10 signs and symptoms to identify Autism
Autism is characterized by the alteration of the individual's ability to communicate and establish social relationships, and by the existence of repetitive behaviors. This neurological disorder manifests in 1 out of every 100 births .
It is a complex condition that affects the development of the child, is usually diagnosed around 3 years, and there are no differences in their appearance in different cultures or social classes. It is more common in boys than girls. and according to the DSM-V belongs to autistic spectrum disorder (ASD).Related article: "15 films that talk about Autism"
Signs to detect Autism
Each individual with autism experiences the symptoms differently and with different degrees of severity. But nevertheless, The following 10 signs and symptoms are considered as the warning signs of autism in children :
1. Disconnection with others
Children with autism tend to be distant or disconnected with loved ones (parents, siblings, etc.). For example, it may appear that they have no emotional connection to these people and do not understand the difference between facial signals. In other words, children with autism often do not react differently to a frown or a smile from someone else.
The studies carried out regarding this disorder indicate that people with autism can not formulate an explanation to the thought or behavior of others. that is, they present a deficit in the theory of the mind. The theory of the mind refers to the ability to put oneself in the place of the other.
2. The apparent lack of empathy
Another common characteristic of children with autism and that also has to do with the theory of the mind, is that they have difficulties empathizing with others. Although lack of empathy may be difficult to detect and evaluate in infants and young children effectively, there are specific cues that show a lack of empathy.
Autistic children seem to have difficulty understanding or appreciating situations from the perspective of other people. This is because they think that everyone understands the world as they do, which can cause confusion or the inability to foresee or understand the actions of others.
3. They are indifferent to social interactions
The vast majority of children are very sociable in a natural way. However, children with autism do not spend time looking at each other's faces, responding by hearing their name, imitating others' facial expressions, or holding each other's hands during the game. Instead, lchildren with autism often do not seem very interested in participating in normal games and activities of child development , including the socialization and imitation of other people.
These signs begin to manifest at 18 months of age, and as socialization with others continues, the symptoms may be more noticeable. For example, at 3 years of age, normal children often want to play with toys with other children. Autistic children, on the other hand, prefer to play alone .
4. Presence of emotional outbursts
In some cases, children with autism may show disproportionate emotional reactions in apparently normal situations . For example, temper tantrums inappropriate to the context or physically aggressive behavior towards themselves (for example, banging their heads), their parents, siblings or others.
They may seem unable to control their emotions and physical responses, especially when they are in new, strange, or stressful situations. Parents should carefully monitor their children's social responses throughout their development, and be familiar with the important moments and expectations of behavior a child should show when he or she reaches a certain age. Although it is relatively rare, this type of emotional outbursts should be taken into account and a specialist mentioned , because it can help to make a correct diagnosis.
5. Delay in language development
At 2 years of age, Most babies begin to babble or imitate the language of those who interact with them , and uttering a single word when they point to an object or try to get their parents' attention.
However, children with autism do not begin to babble or talk until much later. In fact, some they do not begin to show significant language skills until they start working with a speech therapist .
6. Prone to non-verbal communication
Due to the fact that autistic children do not develop verbal communication skills at the same time as normal children, they may show a propensity for non-verbal communication.
For example, can resort to visual or physical means of communication , such as drawings or gestures to make requests or participate in a round trip dialogue. Another telltale sign of autism is that children may show a setback in their verbal abilities; for example, they may lose vocabulary.
7. Difficulty understanding figurative expressions
Often, children with autism also they have trouble understanding that people sometimes express themselves figuratively . As has been said, they do not obtain any secondary meaning from the attitude or facial expressions, nor do they detect communication signals depending on the tone of voice; For example, they do not distinguish a happy tone of voice from a sad or angry tone of voice.
Another related symptom is that autistic children tend to have more trouble distinguishing between what is real and what is fiction . Interestingly, autistic children can be imaginatively very vivid, and some seem to prefer to dwell in their own imaginary worlds.
8. They show repetitive behavior
Individuals with autism are more likely to show repetitive behavior .
For example, they can organize and reorganize the same group of objects, back and forth for extended periods of time or repeat the same word or phrase obsessively. This is one of the most easily identifiable symptoms.
9. Present Pica
Pica syndrome is associated with autism since 30% of children with this disorder also have Pica .
This behavior is characterized because children ingest substances that are not nutritious, such as dirt, stones, paper or biological substances. Although Pica can also be seen in other children of young age, individuals with autism continue to perform this practice at older ages.
10. Sensitivity to external stimuli
Sensitivity to external stimuli is another early warning sign of autism . For example, autistic individuals may become stressed or agitated when exposed to specific noises, bright lights, smells or particular tastes, and some autistic children may avoid certain colors, clothing, sounds, lights or areas of the house, for no apparent reason.
However, they can also become extremely sensitive to certain stimuli, and they will insist on the use of certain clothing or colors , rooms with bright lights or loud sounds, and enjoy playing or playing with specific parts of the body. Many autistic children also present emotional stress when deprived of their preferred stimuli.