Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) Community
1.3k Members
Avatar universal

Could this be Autism

My daughter is 14 months and has some odd behaviors.  She makes good eye contact and smiles while making eye conact if she knows and likes you, but gets very upset and hard to sooth if she does not know you or does not like you.  She cries alot and gets is this odd position (lays on her stomach, twist her body, and puts right foot over left foot while looking at the floor).  We are unsure why she does this and thought it was stomach cramps, but now it seems like she does this when she is upset.  She is delayed in talking and will not point at what she wants.  She yells, cries, and gets in her position until you figure out what she wants.  We are having a hard time with her and can't get an appointment with a Developemental Doctor until January.  Any thoughts???
48 Responses
Avatar universal

My 4 year old little boy has recently been diagnosed with autistic spectrum disorder, and adhd, as in the name there's a whole spectrum of behaviours attached to autism, my son is extremely speeched delayed, and undergoing speech theraphy, but due to adhd, there unable to get him to sit for long enough, and with what you've said it sounds that your daughter is going through normal development, she's only 14 months old and to be honest with you my daughter who is perfectly normal and healthy, who's now 3 didn't speak much till she was about 2, she now speaks perfectly, the lying on the floor, sounds to me a little like a tantrum, although i can't be sure about that because of her age. All babies at some stage fear strangers, my daughter now doesn't like being around strangers, when my son was your daughters age there was really nothing he was doing that suggested there was somthing wrong it only started to show when he was about 2 1/2 and it was only his speech that was bothering us at that point.
These are some of the behaviours my son has-
Speech Development
Routine attachment
Understanding emotions
He can become quite upset and aggressive at times
Making Lines or piles with his toys and cars - if this gets disturbed he can become quite violent.
Still not sleeping through the night- i think this is attached to his adhd though.
This is just a little of his behaviours and so if you feel as though there is a problem with your daughter i would definately take her to the appointment, as i wish we had noticed it earlier.
I hope all goes well for you and wish you all the best in the future and i hope she hasn't got it, as it is really hard to deal at times, although i've got to say thing's are improving with him, and he's such a special little boy and i wouldn't change him for the world!!!!
Take Care!!
Avatar universal
donna-Read Jenny Macarthys book Louder than Words

nahambacher-Yes if your daughter is not pointing and is not talking you need to get her evaluated. That is a big red flag something is wrong.
Avatar universal

She's only 14 months old, what do you expect her to be doing? Stringing sentences together?
by 14 months old this is what she should be doing,  At 14 months, your toddler understands many more words than she can say. Her spoken vocabulary likely consists of about three to five words, typically "Mama," "Dada," and one other simple word such as "ball" or "dog," but she learns the meanings of new words every day. As she starts to add words to her vocabulary, you'll notice that she looks for opportunities to practice them. Once she can say "dog," for instance, she'll look for dogs everywhere — in books, outside, on videos — just so she can point and say the word over and over again.
If your 14-month-old isn't speaking many words at this point, you can help her with the other two elements of language acquisition. When talking to your child, vary your tone, facial expressions, and hand gestures, all of which will help her understand the meanings of your words. Maintain eye contact when you talk to her so she learns to listen to you. And don't rush her when she is trying to use words — listen patiently and look her in the eye.
Just because she's isn't talking yet or pointing at things, means there's a problem all children develop differently, she may just be a late bloomer!!
Avatar universal
sorry nahambcher, the last message isn't directed at you, it's meant for tomel!
Avatar universal
Thanks for the recommendation, i've already googled it and it sound's quite good!
Sorry also if i sound a little funny about your comment, it's just that it's suprises me sometimes what people expect a baby to behave like, also to nahambacher, have you spoke to your health visitor? He/she may be able to help you with your concerns.
Avatar universal
ALL kids should be pointing by 12 months. I never said she had to be speaking in full sentences..but she should be pointing and using gestures. This is how I knew there was something off with my son...he wasnt pointing.
Avatar universal
Dont use the late bloomer excuse...it wont help the child...who can make big strides if  intervention is started early
Avatar universal

