Identifying and Understanding Autism Symptoms

Autism, which is actually part of Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) isn’t always apparent immediately in a person.  Symptoms can usually be identified in a child when they are less than 3 years old, but not always. 

Some of the main symptoms of autism are impaired social, emotional and communication skills.  These are often manifested in very specific ways.  For example, individuals might have certain repetitive behaviors and have a great deal of difficulty changing their routine.  Learning, focusing, paying attention and other tasks can be difficult for individuals with autism and quite often they do these things in a way that is very different from other people.  As noted, these symptoms begin most often by the age of 3 and usually last throughout a person’s life.  There is no known cure to autism at this time.

One of the main issues for people with autism is extreme difficulty with social interaction.  When children are little – even in infancy – they usually enjoy  interaction with the world around them.  The marked lack of this type of interaction is quite evident in children with autism.  The usual smiles, finger grabbing, babbling and imitating words of the people around them is absent in toddlers with autism, which is a sign that the child should have medical attention.

As the child gets older, they don’t interact socially and may not have the desire to do so.  In addition, they often have great difficulty sharing and taking turns, thus making it more difficult to have friends.  They also might not want to be touched, cuddled or held – even by their parents – and have difficulty sharing feelings either by expressing them or listening to others express them, as it makes them feel uncomfortable interacting in this way.

Communication for people with autism is often difficult to varying degrees depending upon the individual.  Some individuals do quite well communicating while others communicate very little, if at all.  There are also issues with repetitive behaviors, motions and routines.  The repetitive behaviors and motions, such as flapping arms, can make it hard for individuals with autism to communicate or interact socially because others don’t know how to deal with these things.  Routines, though a stabilizing force can also be very rigid for a person with autism, and many people with autism cling tightly to their routines as a means of stability, but this also limits flexibility and can make it difficult to help them try different social interactions.

There are various symptoms of autism and ASD, and there is more and more research to help individuals and their families learn, grow and cope with the disorder.  With information and assistance the person with autism along with their family, can expand their world and the enjoyment they receive from it.

Entry Filed under: Common Symptoms

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