What is Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD)?

Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a complex developmental condition that includes a range of developmental impairments in reciprocal social interaction and communication, combined with restricted interests and rigid and repetitive behaviours.

ASD is strongly associated with a number of coexisting conditions that may significantly impact on the wellbeing of the child or young person and their family and/or carers.

    • Mental health or behavioural disorders associated with ASD include anxiety, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, oppositional defiant disorder, behaviour that challenges, and learning (intellectual) disability.
    • Functional problems associated with ASD include sleep problems, eating problems, gastrointestinal disturbances (such as diarrhoea, abdominal pain, and constipation), and sensory issues.

What causes Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD)?

Mental health or behavioural disorders associated with ASD include anxiety, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, oppositional defiant disorder, behaviour that challenges, and learning (intellectual) disability.

Functional problems associated with ASD include sleep problems, eating problems, gastrointestinal disturbances (such as diarrhoea, abdominal pain, and constipation), and sensory issues.

Prognosis of Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD)?

ASD is a life-long disorder. The severity and impact varies greatly depending on age, development, and presence or absence of associated conditions.

The prognosis of ASD can be improved by early diagnosis and assessment because this aids understanding of why the child or young person is different from their peers.

Early diagnosis also ensures that the child or young person and their family and/or carers have prompt access to support and services in education, health services, and social care; a route into voluntary organizations; and contact with other children and families with similar experiences. All of these can improve the lives of the child or young person and their family and/or carers.

Signs of Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD) in young children?

  • not responding to their name
  • avoiding eye contact
  • not smiling when you smile at them
  • getting very upset if they do not like a certain taste, smell or sound
  • repetitive movements, such as flapping their hands, flicking their fingers or rocking their body
  • not talking as much as other children
  • repeating the same phrases

Signs of Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD) in older children?

  • not seem to understand what others are thinking or feeling
  • finding it hard to say how they feel
  • liking a strict daily routine and getting very upset if it changes
  • having a very keen interest in certain subjects or activities
  • getting very upset if you ask them to do something
  • finding it hard to make friends or prefer to be on their own
  • taking things very literally – for example, they may not understand phrases like “break a leg”

The difference in Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD) between boys and girls?

Autism can sometimes be different in girls and boys.

For example, autistic girls may be quieter, may hide their feelings and may appear to cope better with social situations.

This means autism can be harder to spot in girls.

Do not rule out autism because of:

good eye contact, smiling and showing affection to family members

  • reported pretend play or normal language milestones
  • difficulties appearing to resolve after a needs-based intervention (such as a supportive structured learning environment)
  • a previous assessment that concluded that there was no autism, if new information becomes available.

How Autistic people may act in a different way to other people?

Autistic people may:

  • find it hard to communicate and interact with other people
  • find it hard to understand how other people think or feel
  • find things like bright lights or loud noises overwhelming, stressful or uncomfortable
  • get anxious or upset about unfamiliar situations and social events
  • take longer to understand information
  • do or think the same things over and over

What you should know about Autistic Spectrum Disorder.

Being autistic does not mean you have an illness or disease. It means your brain works in a different way from other people.

It’s something you’re born with or first appears when you’re very young.

If you’re autistic, you’re autistic your whole life.

Autism is not a medical condition with treatments or a “cure”. But some people need support to help them with certain things.

Being autistic does not have to stop you having a good life.

Like everyone, autistic people have things they’re good at as well as things they struggle with.

Being autistic does not mean you can never make friends, have relationships or get a job. But you might need extra help with these things.

Autism is a spectrum. This means everybody with autism is different.

Some autistic people need little or no support. Others may need help from a parent or carer every day.

Some autistic people have average or above-average intelligence.

Some autistic people have a learning disability. This means they may find it hard to look after themselves and need help with daily life.

What other conditions children with Autistic Spectrum Disorder may have?

Autistic people often have other conditions, like:

  • attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) or dyslexia
  • anxiety or depression
  • epilepsy
  • Some genetic conditions such as Down’s Syndrome

C/o Private GP Clinic, Sunningdale, Ascot SL5 0DP

Contact Us

+447756199710

Email Us

appointments@thekidsclinic.co.uk

Request an appointment

You can get in touch here