Autism Spectrum Disorder Essay

Submitted By nataliencm
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Autism Spectrum Disorder

Autism Spectrum Disorder
Very little is know about the cause of these

disorders let alone much else
Very mysterious disability
Includes 5 different types

Autistic disorder
Asperger’s disorder
Rett’s disorder
Childhood disintegrative disorder
Pervasive development disorder

Autistic disorder

Severe developmental disability
Noticed at young age
Poor social interactions
Language development is impaired
Rigid behavior

Asperger’s Disorder

Severe often lifelong impairments in social interactions Development of repetitive patterns of behavior
Restricted areas of interest and activities
Not as severe as autism in language, cognition, and self help skills

Less prevalent types of ASD
 Rett’s disorder

Genetic deficit, effecting primarily girls
 Rapid deterioration or behavior, language and useful hand movement
 Mental retardation and seizures
 Childhood disintegrative disorder
 Rare
 Develops typical in 3-15 yr old
 Quick loss of language, social, motor, toileting skills
 Pervasive developmental disorder
 Vague and used to describe children who resemble autistic or asperger’s disorder but differ in a diagnostically significant way

Primary Behavior Characteristic of ASD
 Interaction with other People

Have a reduced ability to understand and make use of the basic rules that deal with social exchange
Rules are unwritten and include: speech, gestures, posture, movement, eye contact, choice of clothing, closeness to others, and other aspects as well.

 The lack of these cues looks different at all ages

Infants don’t recognize familiar faces, toddlers and older children don’t turn to parents when hurt and are not typically affectionate
As they progress into school, these children don’t make friends easily and are often ridiculed

 Asperger’s: Children with asperger’s have a less severe

interaction problem

Talk at people in a rude and blunt way without realizing it

Characteristics continued
 Communication Skills – affect all ASD students the severity


Autistic – involve expressive and receptive language

Some repeat all or parts of what they hear
Others are monotonous
Gestures, body movements, and eye contact are infrequent
Problem understanding spoken language

Asperger’s – have problems understanding figurative language

Figurative language is used quite frequently and would make situations awkward for the student Very literal

Characteristics continued
 Repetitive, Stereotypical, and Ritualistic Behavior

Interfere with everyday life

Rocking, spinning , arm flapping, finger flicking
May cling to string, repeatedly flush a toilet, spend lots of time putting toys up in a specific pattern,


Intense interest in things such as: weather patterns, maps , telephone books, schedules for anything from trains to TV shows.

These behaviors could be done for a variety of reasons:
To reduce anxiety
Experiments for cause and effect
Escape a situation

Secondary Behavior
 Age of Onset

Autism - Characteristics must be present before 3 yrs of age

Can be distinguished as early as 6-8 months of age
Diminished visual attention
Do not respond to own name

Asperger’s - Diagnosed at a later age like between 5 and 11 yrs of age

 Intellectual functioning – below average IQ but range is from

super to profound mental retardation
 Self-Injurious behaviors – head banging, punching,

scratching, biting

More common in autism than in asperger’s

Causal Factors of ASD
 Although the cause is not known for certain, it is thought that

the main cause are