I'm sorry but i really don't agree with what you've just said, yes it's brilliant if a child has a problem to have early intervention, as i said in my first post i wish i noticed something earlier with my son, but to imply that ALL children should be pointing at 12 months is ridiculous.
ALL children meet there milestones at different stages, if by the age of 2 and there's still concern, this is when some intervention should take place.
All milestone's are given like this ie- 12 to 18 months, this is because all children do things at different stages, just because she isn't pointing now doesn't necessarily mean she won't before she's 18 months old.
Phsycologists also say that the late bloomers are supposed to be the smarter ones later on in life (Albert Einstine is an example)
And this is definately not an excuse.
Avatar universal
That example of Albert Einstein is not a good one...he was considered a Savant (like Rainman) there are VERY few of these people on earth.
Yes ALOT of  Autistic children are VERY smart I do beleive this...I DO NOT think they are retarded or dumb..no matter what any psychologist says.
If that is how you feel about it your entitled to your opinion....and nhambacher can certainly do what she feels is right for her child.
But I am not here as someone without experience giving out stupid advice...I have lived it with my own child.
Its one thing whne a child is a late talker thats fine...its another thing when they cant figure out how to gesture..they can get VERY frustrated...if you wait till say 2 the child may be extremely frustrated and the parent isnt sure what to do yet
Avatar universal

read the bottom where it says dev. health watch
Avatar universal
Yes i know it say's this - Developmental Health Watch
Alert your child's doctor or nurse if your child displays any of the following signs of possible developmental delay for this age range.
Does not crawl
Drags one side of body while crawling (for over one month)
Cannot stand when supported
Does not search for objects that are hidden while he or she watches
Says no single words ("mama" or "dada")
Does not learn to use gestures, such as waving or shaking head
Does not point to objects or pictures
Experiences a dramatic loss of skills he or she once had
But it also says - Babies develop at their own pace, so it’s impossible to tell exactly when your child will learn a given skill. The developmental milestones listed below will give you a general idea of the changes you can expect, but don’t be alarmed if your own baby’s development takes a slightly different course.
I've just said previously that just because she isn't doing these thing's at 14 months doesn't necessarily mean she won't do them, just because she's not doing them now means there's definately a problem, and i've also said that if she's concerned definately speak to someone about it.
Also she never once mentioned her child not being able to make gestures, gesturing and pointing are two different thing's, what if her parent's don't go around pointing at thing's where do you think she's going to learn it from, and even if there's a problem that they should be concerned about what do you think anyone can do about it, they can't even treat my son yet because of his age, and he's 4 going on 5, 14 months is just to early to tell if there's going to be an ongoing problem, and that is what i've been trying to say all along!!!
Avatar universal
I'm also not some silly person going round giving advice to people about something i know nothing about, and all i was saying was that at 2 years old they should have a better understanding of this childs development, because in my opinion she's too young to make a clear judgement!!
Avatar universal
Of course it doesnt mean she wont do them...in fact I am positive she will..my son did eventually to.But there was lots of frustration.And your right pointing and gesturing are 2 different thing..my apology....my son was not only not pointing, but not clapping or shaking or nodding his head... My son started getting early intervention at 19 months old..he is now 5.  
Avatar universal
See if she said these thing's that you just said i would definately say go and see someone straight away, but what i was trying to say to her is not to worry too much as she may just pick these things up at a later stage.
What was your child's diagnosis?
We only got some intervention when he turned 3, as he got lost in the change of the health checks, and when i mentioned something to my health visitor she just basically said that he was ok and there was nothing to worry about, it was only when he started nursery, and having some problems  when i put my foot down and requested a new health visitor, the new one is great though and has helped us so much over the past year, i can't believe the change in him since then, so i totally agree early intervention is the key to helping these children.
Avatar universal
I have a seven year old who has presented a unique challenge. He doesn't fit the clinical definition of Autism, but he does fit the Wisconsin DOE's definition. His mother is in denial, she thinks he's "a little behind". On the other hand, my youngest will be 1 on the 30th. He started crawling the day he was 8 months. He started 'cruising' two days later. He took his first steps the day he was 11 months. He now walks everywhere (and sprints pretty good too). He has a seven word/phrase/sound functional vocabulary (dada, mama, buba[brother], baba[bottle], yum, yuck, ouch), compared to my oldest who's first word was 'juice' at about 20 months.

Sorry to ramble on with contrast and comparison. The point is, my tiny guy does about the same thing you describe, except that he flattens out and kicks up his leg while screaming (the same leg he kept digging into my wife's spine in utero), but his big brother never had tantrums. He doesn't point at anything, but my oldest did nothing but point. A diagnosis based on the info you provided would be a guess at best.

