Update: October 2018
Autism – a diagnosis that terrifies each parent after
conversation with a child psychiatrist. Problem of autism disorders
studied for a long time, while remaining one of the most mysterious
pathologies of the psyche. Autism is especially pronounced in early
age (early childhood autism – RDA), isolating the child from
society and own family.
What is autism?
Autism is a common developmental disorder with a maximum deficit.
spheres of communication and emotions. In the very name of the disease lies its essence:
inside yourself. A person with autism never directs his
energy, speech, gestures. Everything he does has no social
meaning. Most often, the diagnosis is made up to 3-5 years, getting the name
RDA. Only in mild cases is autism first detected in
adolescents and adults.
Causes of Autism
In most cases, children with early childhood autism are healthy.
physically, they have no visible external flaws. Pregnancy
mothers proceeds without features. The structure of the brain of sick kids
practically does not differ from the average norm. Many
they even note the special attractiveness of the face of an autistic child. But in
In some cases, the connection of the disease with other symptoms
- rubella mother infection during pregnancy
- Cerebral palsy
- tuberous sclerosis
- fat metabolism disorders – higher risk for obese women
birth of a child with autism
- chromosomal abnormalities
All these conditions adversely affect the brain and can cause
to autistic manifestations. There is evidence that genetic
predisposition plays a role: the risk of developing the disease
The presence of autism in the family is somewhat higher. But the true causes of autism
not clear so far.
How does an autistic child perceive the world?
It is believed that the autistic can not combine the details in a single image.
That is, the person he sees as unbound ears, nose, hands and other
body parts. Inanimate objects from a sick child animated
practically does not differ. In addition, all external influences
(sounds, colors, lights, touches) cause discomfort. Kid
trying to escape from the outside world inward.
There are 4 main signs of autism in children who
manifest to one degree or another.
- Violation of social behavior
- Communication violation
- Stereotypical behavior
- Early signs of autism (up to 3-5 years old)
Disruption of social interaction
Eye-to-eye contact is absent or severely impaired.
The autistic child does not perceive the image of the interlocutor as complete,
therefore, it often looks through the person.
Poor mimicry, often not adequate situation
Sick children rarely smile when they try to cheer them. But
they can often laugh for their own reasons
not understandable. The face of an autist is usually mask-shaped, with periodic
Gestures are used only to indicate needs.
A healthy child of 1-1.5 years old, seeing an interesting object (a large
dog, rainbow, bright ball), in a hurry to share this with their parents. is he
points to an object with a finger, smiles, laughs, pulls mom for
a hand. The autist uses an indicator gesture only to indicate
their needs (eat, drink), not seeking to draw the attention of parents and
include them in the game.
Inability to understand the emotions of others
The brain of a healthy person is designed so that when looking at
the interlocutor can easily determine his mood (joy, sadness,
fear, surprise, anger). Autistic does not possess such
Lack of interest in peers
Children with autism do not participate in peer games. is heи
are located nearby and immersed in their own world. Even in the crowd of kids
you can quickly find an autistic child – he is surrounded by “aura”
extreme loneliness. If autistic and pays attention to
children, then perceives them as inanimate objects.
Difficulties in games with the use of imagination and knowledge
A healthy kid quickly learns to roll a typewriter, a doll,
treat a teddy hare. Autistic child does not understand social
roles in the game. Moreover, the autistic does not perceive the toy as an object.
generally. is he может найти у машинки колесо и крутить его несколько
hours in a row.
No response to communication and emotion manifestations by parents
It used to be that autists are not at all capable of
emotional connection with relatives. But теперь известно, что уход мамы
causes anxiety in sick children. In the presence of family members
the child is more contacted, less obsessed with his studies. The only difference
in reaction to the absence of parents. A healthy baby gets upset
crying, calling his mother, if he for a long time left his field of vision. Autist
begins to worry, but takes no action for
parents return. And there is no way to pinpoint feelings,
arising from his separation.
Severe speech delay or lack thereof (mutism)
With severe autism, children do not master speech. is heи употребляют
a few words to indicate needs, using them in one
form (drink, eat, sleep). If speech appears, she wears
rambling, not aimed at understanding by other people. Children
can spend hours repeating the same phrase, often devoid of meaning
load. About themselves autists speak in the second and third person (Kolya
wants to drink.)
Abnormal nature of speech (repetitions, echolalia)
When answering a question, a sick child repeats the entire phrase or
part of it.
An adult asks: Do you want to drink? The child answers: You
do you want to drink?
