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Symptoms and Treatment of Asperger’s Syndrome

After 22 years as an RN, I now write about medical issues and new medical advances. Diet, exercise, treatment, and lifestyle are important.

symptoms-and-treatment-of-aspergers-syndrome

Asperger Syndrome Facts

In 2013, asperger’s syndrome (AS) and other types of autism were folded into one category called the “autism spectrum disorder” (DSM-5) in the Diagnostic and Statistical Mental Disorders. This syndrome is now called Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). There is no known cause of ASD, but genetics and brain abnormalities may be involved.

Asperger’s syndrome is the mildest form of autism, and there are specific behaviors seen with this diagnosis. Children with this syndrome are considered to be functioning at a higher level in the autism spectrum as they have normal and often a higher level of intelligence. Asperger’s syndrome is considered to be a developmental problem known as a pervasive developmental disorder. This disorder can be treated aggressively when a child is young, and the bulk of these children with AS learn to live a full life.

symptoms-and-treatment-of-aspergers-syndrome

Symptoms of AS

Developmental delays may begin by 18-24 month. The children with asperger’s syndrome often have difficulty with social interactions, and they may not make eye contact when they are young. The child’s speech patterns may be odd or the child may have limited facial expressions, but regardless they have the capacity to love.

Children with asperger’s syndrome problem areas include:

  • Difficulty with social interactions
  • Restricted interests
  • A desire for sameness
  • Very distinctive strengths

Some of their strengths include:

  • Persistence and remarkable focus
  • Aptitude for recognizing patterns
  • Attention to detail

Some of the challenges may include:

  • Hypersensitivities to sounds, lights, tastes, etc.
  • Difficulty with nonverbal communication skills that include the sound level, the distance, the tone, etc.
  • Difficulty with the give and take of conversation
  • Anxiety or depression
  • Uncoordinated movements or clumsines

The tendencies described above may vary greatly between different children with asperger’s syndrome. Many of the children overcome their challenges by building on their strengths and building on them. While the diagnosis of Asperger syndrome is no longer used many people use the term “Aspie”.

Asperger Syndrome 10 Interesting Facts

Diagnosing Asperger’s Syndrome

Often children are misdiagnosed with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and diagnosing adults is even more difficult than children. These children often show no signs of problems with their language skills. The children are different and their unusual social skills along with their obsessive interests often set them apart. However, to be diagnosed with AS the child must have normal language skills and normal intelligence. In addition, these children have remarkable focus and persistence, and they pay attention to detail. They also have an aptitude for recognizing patterns.

Some of the unusual symptoms displayed by these children include:

  • Minimal or inappropriate social interactions
  • Conversations tend to almost always revolve around themselves or a particular topic
  • They may not understand emotions very well
  • They have minimal or inappropriate social interactions
  • These children may not understand their emotions very well
  • The children may have less facial expressions than others
  • Unusual speech expressions, such as a flat, high-pitched, quiet, louf or robotic sound
  • They don’t use nonverbal communication, such as gestures, body language or facial expressions very well
  • The child may become upset even in a small routine change
  • The children can often memorize information and facts very easily
  • They often are not very well coordinated and they have difficulty with handwriting
  • Difficulty managing emotions, which can lead to verbal or behavioral outbursts
  • They do not understand the emotions of other people
  • They may be hypersensitive to sounds, lights and textures.
symptoms-and-treatment-of-aspergers-syndrome

Therapy for Asperger’s Syndrome

The management of AS involves several types of therapy designed to address the core symptoms of this disorder. Early intervention is preferable according to most professionals, although there is no specific combination of treatments suggested. The verbal and nonverbal vulnerabilities are taken into consideration.

A therapeutic program for the treatment of AS might include:

  • Applied behavior analysis (ABA) procedures that include support of positive behavior and for training of the parents and even the school faculty so the behavior management strategies are consistent at home and school
  • Social skill training to improve effective interpersonal interactions
  • Cognitive behavior therapy designed to reduce anxiety or explosive emotions
  • Medications are used for any coexisting conditions, such as major depressive disorder or any anxiety disorder
  • Physical therapy and occupational therapy may be used to assist the child with motor coordination and sensory processing
  • There is specialized speech therapy that helps with the give and take of a normal conversation. The therapy will teach the child to talk with an up and down manner instead of in just a flat tone.

The social skills training has not been proven to be totally effective with each child. There was a randomized controlled study for training parents in dealing with problem behaviors in their child with AS that was effective. The parents reported less intense behavior problems following their training. There is no one size fits all approach for these therapies as each child is different.