What you describe doesn't sound like anything too concerning, but I've always been an advocate of erring on the side of caution. I'd rather be paranoid than childless.
Avatar universal
I've just got to say the comment I'd rather be paranoid than childless, i so definately agree with!!!!
Avatar universal

My son was put "at risk for autism" at 3 he no longer fit that category..He still presents speech problems (just pronunication and articulation) so he still receives speech therapy...but he uses all the correct verbs, pronouns, adjectives, adverbs etc that a 5 yr old should and uses them in the right context... I suspect as he gets older he may get an ADHD or ADD diagnosis..but who knows.
282234 tn?1193444642
I think there seem to be alot of tempers flaring here and that should NOT be the case. This should be a supportive type environment and if you are here, it is for a reason. To either help others or seeking advice. I will try to answer what my experience with my 2 autistic boys entailed when they were younger. My 12 yr old was diagnosed in 98'. He seemed very unhappy from birth on and seemed very "stiff" when being held. He did have a few words at 15 months but I can tell you that a month or two later seemed to forget them. He would take me and lead me around the house and use my hands as if they were his own to get something. He lined up books,videos,etc....He had alot of anger but that was due to his inability to communicate effectively I later found out. At 2 yrs 5 months Neuro ruled out any neurological possibilities with MRI. Son was sick alot more than typical child, until about age 4. Later met with developmental clinic and diagnosed with PDD until the Autism Division in Columbia could test him using CARS. He was tested and diagnosed with moderate to severe autism. Enrolled him in speech therapy at USC,school at age 3 -5 and anything that was offered to me. I won't say life has been easy, it hasn't but we have fought hard to get him where he is now and he has major behavioral issues but he is doing amazing academically! Social issues are there and will most likely always be there. There is hope of going from severe autism to being what they consider "high functioning" if a parent is proactive and never take NO for an answer. You know your child better than anyone else!

If you think something is wrong, Listen to your gut instinct. Mothers were given that for a reason. I knew from the time my other son was a yr old that something wasn't "right." I let others tell me that I was being too sensitive and just paranoid and don't worry. That same child was diagnosed later than my other son due to that. I should have not listened to the people that told me that and should have trusted my instincts. I knew the warning signs and had lived it. There is a child diagnosed every 20 minutes with autism. 3 out of 4 are boys. I have been a parent of an autistic child for almost 10 yrs and more information is available than ever to people that are finding themselves searching for info. Jenny McCarthy wrote an excellent book, "Louder Than Words: A Mother's Journey Into Healing Autism. I hope this has helped!

Avatar universal
Wow,  Sorry guys, but both of my children are sick and I've been at the doctor's, hospital for x-rays, and getting med's filled.  Both just have bad colds and will be fine.  Anyway, thank you so much for all the good information.  Can't say that I'm less concerned.  I probable should have given a little more info on "BRYNN", my adopted 14 month old (will be 15 months next week).  

Brynn does clap, but does not point, nod, wave or gestures other than getting in that position if she wants something.  The other day I just wanted so bad for her to do anything to let me know she wanted her bottle, so I made a bottle when she was looking, put it on the bar and walked away.  She yelled alot, then went under where the bottle was and got in her position.  I guess I could look at that as being her way of pointing or her way of not being able to hand it and shutting down.  I did hear her say ma ma ma and da da da before one year old, but I rarely hear that any more.  She does babble alot, but no define words, just a lot of yelling.  I do see confusion alot, like she is just not getting it and having a hard time expressing herself.  

At 8 months, Brynn started crying alot and getting in her position.  We just know something was wrong because she would do this 30 times a day if not more.  Anyway, everyone agreed (doctors) that something was wrong, but no one know what.  After 20 x-rays, an upper GI, U/S, blood work and all were normal, the word autism and  asperger's syndrome started coming up by doctor's, in a nice way.  Then add in delay and now I have a lot to worry about.  I do want to know to be able to get her help as soon as possible, but now it looks like a waiting game since I can't get an appointment anytime soon.  I do have another appointment mid November for speech therapy.  Google is my best friend and my worst enemy.  I have been banking on great eye contact, but just learned that means nothing!  

Brynn just started kissing the air when I say kiss - I'm hoping that is a good sign.

