In the past several weeks, dealing with the suggestion of Autism for Miss Moose, I have done a LOT of research. Fortunately, my child would not benefit from early intervention services and her evaluation went well- the evaluators feel that she is developing normally for a child her age. Despite this, I thought it would be helpful to share some of my information with other parents.
The following are “warning signs” for Austism Spectrum Disorder (ASD):
- Does not babble or coo by 12 months of age
- Does not gesture (point, wave, grasp, etc.) by 12 months of age
- Does not say single words by 16 months of age
- Does not say two-word phrases on his or her own (rather than just repeating what someone says to him or her) by 24 months of age
- Has any loss of any language or social skill at any age.
In addition to this, there are a good deal of red flags that could point to an ASD, or a Pervasive Development Disorder (PDD). These “red flags” are:
- The child does not respond to his/her name.
- The child cannot explain what he/she wants.
- Language skills or speech are delayed.
- The child doesn’t follow directions.
- At times, the child seems to be deaf.
- The child seems to hear sometimes, but not others.
- The child doesn’t point or wave bye-bye.
- The child used to say a few words or babble, but now he/she doesn’t.
- The child throws intense or violent tantrums.
- The child has odd movement patterns.
- The child is hyperactive, uncooperative, or oppositional.
- The child doesn’t know how to play with toys.
- The child doesn’t smile when smiled at.
- The child has poor eye contact.
- The child gets “stuck” on things over and over and can’t move on to other things.
- The child seems to prefer to play alone.
- The child gets things for him/herself only.
- The child is very independent for his/her age.
- The child does things “early” compared to other children.
- The child seems to be in his/her “own world.”
- The child seems to tune people out.
- The child is not interested in other children.
- The child walks on his/her toes.
- The child shows unusual attachments to toys, objects, or schedules (i.e., always holding a string or having to put socks on before pants.)
- Child spends a lot of time lining things up or putting things in a certain order.
Parents, keep in mind that just about every child displays one or more of these “symptoms” at some point in their life. However, if you feel there is something wrong, notice several of these markers, or feel that your child is not developing normally, make an appointment with your child’s pediatrician immediately! Early intervention services, such as speech and developmental therapy, can benefit you and your child.
For more information, visit websites such as http://www.autismweb.com