Characteristics of Asperger's

In Conclusion

Parents of children with AS are usually very concerned about their child’s future. It is a good idea for parents to focus on the positive as children are going to respond to positive reinforcement. Being consistent is another important behavior that will help your child.

Putting a play time on the schedule along with the education will be a help for your child. Taking your child along on everyday activities helps them understand the normal activities of any given day.

References

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and does not substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, and/or dietary advice from a licensed health professional. Drugs, supplements, and natural remedies may have dangerous side effects. If pregnant or nursing, consult with a qualified provider on an individual basis. Seek immediate help if you are experiencing a medical emergency.

© 2020 Pamela Oglesby

Comments

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on October 26, 2020:

Hi Maria,

I am always glad to find good videos that further explain whatever the topic happens to be and I appreciate your comments.

Love and hugs!

Maria Jordan from Jeffersonville PA on October 25, 2020:

What a great follow-up article to your recent one on Intellectual Disabilities, dear Pamela.

I found both of your videos to be especially informative as well.

Love and thanks, Maria

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on October 24, 2020:

Hi Adrienne,

Whether we are talking about children or dogs I think positive reinforcement is the best way. I appreciate your very nice comments. I hope you have a very good weekend.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on October 24, 2020:

Hi Manatita,

This disorder is increasing but maybe it is being reported more also. Thanks for your lovely comments. I hope you have a great weekend.

Adrienne Farricelli on October 23, 2020:

It must be challenging for moms of children with Aspergers and I can truly understand their concerns. Like snowflakes, every child is special in his/her unique ways. I like that you suggest for parents to focus on the positives and the importance of positive reinforcement (which is what I recommend for dog training too!). As always, great article and so informative!

manatita44 from london on October 23, 2020:

Interesting article, Pamela and instructive, as always. A worrying and seemingly increasing trend among children. Let us hope. Peace. - Lantern

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on October 22, 2020:

Hi MG,

It isn't always easy to spot this disorder as the person is usually smart. I always appreciate your very nice comments.

MG Singh emge from Singapore on October 22, 2020:

Thanks, Pamela, Hadn't heard of this particular malady and it has been a revelation. I must compliment you on your knowledge and expertise.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on October 21, 2020:

Hi Sp,

I think people are so different from one another anyway and when you have asperger's syndrome that means even more differences. I think you could use the same concept when looking at therapies as what works well for one may not work well for another. Thank you reading and commenting.

Sp Greaney from Ireland on October 21, 2020:

It's very interesting to read this as I wasn't really aware of the different levels of autism. Probably each level has its own challenges but it's interesting to know that there are different therapies available for those who are diagnoised with it.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on October 21, 2020:

Hi Bill,

I am glad you found this article informative. Thanks for reading and for commenting.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on October 21, 2020:

Hi Mike,

I'm glad you learned about asperger's syndrome as it appears to be more common now. I appreciate your comments.

Bill De Giulio from Massachusetts on October 21, 2020:

Very informative, Pam. I was not aware of many of the symptoms of Asperger’s Syndrome. Thank you for the education.

Readmikenow on October 21, 2020:

Excellent article! I knew nothing about this but your article has definitely taught me a lot about it. I enjoyed reading this.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on October 21, 2020:

Hi Linda,

I am glad you found this article interesting. I hope the article does help people understand Asperger's syndrome and even understanding can go a long way with communication, etc. I appreciate your comments.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on October 21, 2020:

Hi Flourish,

I thought this information was important to help parents and maybe teachers to understand these children. Thanks for your comments.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on October 21, 2020:

Hi Abby,

I hope it will help parents with children with asperger's as the sooner the diagnosis is recognized, the sooner the parents can take steps to help. I appreciate your comments.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on October 21, 2020:

Hi Rosina,

I am glad yoy found this article interesting and educational. Thank you for reading and commenting.

Linda Crampton from British Columbia, Canada on October 20, 2020:

Thanks for sharing this useful and interesting information, Pamela. It's important to know how to help someone with Asperger's syndrome.

FlourishAnyway from USA on October 20, 2020:

I’ve known Aspie kids as a result of my daughter’s involvement in engineering and robotics. Thanks for providing a description of the condition.

Abby Slutsky from America on October 20, 2020:

This is a terrrific article for parents trying to help their diagnosed children.