God bless you guys - I am filled with worry and it is the only thing I think about.  I work so hard to see the light at the end of the tunnel and I'm not even sure this is the problem.  My husband says "it is what it is" and that is so not him and so me, but I'm having a hard time with this one.  You always want the very best for your kids.  Why would doctor bring that up if they did not see anything wrong???  The GI doctor said it was not a stomach problem and that she was a child that would need extra TLC - I'm pretty sure he called her special.  Was he trying to tell me something or am I just reading into something.  I'm sure there is more to this story that I've forgotten to add.  Just keep us in your prayers and I will do the same for you and your family.  Thanks again!!!

P.S.  I loved the book Louder Than Words and I guess that is why I need more answers.   My daughter will not be getting her 15 month shots at this time.  Better safe than sorry.

Avatar universal
Thank you for your info.  Your a special person and I hope the road gets easier for you.  
Avatar universal
Thank you also for all of the info.  I want to not be concerned, but I still am.  We wave bye-bye at her all the time, but she just does not get it.  She is very, very stronge willed and I'm hoping she gets it, but just does not want to show us she gets it.  I pray she is thinking "why do they keep waving bye-bye, but never leave.  How silly are they".  Time will tell and I will soon start saying "it is what it is" I hope.  Thanks again!
Avatar universal
As a mother of 3, I'd like to caution you on "jumping the gun." Toddlers 13-23 mos. are challenging. They want what they want but aren't able to articulate their needs completely. The result? Fits and collapsing little bodies and a mother who asks, "WILL IT EVER END?!!"

Some mothers use sign language to assist communication at this age and others use pictures. You can use magnets or velcro on the back of pictures to make schedules, food choices - ANYTHING to empower her ability to communicate. Make it a game and see how she responds. It's worth a try and can give you more information to bring to the doctor. Take it one day at a time.

Other than that, here are a few questions to ponder:

1. What was Brynn's birth history? Were there any complications, early delivery, etc.? Birth complications could impact her ability to communicate or understand communication which could increase her frustration.
2. When was she adopted? Was she in an orphanage? Did she receive good infant care where her needs were met (feedings, diapering, etc). Poor infant care could impact her ability to bond and nuture and this can mimic some of the signs of autism.
3. How does she play with toys? Children with autism typically do not display functional use of objects. Ex. Strong interest in the wheels of a car rather than rolling the car as in typical play.
4. Read a book with her. Can you engage her in literacy routines (peek-a-boo, 10 little monkeys on the bed, etc.)? These types of experiences can help increase her language development as well as give you information on whether or not she is picking up routine gestures (naturally or with a lot of assistance).

Good luck!
BTW: You're supposed to worry. You're a mom. It's your job. :)
Avatar universal
Thank you so much for the info.  I will reply to your e-mail, but today I just need to walk away from the computer and get some fresh air and not think.  

Thank you again
282234 tn?1193444642
Most autistic children before intervention will rarely look up when their name is being called. My 6 yr old battled constant ear infections when younger and they thought perhaps that is why he didn't respond, he had chronic ear infections. That was not the case however. If you call your childs name and they don't even bother to glance in your direction and you see other autistic tendencies, it's of utmost importance to get your child in for testing to rule out neurological or auditory deficits that might be the reason behind it, then if NEGATIVE you would be referred to a developmental pediatrician. Again, it's IMPORTANT that you don't let anyone sway you. If you think something doesn't seem quite right, then you are most likely correct. I have seen children with autism diagnosed at 10 and the difference between a child that receives early intervention and  one that doesn't is astounding!

We owe it to our children to give them every opportunity to succeed! I would highly suggest that you locate the autism division in the nearest city and ask them to send you the most up-dated information on autism and let you decide for yourself if you think your child meets the criteria. If so, get them tested.I hope that is helpful. Good luck to all those seeking answers and trying to seek resolution. Don't give up. That's too easy. Fight for your child. I have and at times you want to but you know God gave you those children for a very good reason. My life is making sure my 2 autistic sons don't fall through the cracks.
Have an Answer?
Top Children's Development Answerers
189897 tn?1441126518
San Pedro, CA
Learn About Top Answerers
Didn't find the answer you were looking for?
Ask a question
Popular Resources
Fearing autism, many parents aren't vaccinating their kids. Can doctors reverse this dangerous trend?
Yummy eats that will keep your child healthy and happy
What to expect in your growing baby
Is the PS3 the new Prozac … or causing ADHD in your kid?
Autism expert Dr. Richard Graff weighs in on the vaccine-autism media scandal.
Could your home be a haven for toxins that can cause ADHD?