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Asperger Syndrome Can be Overwhelming

Children with Asperger Syndrome have the intelligence to have success in school but they often do not have the emotional strength to cope with the demands of the classroom. These children are easily stressed due to their inflexibility and low self-esteem. They are often very self-critical and unable to tolerate making mistakes. Children with Asperger Syndrome may be prone to depression. Temper outbursts are a common response to stress and frustration. These children rarely seem relaxed and are easily overwhelmed when things are not the way they think they should be. Interacting with people and coping with the ordinary demands of everyday life take continual effort. If you think your child has symptoms of depression, talk with your child and your child’s doctor. 

Let your child know that you’re there whenever he or she needs you. Say this over and over again — your child may need to hear it a lot because he or she feels unworthy of love and attention. Remember, kids who are depressed see the world through “dark lenses” because their experiences are colored by their depression. They might act like they don’t want help or might not even know what they are really experiencing. It’s important to let your child know that you understand what he or she might be going through and that you’re going to seek an expert opinion to find a way to make life easier.

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Classroom Success for High Functioning Autism

 When students with autism are mainstreamed into the regular classroom setting they would be much more sucessful in classes that are their academic strengths, strong interests, and take place in a structured setting. Many high-functioning students with autism have been very successful in school when they are assisted by an individual aide. Again this should be a person who knows about autism. Such a person would benefit from receiving specific training regarding high-functioning autism. The aide is most helpful when they assist in developing and implementing the structure that will be useful in increasing the child’s independence. Providing a student with autism structured opportunities to interact with peers can help him develop his social skills. Another way a student with autism might benefit is to have an assigned buddy who accompanies him in some less structured social situations. As students with autism move into middle school and high school, extracurricular activities become another structured opportunity for peer interaction. Joining groups that are related to the strengths and interests of a child with autism gives them the opportunity to interact around a shared interest.

Many students with autism benefit from using a notebook that helps them organize their work and materials. Some students have difficulty remembering which books to take home. It is often helpful to give students with autism two sets of books; one for home and one for school. This reduces the number of ideas that the child needs to organize to be able to complete his homework in a timely way. It is also important for individuals with autism to learn to rely on daily schedules. By doing so, they will be able to function in a more organized and independent manner as adults. A daily schedule can be writen on the inside cover of their school notebook. Changes can be highlighted so that he can anticipate them without becoming upset.

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High Functioning Autism

Certain types of high functioning autism are often diagnosed as Aspergers Syndrome and Pervasive Developmental Disorder. Symptoms include delayed or absence of speech, the inability to appropriately relate to others, repetitive movements, such as hand flapping, and an insistence of a routine. With the correct intervention, the higher functioning child with autism can learn to overcome his difficulties and eventually be mainstreamed into a regular classroom. 

 One of the biggest misconceptions of high functioning children with autism is that they are unable to accomplish or learn many tasks as reflected by their low testing IQ scores. This is not the case, since measuring the IQ of such children cannot be done with any degree of accuracy. Many factors, such as distractions in the testing environment as well as their level of hyperactivity may interfere with the test taking. Quite simply, the child with high functioning autism may just require more time to respond along with some visual input to help clarify a question. This is especially true since children with autism tend to think in more visual terms than most people do.

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History of Asperger Syndrome

Asperger’s Disorder was first described in the 1940s by Viennese pediatrician Hans Asperger who observed autistic-like behaviors and difficulties with social and communication skills in boys who had normal intelligence and language development.

Many professionals felt Asperger’s Disorder was simply a milder form of autism and used the term “high-functioning autism” to describe these individuals. Professor Uta Frith, with the Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience of University College London and author of Autism and Asperger Syndrome, describes individuals with Asperger’s Disorder as “having a dash of Autism.”

Asperger’s Disorder was added to the American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-IV) in 1994 as a separate disorder from autism. However, there are still many professionals who consider Asperger’s Disorder a less severe form of autism.

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Characteristics of Asperger Syndrome

The severity of symptoms and the absence of language delays distinguishes Asperger Syndrome from Autism. Children with Asperger Syndrome may be only mildly affected and frequently have good language and cognitive skills. To the untrained observer, a child with Asperger’s syndrome may just seem like a typical child behaving differently.

Children with autism are frequently seen as un-social. Although, children with Asperger Syndrome usually want to fit in and have interaction with others; they simply don’t know how to do it. They may be socially awkward, not understanding of conventional social rules, or show a lack of empathy. They may have limited eye contact, seem to be unengaged in a conversation, and not understand the use of body language.

Interests in a particular subject may border on the obsessive. Children with Asperger’s syndrome frequently like to collect categories of things, such as rocks or bottle caps. They may be proficient in knowing categories of information, such as baseball statistics or Latin names of flowers. While they may have good memory skills, they have difficulty with abstract concepts.

There is no speech delay in Asperger’s. In fact, children with Asperger’s syndrome frequently have good language skills; they simply use language in different ways. Speech patterns may be unusual, lack inflection or have a rhythmic nature.  Speech may also be overly formal, with too loud or too high of pitch. Children with Asperger Syndrome may not understand the subtleties of language, such as irony and humor, or they may not understand the give-and- take nature of a conversation.

Children with Asperger Syndrome frequently have motor skill delays and may appear clumsy or awkward. Most children with Asperger’s syndrome possess average to above average intelligence.

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Asperger Symdrome Behavior Symptoms, Signs & Characteristics

Diagnosing Asperger Syndrome (AS) can be very challenging. It is challenging because Asperger Syndrome is frequently termed a “hidden disability.” The symptoms of Asperger Syndrome can typically only be seen by well-trained clinicians.

However, as subtle as the symptoms may appear, the subtleness does not make them any less challenging for parents. Frequently the challenge of getting a well-trained person to diagnosis Asperger Syndrome is the biggest challenge of parents who think their child might has Asperger Syndrome.

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Traveling with an Autistic Child: 10 Steps to Prepare

Traveling is a word that brings anxiety to many families who have children with autism. However, even though traveling can feel overwhelming to families, it is important to travel with your child! Your child will benefit from learning from the experience, as well as will the people your child will interact with when traveling!

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Autism and Asperger’s Syndrome: What’s the Difference?

High functioning autism and Asperger Syndrome can appear very similar. For family members who are around people with either one of these diagnosis they can see the differences, however, for somebody who is not frequently around these people, the differences can be very hard to observe. While some of the struggles will be the same, Asperger Syndrome can be more difficult to diagnosis because some of the symptoms are more subtle.

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Asperger Syndrome Symptoms & Signs – Social Interaction

Diagnosing Asperger Syndrome (AS) can be very challenging. It is challenging because Asperger Syndrome is frequently termed a “hidden disability.” The symptoms of Asperger Syndrome can typically only be seen by well-trained clinicians.

However, as subtle as the symptoms may appear, the subtleness does not make them any less challenging for parents. Frequently the challenge of getting a well-trained person to diagnosis Asperger Syndrome is the biggest challenge of parents who think their child might has Asperger Syndrome.

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Asperger Syndrome: Making the Transition to Adulthood

Parents who have children with Asperger Syndrome often worry about life after school. They worry, just as any other parent does about college, living independently, finding a job, and having relationships. Parents of children with Asperger Syndrome should think about this transition earlier than other parents. Parents should be working with their children to become independent and to strengthen their areas of interests.

What does happen after the free public education is gone and they have to start earning a living or living an adult life?

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