- Too loud or quiet speech, wrong intonation
- No response to own name
- The age of questions does not come or is delayed
Autistы, в отличие от обычных детей, не пристают к родителям с
hundreds of questions about the world. If this period is still
comes, the questions are very monotonous and do not carry the practical
Obsession at a certain occupation with the impossibility
A child can spend hours building towers or sorting cubes by
colors. Pulling him out of this state can be very difficult.
Performing daily rituals
Autistы чувствуют себя комфортно только в привычной им
setting. If you change the daily routine, walk route or
arrangement of things in the room – you can achieve care in yourself or
aggressive reaction of the sick kid.
Multiple repetitions of movements, devoid of meaning
For autistic children, episodes of self-stimulation are characteristic. it
stereotypical repetitive movements that the baby uses in
пугающей или непривычной setting.
- snapping fingers
- shaking his head
- other repetitive movements
Obsessive ideas and fears are characteristic. In scary situations
possible attacks of aggression and self-aggression
Early manifestations of autism in children
Most often, the disease makes itself felt quite early. By the year
you can see the lack of a smile, the reaction to the name and the unusual
baby behavior It is believed that in the first three months of life children
with autism are less mobile, have poor facial expressions and inadequate
reactions to external stimuli.
Memo for parents
If you see a strong tantrum in someone else’s child – it can
be a child with autism or another mental disorder, therefore
should behave as tactfully as possible.
The level of intelligence in autism
Most children with autism have a mild or moderate degree.
mental retardation. it связано с дефектами мозга и трудностями
in training. If the disease is combined with microcephaly, epilepsy and
chromosomal abnormalities, then the level of intelligence corresponds to
глубокой mental retardation. In milder forms of the disease and
dynamic speech development, intelligence may be normal or even
above the average.
The main feature of autism is selective intelligence.
That is, children can be strong in math, music, drawing, but
at the same time, it is far behind the peers in other parameters.
A phenomenon when an autist is extremely gifted in any
areas called savantism. Savants can play a melody,
hearing her just once. Or draw a picture seen
once, accurate to half tones. Or keep the posts in your head
numbers, producing the most complicated computational operations without
There is a special kind of autistic disorder called
Asperger Syndrome. It is believed that this is a mild form of classic
аутизма, проявляющаяся в более позднем age
- Asperger syndrome occurs after 7-10 years
- intelligence level normal or above average
- speech skills are within normal limits
- There may be problems with intonation and loudness of speech
- obsession with one lesson or studying a single phenomenon
(a person with Asperger Syndrome can talk for hours
interlocutors a story that is not interesting to anyone without paying
attention to their reaction)
- poor coordination of movements: awkward walking, strange
- self-centeredness, inability to negotiate and seek
Most people with Asperger Syndrome successfully study at
schools, institutes, find jobs, create families with the right
nurture and support.
Severe nervous system disease associated with impairment in
X chromosome, found only in girls. With similar
male fetuses are not viable and die
in utero. The incidence of the disease is approximately 1: 10,000 girls. Besides
deep autism, completely isolating the child from the environment
world, this syndrome is characterized by the following features:
- relatively normal development in the first 6-18 months
- growth retardation after 6-18 months
- loss of skills and targeted hand movements
- stereotypical movements of the hands of the type of washing or
- poor coordination and low motor activity
- speech skills disappear
Unlike classic autism, with Rett syndrome often
underdevelopment of the brain and epileptic activity,
the prognosis for this disease is unfavorable. Autism correction and
movement disorders succeed with difficulty.
Diagnosis of Autism
The first symptoms of autism seen by parents. It is close
before all pay attention to the strange behavior of the child.
This happens especially early if the family already has small children.
and have someone to compare. The earlier the parents start to sound the alarm
and resort to the help of specialists, the greater the chances of an autist
socialize and lead a normal life.
Testing with special questionnaires. When children
Autism diagnosis is done by interviewing parents and studying
behavior of the child in his familiar environment.
- Autism Diagnosis Questionnaire (ADI-R)
- Observation Scale for Diagnosing Autism (ADOS)
- Childhood Autism Rating Scale (CARS)
- Behavioral questionnaire for the diagnosis of autism (ABC)
- Autism Indicator Evaluation Checklist (ATEC)
- Young Children Autism Checklist (CHAT)
- Brain ultrasound (to exclude brain damage,
causing characteristic symptoms)
- EEG – to detect epileptic seizures (sometimes autism
accompanied by epilepsy)
- Hearing test at the audiologist – to exclude speech delay by
cause of hearing loss
Parents and others may not perceive the behavior correctly.
a child with autism (see the memo table explaining the behavior
|WHAT ADULTS SEES||IS NOT…||IT CAN BE|
The answer to the main question: is autism treated? -Not. Medicines for
this disease does not exist. There is no such pill, after drinking which
An autistic child will get out of his “shell” and socialize.
