Which Autism Spectrum Disorders Symptoms You Look-out for ?
Created by Dr Himani Narula Khanna Updated on Jan 26, 2019
Children are our future and it’s true that more time and energy should be spent in the beginning years of their life for their proper development. By being aware of the normal development of a child one can pick up deviations in the early stages of life. Autism spectrum disorder or ASD is one such deviation in a child’s behavior, which can be diagnosed at an early age, thereby empowering us to help the child cope up with it at the earliest. However, before we go any further, let’s see what is Autism?
What is Autism or Autism Spectrum Disorder(ASD)
Autism is one of the fastest growing developmental disability in the world, with boys being 4 times more commonly affected than girls. It is a complex neurodevelopment disorder where children have difficulty in communication, both verbal and non-verbal, impairment in social interactions and children show restrictive and repetitive behaviors and interests. The symptoms mostly appear in the first 3 years. The learning, thinking, and problem-solving abilities of children with ASD can range from being gifted to severely challenged.
Early Autism Signs You Look-out for
Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders have difficulty in connecting with the world and these are some of the prominent signs that parents should look out for and seek help.
- Does not point at objects to show interest (for example, not point at an airplane or kite flying over).
- Does not look at objects when another person points at them.
- Have trouble relating to others or not have an interest in other people at all
- Doesn’t look into your eyes when interacting with you.
- Prefer Aloofness (living in his own world).
- Difficulty in understanding other people’s feelings or talking about their own feelings.
- Doesn’t like to be held or cuddled, or might cuddle only when they want to.
- Appear to be unaware when people talk to them, but respond to other sounds.
- Be very interested in people, but not know how to talk, play, or relate to them.
- Repeat or echo words or phrases said to them, or repeat words or phrases in place of normal language.
- Have difficulty in expressing their needs using typical words or motions
- Lack of pretend play (for example, not pretend to “feed” a doll. Unusual reactions to the way things smell, taste, look, feel, or sound.
- Lose skills they once had (for example, stop saying words they were using).
- Repeat actions again and again.
- Find it difficult to adapt to change in routine.
If you think that your child has been displaying any of the signs mentioned above or you feel that there is something amiss in the way your child plays, learns, speaks, or acts, contact your pediatrician, and share your concerns.
In case your pediatrician is not able to resolve your concerns then ask for a referral to a specialist who can do detail evaluation of your child. Specialists who can perform a detail developmental assessment and make a diagnosis will include the following doctors:
- Developmental Paediatricians (doctors who have special training in child development and children with special needs)
- Child Neurologists (doctors who work on the brain, spine, and nerves)
- Child Psychologists or Psychiatrists (doctors who know about the human mind).
Diagnosis and Dealing with Autistic Child
Even the diagnosis of Autism can be devastating for the parents of young autistic children, but on the hindsight, it may be better to have the diagnosis. Parents may undergo strong emotions of fear, grief, and denial followed by acceptance. However, the cascade of these strong emotions also motivates them to find effective help for their child. Thus it is always advisable for parents to talk either to a group of parents who are either going through or have gone through the same situation to build a support system.
Why Hope Rises?
Renowned personalities like Sir Isaac Newton, Mozart, Albert Einstein, and Charles Darwin, Michelangelo were Autistic, so there is always a scope for some hope. And I would like to conclude with a saying from Sir Martin Luther King Junior that ‘ We must accept finite disappointment, but never lose infinite hope’
Dr. Himani Khanna is a Developmental Paediatrician at Artemis Hospitals in Gurgaon.
| Apr 02, 2016
Hello dr. Himani... am a mother of 16 mnths old boy.... my boy z a very much active n happy go... he hs not yet shown ny signs of autism.. except he doesnot say ma-ma or pa-pa even if i kp on repeating thz words wn he goes on saying tah-tah , dah-dah.... he says nly few words like daaiti for light, chaai - chaai for chalo and thaa-thaa wn he asks us to hold him.. bas..... He point outs to thngs he wants... he knows tat key z inserted into d lock to open it n all.... bt again he doesnot learn which z leg, which z face etc.... most of d tym he interacts with signs... Z he alrite? Or i hv to visit sme child psychologist.. ??? Kindly suggest. ...
| Apr 02, 2016
hi dr. himani. my daughter is 3 yrs 7 months old now. she is very active. she learns everything so quickly and her memory is also good. but, she doesnt pay attention towards writing and recognising the colours. do i need to consult the doctor in this regard? plz help
| Apr 06, 2016
My son has been diagnosed with autism. He is 3. 5years. The main problem that I face in him is ue doesn't go to bed easily.. Even if he is sleepy he will play for atleast 2hours on the bed even if it's dark. And the next thing is he doesn't eat at all, this is more stressful for me because he has a rare deficiency called mcad where he is not supposed to be empty stomach for long hours. Could you please suggest mw any techniques in facing these problems
| Jul 10, 2016
Hi thanks for sharing this information. I would suggest all the parents who have minute doubt on development of their kid to proactively reach out to the pediatrician or to the child phycologist. It's always better to clear our doubts rather stay in denial. My kid was diagnosed with ADHD he had Speech delays. Now after 6 months of therapy he started talking. So go ahead and be proactive.
| Nov 25, 2016
Hi I have been using certain developmental growth and monitoring apps to keep a check on my child growth. I am using Kidnurture app . I started doing this when my developmental pediatrician suggested me to be proactive and use it. I have started sharing the pdf analysis report generated by the app. it has help me address my concerns I suggest every parent to use such tools preferably kidnurture.
| Apr 12, 2018
Early diagnosis and appropriate interventions are crucial factors in alleviating symptoms and managing autism. We bring tips to help parents deal with the challenges of raising autistic children. https://www.parentcircle.com/article/world-autism-awareness-day-recognising-the-potential-of-autistic-children/
| Apr 30, 2018
Thank you Dr Himani for this precious information. However here you have only mentioned about the symptoms of autistic children, I would like to know more about the treatment part to overcome this problem. May be atleast some 2 or 3 points. I know this is not the platform, since definitely we will be visiting the doctors. Still these points would be of great help. Thank you once again.