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son with Asperger or other type of autism?
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son with Asperger or other type of autism?

Our son is 2 years and 4 months old.
He has delayed motor development and lack of speech (no words at all, some sounds).

By age 2, we brought him to several doctos, including a pediatric
neurologist. The tests he ordered (EEG, MRI, blood analysis) were all OK.
Actually the EEG was not normal, but the doctor said it was okay because
the MRI did not show anything. This doctor told us that he has a functional
problem, and that we should check with an specialist if he has Asperger syndrome.

On the other side, a psychologist told us that she did not see signs of
autism. He started at motor and speech stimulation a couple of months
ago, and he has improved his motor skills, but still no speech.

We are going to bring him to specialists on Asperger, but the good ones
have long waiting lists, so in the meantime we would like to check in
this forum.

Here are issues that we find worrying:

- does not talk
- does not eat solid food
- does not bring anything to his mouth
- he started to walk late, by 18 months. Never crawled.
- he started to climb small stairs by himself recently, when he was 26 months.
- when frustrated (quite often), hits his head with his hand
- teeth grinding (started recently)
- sometimes toe-walking (less of this lately)
- a lot of hand-flapping, especially when happy, some hand-clapping

On the other side, here are things that seem out of the Asperger spectrum:

- he understands everything (we have a biligual environment at home, English and Spanish)
- a lot of pointing to objects, persons, interacting with us
- smiles a lot
- enjoys playing with his brothers and his parents: hide and seek, ball, etc.
- enjoys going through books with us, pointing to the right objects when we ask
- he looks into our eyes when we interact with him
- seems very intelligent: by age 18 months he knew all the shapes; by age 2, we
discovered he already knew the numbers (we guess he learnt them by watching
'Dora the explorer' cartoons)
- he learnt colors (a rather abstract property of objects) in an afternoon. He knows
all the letters now, he likes to ask us about them and play pointing at the right
one when we ask.
- he enjoys watching cartoons of Dora the explorer and Little Einsteins since
he was very young

We asked the neurologist if this could be dyspraxia, but he thinks it is
Asperger.  We are on the waiting list of a couple of specialits on Asperger,
but they warned us that we might be too young to get a diagnose.

- Do you think the above indicates autism, or Asperger?
- If not, any idea of what it could be?
- He is doing 2 hours/week of motor and speech stimulation. We also
do some of the excercises at home. Is this enough?
- We are tyring to somewhat force him to use his mouth, using small
pieces of chocolate, lollypops etc. But he rejects them all the time.
Should we keep doing this?

Your help will be greatly appreciated! Thanks in advance.
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10 Comments Post a Comment
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Avatar_f_tn
Have you considered PDD NOS - a very high functioning form of autism?  If you google the term "PDD NOS", you should be able to find some videos which demonstrate the behaviours of children with this disorder - subtle differences.  Just wondering ....
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My son has sensory integration disorder.  This affects the nervous system and how things are processed.  It can range from mild to severe.  Motor planning is a big issue with sensory kids.  It affects everthing.  This is how the brain puts together it's plan of how to do something and then sendst he signal to the motor system to carry it out.  It happens instantly for most people but with a sensory kid, the signal can get lost or the plan doesn't come together and thus, the body doesn't know what to do.  

My son has a lot of trouble chewing.  He is a gagger. This is a motor planning issue as the coordination it takes to chew something like meat is a lot.  He'll avoid it rather than work at it.  Tactile defensiveness is also a big part of sensory integration disorder.  This is also an issue with eating as certain textures will be avoided at all costs when it comes to food in the mouth.  Adverse smells will also cause a food to be avoided completely.  A sensory kid is a "spitter"------- put food in, don't like, it is spit right back out.  

Tip toe walking is something that they relate to autism but a sensory kid will do this too.  The "tactile defensiveness" will come into play--------  you feel less of the floor if you are up on your tippie toes (ever walk through a cold garage with barefeet?  I do it on my tippie toes because the cold concrete floor feels terrible.)

Not talking can be motor planning.  Speech and tripping a lot were the first signs someone else noted about my son.  

Not being able to handle emotions well is the modulation/regulation part of sensory.  We still struggle with this and we have to walk through how to handle things appropriatly.  My son is now 6!

We had our son evaluated and he was diagnosed at 4 with sensory.  An occupational therapist does the evaluation and provides the therapy.  We've had tremendous success.  Rarely does a stranger detect an issue with my boy now.  

