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Asperger Syndrome ? Signs and Symptoms

The word autism comes from the Greek word autos, which means self. It describes the way an autistic person appears to live in his own self-contained world. Asperger Syndrome was first identified in 1943 by an Austrian doctor by the name of Hans Asperger. His papers on the syndrome were only translated into English in the late 1980s leading to the misconception that the condition is a recent discovery. Here is a summary of the diagnostic criteria used when Asperger Syndrome is suspected.

Social Impairment

This manifests as an inability and lack of desire to interact with peers. The person is also unable to read social cues and may demonstrate socially and emotionally inappropriate behavior.

Narrow Interests

A person with Asperger Syndrome will often have a focused interest in one area such as coin collecting. He will concentrate on this to the exclusion of other activities and may show repetitive behaviour such as counting and stacking the coins. In spite of his problems, the person can be academically brilliant.

Repetitive Routines

These may extend from himself to others and to various aspects of life. The routines are important as they give him a sense of balance and security.

Speech and Language Peculiarities

These are a sure sign of Asperger Syndrome and include the following:

Delayed development Formal inexpressive language Speaking in a strange tone or manner Problems with comprehension including misunderstanding literal or implied messages

Non-verbal Communication problems

A person with Asperger Syndrome is often unable to express himself through body language. The problem appears as limited or inappropriate use of gestures and facial expressions, clumsy body language and a peculiar stiff gaze.

Motor Clumsiness

Neuro-developmental examinations may come up with poor results.

More information on diagnosis can be found on Autism Help.

How Asperger Syndrome Affects Daily Life

The syndrome manifests in many ways that can cause difficulties on a daily basis. Here are some examples of what to look for:

Delayed motor milestones Difficulty in conversing Extreme shyness Mixing with inappropriate company Unusual and obsessional interests Quoting lists of facts Confusion Difficulty with multitasking Not understanding jokes or social interaction Being naive and trusting Delighting in fine details such as knobs on a stereo Lack of dress sense

Positive Attributes of Asperger Syndrome

Exceptional memory skills Ability to focus single-mindedly on a task Loyal Pleasure in repetitive activities Intelligence that may reach from average to brilliant Passion for special interests Honesty Taking people at face value Strong moral compass

If a person is diagnosed with Asperger Syndrome, it is important to let those in close contact with him or her know what the condition involves. This often leads to greater tolerance and assistance when needed in certain circumstances. People with Asperger Syndrome can be taught to manage life skills and set and achieve goals. The attitude of those around them is often the most important factor in their coping with daily life.



Written by Debbie_Roome

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Disclaimer: The information provided at Recovery From Autism (RFA) is for informational purposes only. The faculty of RFA is not providing medical advice, diagnosis or treatment and cannot replace the medical advice of your doctor or health care provider. (Full Disclaimer)