperger’s Disorder is similar to Autism in that there are often social delays as well as repetitive and restricted patterns of behavior; however, children who are diagnosed with Asperger’s Disorder do not demonstrate language delays and often have average to above average intelligence.
Childhood Disintegrative Disorder (CDD):
CDD is a condition similar to autism but appears after a period of normal development, usually around the age of 3 or 4 years old. Typically, in children who are diagnosed with CDD, language, engagement and interest in social environment, and self-care abilities are dramatically diminished or lost after a period of normal development. Following the dramatic loss of skills, children diagnosed with CDD resemble children with autism.
Pervasive Development Disorder, Not Otherwise Specified (PDD-NOS):
Children diagnosed with PDD-NOS display significant problems with communication, play and some deficits in social interaction; however, their ability to engage with their environment and socialize is often not severe enough for a diagnosis of autism.
Early intervention is imperative for prognosis of all of these developmental disorders. The earlier autism treatments may begin, the better.
Symptoms of Autism
If your toddler shows any of the following signs, we recommend you contact Equilibria to schedule an evaluation:
- Autism Symptoms Showing By 6 Months: A lack of eye contact (e.g., does not gaze at parent when feeding); a lack of broad smiles or other joyful expressions.
- Autism Symptoms Showing By 9 Months: No “conversational” back-and-forth sharing of sounds, smiles, or other facial expressions.
- Autism Symptoms Showing By 12 Months: A lack of response to name (e.g., doesn’t turn or look up when name is called); No babbling or baby talk; No communicative gestures (e.g., pointing, showing, reaching, or waving).
- Autism Symptoms Showing By 16 Months: No single words.
- Autism Symptoms Showing By 24 Months: No two-word meaningful phrases (not simply imitating or repeating what the child heard), e.g., ‘more milk,’ ‘Mommy up,’ ‘want book.’
In addition, any regression or loss of speech or babbling or social skills at any age are symptoms of autism.
Causes of Autism
While there is no one single cause of autism, there is an overall understanding that autism is caused by an abnormality in brain functioning. Researchers are looking at a variety of causes including genetics, heredity, and medical problems.
Commonality of Autism
According to The Autism Society, 1 percent of the population of children in the U.S., ages 3-17, has an Autism Spectrum Disorder.
Diagnosis of Autism
Our practice values a multidisciplinary approach towards diagnosis of Autistic Spectrum Disorders.