Spotting Asperger’s signs and symptoms in children, especially early signs of Aspergers, is key to help a child develop. The parents must accept this diagnosis as early as possible and learn about Asperger’s disease. Signs of Asperger’s in children is becoming easier to recognize as research for Aspergers syndrome continues to develop.
Most children are diagnosed with Asperger’s syndrome by the time they enter elementary school. However, there are still some children who haven’t been diagnosed with Aspergers, but display the symptoms. For this reason, it is important to know what these symptoms are.
Aspergers In Toddlers – Signs and Symptoms In Toddlers
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It is possible to tell whether or not a child has Asperger’s syndrome, even when they are a toddler. Some of the signs they may display include:
- Toddlers will avoid eye contact. As such, they will not look at their teachers, parents or classmates for more than a few seconds. The exact opposite is also possible in that children may stare at their teacher or parents for long periods of time.
- Toddlers may not react to other people’s facial expressions. For instance, whenever a parent smiles, the child will not smile back.
- Whenever the child starts talking, he will quickly develop a large vocabulary and advanced sentence structure. However, he will not be social or want to interact with you whenever he is talking. Instead, he will have one-sided conversations about what he is interested in. More than likely he will also talk in a flat tone.
- Toddlers will have a “meltdown” whenever they enter into sensory overload. Herein the child will either cry and throw themselves on the floor or they will roll up into a ball and not allow anyone to comfort him. This can be shocking at times because the scent, light or noise may not affect anyone else in the room.
- Asperger’s syndrome may affect a child’s gross motor skills, causing him not to be able to walk even though this would be the age-appropriate thing for him to do. These children may also have trouble climbing structures or playing with balls.
Social Interaction In School Settings For Children With Aspergers
Children who have Asperger’s syndrome oftentimes have difficulty with social situations. Whenever these children are in school you may see the following signs:
- Children may find it difficult to make friends because of the one-sided conversations that they so often have, which is common in Aspergers syndrome.
- These children may not be able to pick up on sarcasm or understand jokes. They tend to take these things literally, thus getting their feelings hurt or winding up with them in conflict with another child.
- Oftentimes these children will speak in a flat tone. This can lead them to easily misunderstand their peers.
- These children will oftentimes say their internal thoughts out loud. This is because they don’t have a way of filtering these things. Therefore, there will be times when they will just shout something out. This can be hurtful to their peers if the comment is brutally honest.
- Eye contact can sometimes be problematic. These children tend to stare at their classmates for too long. On the other hand, some will even avoid eye contact altogether.
Other Developmental Delays In Children With Asperger’s Syndrome
Some Asperger Syndrome symptoms fall into the category of developmental delays. As such, these children will oftentimes have difficulty with:
- Handwriting. Oftentimes their handwriting is poor. This can especially be seen as they grow older and are supposed to write smaller. Sometimes they will also have trouble making the transition to cursive handwriting.
- Physical education. This and recess can both be difficult times for children who have Asperger’s syndrome because they have trouble catching a ball, running and using sports equipment (i.e. a bat, a hockey stick).
- Lunch. Some children who have Asperger’s syndrome will find it difficult to use their silverware properly whenever they are eating. They may not be able to hold their fork properly or use their knife to cut their food. This is especially true for younger children.
Issues With Routines For Children With Asperger’s Syndrome
Children who have Asperger Syndrome symptoms oftentimes have difficulty whenever their routine is changed. This is why they may actually thrive whenever they are in an elementary classroom. These teachers are great whenever it comes to sticking to a schedule. However, if there’s an assembly or a shortened day, these children may become very upset due to a change in their normal, daily routine.
This is one of the big signs and symptoms of Aspergers in children that can be recognized when looking and examining.
Sensory Issues In Asperger’s Children
Other symptoms of Asperger Syndrome may appear whenever students experience sensory overload. Some of these children have a sensitivity to certain things (i.e. bright lights, loud noises, strong smells). Whenever they are around any of these things they can actually cause a sensory overload for the student. This may cause them to become very upset or even to go so far as to completely shut down.
Just because a child has one or two Asperger’s Syndrome symptoms doesn’t mean that they have this disorder. However, you should make sure to talk to your child’s teacher if you have any concerns.