The only way to adapt an autistic person to society is
persistent daily activities and creating an enabling environment. it
great work of parents and teachers, which almost always brings
Principles of raising an autistic child:
- Understand that autism is a way of being. Child with this
the disease sees, hears, thinks and feels differently, excellent
from most people.
- Create an enabling environment for life, development and learning
baby Frightening situation and unstable daily routine inhibit
autistic skills and make them even more deeply “go in themselves”.
- Connect to work with a child psychologist, psychiatrist, speech therapist and
other specialists if necessary.
Stages of treatment for autism
- Formation of skills necessary for learning – if a child
does not establish contact – it is necessary to adjust it. If there is no speech –
it is necessary to develop at least its beginnings.
- Elimination of non-constructive behaviors: aggression and
self-aggression self-care and obsessive fears and
- Learning to emulate and observe
- Learning social roles and games (feed the doll, roll
typewriter, play doctor)
- Emotional contact training
Behavioral Autism Therapy
The most common treatment of childhood autism syndrome
conducted according to the principles of behaviorism (behavioral psychology).
One of the subtypes of this treatment is ABA-therapy.
В ее основе лежит наблюдение за поведением и реакциями baby
After studying all the features of a particular baby are selected
incentives. For someone it is a favorite food, for someone – music, sounds
or a touch of cloth. Then all the desired reactions
reinforced by such encouragement. Simply put: did it right
– got a candy. Thus, contact with the child appears,
necessary skills are fixed and destructive behavior disappears
in the form of tantrums and self-aggression.
Speech therapy classes
Almost all autists have speech problems that interfere with
communicate with people around them. Regular classes with
speech therapists allow you to adjust intonation, correct pronunciation and
to prepare a child for school.
Developing social and self-care skills
The main problem of autistic children is the lack motivation to
everyday affairs and games. They are difficult to carry away, it is difficult to teach
daily routine, maintaining hygiene. To consolidate useful
skills are used special cards. They are written in detail
or drawn a sequence of actions. For example, got up with
beds, got dressed, brushed my teeth, combed my hair, and so on.
Autism Treatment препаратами применяется только в кризисных
situations where destructive behavior prevents the baby from developing.
But we must not forget that tantrums, crying, stereotypical actions are
yet a way to communicate with the world. Much worse if calm babe
with autism all day sitting in a room and tearing up paper without leaving
contact. Therefore, the use of all soothing and psychotropic
drugs should be strictly according to indications.
It is believed that a gluten-free diet contributes to fast
recovery of autism (see symptoms of celiac disease). But while reliable
There is no scientific record of such miraculous healings.
Unfortunately, quack treatment is still popular.
stem cell micropolarization and the use of nootropics
(glycine, etc.). These methods are not only useless, but can also be
hazardous to health. And given the particular vulnerability of autistic children,
The harm of such a “treatment” can be colossal.
Often for the autistic manifestations take deficiency syndrome
внимания и гиперактивности (ADHD). It is believed that each
The third child has certain signs of this syndrome. Main
symptoms of attention deficit: restlessness, learning difficulties
school program. Children cannot concentrate on one thing.
occupation for a long time, behave too agile. Отголоски ADHD
there are also adults who have difficulty making mature decisions,
memorize dates and events. Such a syndrome needs to be identified as possible.
before and begin treatment: psychostimulants and sedatives
funds in conjunction with classes with a psychologist will allow
Hearing loss – hearing impairment of varying degrees
Hearing impaired children have speech delay of varying degrees: from
Mutism to the wrong pronunciation of some sounds. They are bad
respond to the name, do not fulfill the request and seem disobedient.
All this is very similar to autistic traits, so parents first
queue rush to a psychiatrist. A competent specialist will send the child
on audit of hearing. After correction with
hearing aids child development comes back to normal.
For a long time, autism was considered one of the manifestations of childhood
schizophrenia. It is currently known that these are two completely
different diseases that are not related to each other.
Schizophrenia, в отличие от аутизма, начинается в более позднем
age Before 5-7 years, it almost does not occur. Symptoms
develop gradually. Parents note oddities in behavior
child: fears, obsessions, self-care, self-talk
by myself. Later the delusions and hallucinations join. During the illness
small remissions with the subsequent deterioration are observed. Treatment
schizophrenia medicamentous, it is prescribed by a psychiatrist.
Autism in a child is not a sentence. No one knows why
this disease occurs. Few can explain what it feels
an autistic child in contact with the outside world. But it is known
one thing: with proper care, correction of early autism, exercise and
with the support of parents and teachers, children can lead a normal life,
learn, work and be happy.