The Asperger syndrome part of the autism spectrum disorder, also known as SA, It is characterized by a serious alteration of social interaction and by restrictive and repetitive patterns of behavior, but with conservation of language and cognitive development and autonomy skills, adaptive behaviors and curiosity typical of childhood. It is often considered a form of high functioning autism.
It is a disorder of brain development that was first observed and described by Hans Asperger, an Austrian doctor, whose work was translated to the rest of the world in the 80s.
- 1 Characteristics of the child with Asperger's syndrome
- 2 General symptoms of Asperger syndrome
- 3 Associated disorders
- 4 Prevalence of Asperger's Syndrome
- 5 Course and start
- 6 Family Pattern
- 7 Asperger Syndrome Diagnosis
- 8 Asperger Syndrome Treatment
- 9 Forecast
Characteristics of the child with Asperger's syndrome
The child who suffers from Asperger It has a normal external appearance, He is usually intelligent and has no delay in speech acquisition. However, it presents problems in relating to other children or adults and sometimes they present inappropriate behaviors. In addition, its language is normally only altered when it is used for communicative purposes.
They tend to focus their attention on a specific topic, obsessively many times, so it is not strange that they learn to read by themselves at a very early age, if that is the area of their attention. A child with this syndrome will also be affected, in a variable way, in his connections and social skills, and in behavior with repetitive features and a limited range of interests.
They will present many facts about the subject of their interest, but it seems that there is no point or conclusion. Frequently, they do not recognize that the other person has lost interest in the subject. Areas of interest can be quite limited, such as a obsession with train schedules, phone directories, a vacuum cleaner or collections of objects.
They have a very naive understanding of social situations, and do not usually transform them to their own benefit. The bad adaptation they present in social contexts is the result of a misunderstanding and the confusion created by the demand for interpersonal relationships. Despite their difficulties, children who suffer from this disorder are noble, they have a great heart, a goodness without limits, they are faithful, sincere and have endless values that we can discover with just looking a little inside.
Children with Asperger's syndrome may show delays in motor development and unusual physical behaviors such as:
- Delay in being able to ride a bike, grab a ball or climb a game team.
- Clumsiness when walking or doing other activities.
- Repetitive behaviors in which sometimes they are injured.
- Repetitive flutter with fingers, contortion or movements of the entire body.
General symptoms of Asperger syndrome
People with Asperger syndrome become too concentrated or obsessed with a single object or subject, ignoring all the others. They want to know everything about this topic and often talk little about something else. They don't isolate themselves from the world the way people with autism do. They will often approach other people. However, their problems with speech and language in a social setting often lead to isolation.
- his body language It can be null.
- They may speak in a monotonous tone and may not react to other people's comments or emotions.
- They may not understand sarcasm or humor, or they can take a metaphor literally.
- They do not recognize the need to change the volume of their voice in different scenarios.
- They have problems with eye contact, facial expressions, body postures or gestures (nonverbal communication).
- They can be stigmatized by other children as "weird" or "strangers."
People with Asperger syndrome have trouble forming relationships with children of the same age or other adults, because:
- They are unable to respond emotionally in normal social interactions.
- They are not flexible regarding routines or rituals.
- They have difficulty displaying, bringing or pointing objects of interest to other people.
- They do not express pleasure for the happiness of other people.
The majority of those affected are of normal intelligence, but are usually markedly awkward from the motor point of view.
Asperger Syndrome Prevalence
It is considered that the Asperger syndrome affects 3 to 7 per 1000 children, between 7 and 16 years old. The figures are not accurate, but it is recognized that it is a disorder that affects boys more frequently than girls.
Course and start
Its onset is later than Autistic Disorder or at least recognized later. Motor delays can be observed in the preschool period, and social interaction deficits in the school stage. Apparently the course is continuous throughout life in most cases.
There is a genetic component related to one of the parents. With some frequency it is the father who presents a picture of Asperger's syndrome. Sometimes, there is a clear history of autism in close relatives. The clinical picture presented is influenced by many factors, including the genetic factor, but in most cases there is no single identifiable cause.
Asperger Syndrome Diagnosis
The distinction with Autistic Disorder is established because in Asperger's language development is normal. It differs from Rett disorder due to its sexual pattern, the onset and the pattern of deficits. The discrimination with the Child Disintegrative Disorder It is done by normal language development and adaptive skills. In the Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder The alteration of social interaction is different and the pattern of restrictive and repetitive interests is more pronounced in the Asperger Disorder. The Schizoid Disorder of the Personality presents a minor affectation of the Social Interaction and of the repetitive behaviors and restrictive interests that the Asperge Disorderr.
There is no standardized test (used and accepted by almost everyone) used to diagnose Asperger's syndrome.
Most doctors look for a basic group of behaviors that help them diagnose Asperger's syndrome. These behaviors include:
- Abnormal eye contact
- Don't turn to be called by name
- Inability to use gestures to point or show
- Lack of interactive game
- Lack of interest in classmates
Symptoms may be noticeable in the first months of life. The problems should be obvious towards the age of 3 years.
Physical, emotional and cognitive tests are done to rule out other causes and look for signs of this syndrome with greater care. The team that will see your child includes a psychologist, neurologist, psychiatrist, speech therapist and other experts in the diagnosis of children with Asperger's syndrome.
Asperger Syndrome Treatment
There is no single treatment that is best for all children with Asperger syndrome. Most experts think that the earlier treatment is started, the better.
Programs for children with Asperger syndrome teach skills based on a series of simple steps and using highly structured activities. Important tasks or points are repeated over time to help reinforce certain behaviors.
The types of programs may include:
- Cognitive therapy or psychotherapy to help children manage their emotions, repetitive behaviors and obsessions.
- Training for parents to teach them techniques that can be used at home.
- Physical therapy and occupational therapy to help with motor skills and sensory problems.
- Training in social contacts, which is often taught in a group.
- Speech therapy and speech therapy to help with the ability of everyday conversation.
Medications such as selective reuptake inhibitors of serotonin (SSRI), antipsychotics and stimulants can be used to treat problems such as anxiety, depression and aggression.
With treatment, many children and their families can learn to deal with the problems of Asperger syndrome. Social interaction and personal relationships can still be a problem. However, many adults perform successfully in traditional jobs and can have an independent life, if they have the appropriate type of support available.
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