Google sensory integration disorder and see what you think.  Just something to put into your bucket of ideas on ways to help your child.  They can do amazing things with kids these days to help them.  Do you live in the US?  If so, let me know.  There are wonderful programs to help with evaluations and therapy and much is provided at no charge if needed.  It is a government program.  And then once a child is 3, they can begin at the public school in an early intervention preschool program where they will receive services free of charge.  Good luck
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Avatar_f_tn

Im just writing to know what type of program and therapy your child have done and the specialist he has seen. We might be on the same boat.

my son is 18 months old. he babbles...say yaya, yiyi,dada,gaga..he would say mama but does not associate it to me. he does not point to things ..if he wants something he cries for it so we just have to guess what he wants. he does not imitate sound. although he tries ..if i say papa..he will imitate and but will say yaya...he does not understand instructions too. also he shakes his head quite often and would hit his head with his hands. We started noticing that he has some delays when he wont follow through objects (as per milestones) at age 3 months - we were scared that he might be blind and we raised this concern to our family doctor at that time and he just told us that he is a boy so might be delayed but not to worry. he reached this milestone when he was 5 months old and from then on everything was just so delayed. we have changed family doctors since. finally we found a family doctor who listened to us and referred us to a pediatrician (i am in calgary,ab,canada - here, you have to get a referral from a family doctor before a pediatrician will even accept you). Took us four months to wait and We are seeing a pediatrician now and he is on a waitlist to see a developmental specialist for Early Intervention program. As for the pedia, since my son does make eye contact, he responds to his name, very playful - he ruled out autism. He has gone through a lot of blood test (we dont know the results yet).  So we dont know what it is. He just started walking one week ago. He has also been referred to a speech therapist but his appointment is not until end of september. we felt really helpless and want to help him now but its so frustrating to be on a waistlist.

im just wondering if you have any home therapy that you are doing to help your son. I would greatly appreciate any feedbacks.

from your postings..looks like we have similar situation so all i can say is keep the faith:)
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Avatar_n_tn
Hi, sorry for my late reply, I have been travelling lately.

Our son has been going to traditional speech therapy for 4 months now, but still no speech (he is 30 months old). We are not doing any specific home therapy, just following some general advice from the speech therapist (using songs etc). But see below, our view of the problem has changed...

Since I posted my message above, our son has been evaluated by several professionals, and here are the conclusions and advice that I can offer:
- get your son evaluated by different doctors, at least 2 or 3 unless they find the case to be very clear. In the case of our son, several psychologists ruled out autism, but more recently a very well known neurologist clearly told us that he is on the spectrum. So, do not trust a single doctor, sometimes they see the trees but not the forest
- even if you do not have a diagnostic, get him started asap in speech therapy. In your case, its seems you will have to wait for some more time, but try to find out alternatives meanwhile
- be optimistic: your son is still very young, and nowdays therapies can do wonders

In the case if our son, it seems rather clear now that he is in the spectrum, so in a few weeks we will get him started in a program similar to applied behavioral analysis ( http://autism.about.com/od/alllaboutaba/a/abaoverview.htm ) although we still do not have a final diagnostic. But there are enough red flags, so we want to start this asap.
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Avatar_m_tn

Im just writing to know how is your son doing now,We might be on the same boat.My 19 months old is almost same.

my son is 19 months old. he babbles...say no a lot,ball, dog, wa for water, si for sit and makes many sounds, but doesn't say mama or dada ..he would say mamamma but only 2 or 3 times so far. he does not point to things ..if he wants something he cries for it so we just have to guess what he wants. But he does imitates lots of sounds.if i say new word..he will imitate but but doesn't use...he understands only basic instructions like come, lets go, where is the ball and he looks for it, give to me,.... my son does make eye contact, he responds to his name some times he ignores, very playful. He started walking when he was 17 months. He has been referred to a speech therapist and hearing but his appointment is not until end of November.

Please let me know how is son doing now? deos he have any problem, do i need to concern about my son. please let me know asap.
thank you very much for your help...

from your postings..looks like we have similar situation so all i can say is keep the faith:)

.
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Avatar_n_tn
Hello,
I understand your concerns, but please note that 19 months is a very young age. Some kids mature at a more slowly pace and then they catch up rapidly. In any case, my best advice is that you check with a GOOD doctor with experience in developmental disorders, i.e. one with a clearly sound professional background and good referrals. This will probably save you a lot of worrying, time and money. Also note that you will probably need to wait until he is at least 24 months to check if there are real signs of something in the spectrum of autism.
My son is going to be 5 soon and he has changed enormously since he was 2. There are still some minor signs "in the spectrum", and he will probably be diagnosed as Asperger in the future, but he speaks (2 languages), eats solids (took time, but he does finally), runs, jumps as any other kid, etc. His only troubles are more in the social area, especially with large groups of kids. But the changes have been enormous.
So, be patience (hard, I know), be proactive (look for a good doctor) and enjoy your kid as he is (we are all different after all)..
Best of luck and regards!
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Avatar_m_tn
Thank you soo much....even me thinking to wait until he is 2 and thanks for your suggestion. I have faith on God definatly things will work out with our lil ones...
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Avatar_m_tn
Hi my sons is 19 months now sounds quite similar like yours, can you please tell me how he is doing now and does he have any problem.

Thank you
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Avatar_f_tn
I just read your post because I am having similar problems with my son who is 6 years old now. What therapist or professional did you go to, to get this diagnosis?
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Avatar_f_tn
I do not know if you still pay attention to this forum or not. I just saw how old these posts I'm reading actually are. But if so I would greatly appreciate the help that you offered "agnabrj" when you said, "There are wonderful programs to help with evaluations and therapy and much is provided at no charge if needed". I feel like I am unable to get help for my son since his symptoms seem to be all over the map so to speak and not completely and neatly in one disorder. Thank you very much! If anyone else is reading this and can help I would appreciate the help. Thanks!
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