Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) Community
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Avatar universal

Suspected Autism

My son has just turned 3, he was born premature at 36 weeks gestation but has had no lingering health problems. He walked at 10-12 months.. but between 12 - 18 months i noticed he wasnt talking or developing like oither children in his playgroup. everyone told me it was ok and that boys were generally just slower.. But my 2 and a half he only knew about 25 words.. He isant showing any interest in potty training.. And likes routine. He usually leads me to what he wants rather than tell me, and has only recently started asking for food, though he only says 'biscuit' to refer to snacks. He can ask for a juice. hes happy playing by himself and around family members or people he has been around for a long time. It took him months to settle into his childminders. He has a strange obsession with cars (and things with wheels.. motorbikes etc), If i try to take them off him he will have a massive tantrum which its impossable to calm him down from. He cant peddle a bike, but will scoot himself along on it. He doesnt seem to understand the concept of ownership.. He now has about 75 words, and has seen a speach and language therapist and a pediatrician. They have assesed he is at least a year delayed in his speech. The pediatrician says he has markers for autism but is asking for a hearing screening to rule out other problems..
Does this sound like autism?
9 Responses
Avatar universal
Yep it could be. He sounds just like my three year old who is being evaluated for Aspergers or ADHD with sensory issues. The best thing you can do right now is what you are doing. Getting him speech therapy and evaluations because early intervention is the key to getting them on the path to being successful and happy. You are doing the right things so no need to freak out or stress. Having Autism doesn't mean he is broken. He will still be the same boy you love. The only thing a diagnosis will change is your ability to help him progress and develop. Good Luck! Waiting is the hardest part.
Avatar universal
NO.  I don't hear any major symptoms of Autism in your post.  Does he make avoid making eye contact?  Does he do any hand flapping or hand twisting?  Does he walk on his tip toes?  Does he verbally repeat the same words or phrases?  Does he make any strange verbalizations?  Does he play by himself rather than other children?  Does he have any remarkable talents like in music or art?
These are all questions that if you answered YES would point to autism.
My friend's 2 year old did not talk and went to speech therapy.  Now he is 4 and talking up a storm.  She actually said sometimes she wishes he would just shut up.  
There is hope for your son.  My son was diagnosed with mild autism, but he had all the symptoms that I mentioned.  
Avatar universal
My son doesn't exhibit all the signs of autism but he's still been looked at for Aspergers. Here's a list of symptoms from WebMD.

Parents often first notice the symptoms of Asperger's syndrome when their child starts preschool and begins to interact with other children. Children with Asperger's syndrome may:

Not pick up on social cues and may lack inborn social skills, such as being able to read others' body language, start or maintain a conversation, and take turns talking.
Dislike any changes in routines.
Appear to lack empathy.
Be unable to recognize subtle differences in speech tone, pitch, and accent that alter the meaning of others’ speech. Thus, your child may not understand a joke or may take a sarcastic comment literally. Likewise, his or her speech may be flat and difficult to understand because it lacks tone, pitch, and accent.
Have a formal style of speaking that is advanced for his or her age. For example, the child may use the word "beckon" instead of "call" or the word "return" instead of "come back."
Avoid eye contact or stare at others.
Have unusual facial expressions or postures.
Be preoccupied with only one or few interests, which he or she may be very knowledgeable about. Many children with Asperger's syndrome are overly interested in parts of a whole or in unusual activities, such as designing houses, drawing highly detailed scenes, or studying astronomy. They may show an unusual interest in certain topics such as snakes, names of stars, or dinosaurs.2
Talk a lot, usually about a favorite subject. One-sided conversations are common. Internal thoughts are often verbalized.
Have delayed motor development. Your child may be late in learning to use a fork or spoon, ride a bike, or catch a ball. He or she may have an awkward walk. Handwriting is often poor.
Have heightened sensitivity and become overstimulated by loud noises, lights, or strong tastes or textures. For more information about these symptoms, see sensory integration dysfunction.
Avatar universal
Thankyou for your Advice.. He has had his hearing screening and it has come back negative. His hearing is completely fine.. Just selective deafness because hes a boy lol I did wonder if maybe this was the issue because sometimes he appears to not hear me at all. The more i research Autism the more i find it probable thats what he has.

Athena he often flaps his hands and repeats single words such as juice or biscuit. as i stated in my original post it took him months to settle into his childminders.. though sometimes he seems to have no fear at all.. no stranger danger or sense that he could get hurt or that something is inappropriate. He has a terrible fear of the hoover or any such noise like that.. the hairdryer for example.

We are going back on the 19th January so hopefully we will have more answers then.
Avatar universal
oh i also forgot to mention he likes to run in circles, and he is unusually fussy about his food and routine. he seems calmer when hes in a routine and gets agitated and upset when its broken. He wont eat foods he doesnt like the feel off in his hands with the exception of beans. Ive tried encouraging him past this and have tried mixing foods in but if his food is not exactly as he likes it he just wont eat :-/
Avatar universal
Sounds like autism.  Have you tried eliminating food dyes?  My son's mild autism will intensify when he eats sugar/candy with food dyes.
Avatar universal
No i hadn't considered that.. Ive made up my mind im going to ask the Doctor to test him. Thankyou :)
Avatar universal
Let me know how things are going.  Good luck.
Avatar universal
We had our appt yesterday, and the doctor said it was obvious to her as soon as he walked in the room that he might have autism. There was a medical student sitting in and she she said to her, "Can you see the difference between this boy and the last one we saw" So i knew i was right.. But he has to have an official assessment by a specialist doctor to give the official diagnosis of "Autism" and i was told the wait list is about 6 months!! Im upset frankly that it will take this long after already waiting a year to get to this stage. I glad things are moving forward but until we have an official diagnosis we are unable to access the help we need. Does anyone know if this Is this a common length of time to wait?
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