Rosina S Khan on October 20, 2020:

Symptoms and Treatment of Asperger’s Syndrome were new to me. So naturally, I found the topic interesting and educational. Thank you for the wonderful share, Pamela.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on October 20, 2020:

Hi Kalpana,

I am glad my articles have been informative for you. Thank you so much for your comments.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on October 20, 2020:

Hi Audrey,

I think there has been a lot of confusion about Asperger's for many people. I appreciate your very nice comments, Audrey. Have a good week!

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on October 20, 2020:

Hi Devika,

I hope you do have a good understanding of this disorder now. I appreciate your comments.

Kalpana Iyer from India on October 20, 2020:

Interesting read as always. Thanks for sharing the info. I always learn something new with each topic you write.

Audrey Hunt from Idyllwild Ca. on October 20, 2020:

Thanks for these facts about Aspergers. Your article is informative and a big help to those of us who have not fully understood this disease.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on October 20, 2020:

Hi Liz,

I am glald you found this article to be so informative and clearly explained. Thank you for your comments.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on October 20, 2020:

Hi Ankita,

I am glad you found this article interesting. I have never heard of that book but I may check it out. I appreciate your comments.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on October 20, 2020:

Hi Louise,

I am glad you found this article interesting and helpful where your friend is concerned. Thank you so much for your comments.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on October 20, 2020:

Hi Doris,

People with AS are surely not all the same, just like your two relatives are different. One problem is that there isn't just one program for AS children. Any AS child might only need two or three of those therpies I listed in the article. So many of the children have such few symptoms that they might never get diagnosed.

I hope the understanding increases on the research level. Thank you so much for sharing your experience and commenting.

Devika Primić from Dubrovnik, Croatia on October 20, 2020:

Pamela this is interesting and informative. I knew of this disorder, but in such details as you present it here.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on October 20, 2020:

Hi Lorelie,

I agree with you about the way children were viewed years ago is much different than today.

I wasn't shy so I guess I wouldn't have been pointed out for any reason as I was just an average girl. Since you were so shy it might have been different for you. I am glad you found your voice as I imagine that makes you more comfortable in a gathering of people.

Thank you so much for your generous comments.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on October 20, 2020:

Hi Peggy,

Thank you so much for your very nice comments. Have a good week.

Liz Westwood from UK on October 20, 2020:

I have learnt a lot about Aspergers from your informative article. You have given a very clear explanation.

Ankita B on October 20, 2020:

This was an informative read. I became familiar with this syndrome only after reading a novel called "House Rules". Now I know a bit more after reading your wonderfully detailed article.

Louise Powles from Norfolk, England on October 20, 2020:

It was really interesting learning more about Aspergers. A friend of mine has a daughter who has this, and I understand very little about this, so thankyou. :)

Doris James MizBejabbers from Beautiful South on October 20, 2020:

Very interesting article, Pamela. Very good facts. I'm sorry that AS has just come to light within the last couple of decades as I have family members who fit the descriptions perfectly. Each one has been dubbed a "weirdo" in the past. One is older and was diagnosed with dyslexia as a child and received special training for that when he lived up north. He also stuttered very badly. I wouldn't call him a savant, but he is an electronic genius, and he has also taught classes on the college level. The other person is my son, a computer programmer. A coworker of his pointed out to him that he had the symptoms of AS. He researched AS, and we concluded that he really does fit the picture.

So it is too bad that there aren't any (or more) programs to help adults who exhibit these symptoms.

Lorelei Cohen from Canada on October 20, 2020:

Your articles are always so very informative. When I grew up (and I presume yourself as well) we were not placed in the definitions of normalcy as occurs today. We were just who we were or deemed slow. As an exceptionally shy child I have to wonder how I would have been classified should I have been born into today's world. I could not speak out in class during my school years and only found my public voice long after I was out of school.

Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on October 20, 2020:

Thanks for filling in some information about the diagnosis and treatment of Aspergers Syndrome. Your articles are always very informative.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on October 20, 2020:

Hi Lorna,

The skills of the AS children are so interesting. I would enjoy working with them also. I know Asperger's syndrome is often misdiagnosed and not understood. I hope that is getting better as our understanding increases. I appreciate your comment, Lorna.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on October 20, 2020:

Hi Linda,

As I understand it, savants can have AS but I don't think it is too common. The strengths of the AS children are fascinating though as so many are very smart and have some unique skills. I think a savant must have a great memory but I just don't have any percentages for you. I hope I have answered some of your questions. I appreciate your comments.

Lorna Lamon on October 20, 2020:

As a student I worked with children who had Asperger's Syndrome and they were a delight to work with. They have their own unique way of looking at the world, and I was impressed at their many attributes and abilities. An informative article Pamela which shines the spotlight on Asperger's which is often misunderstood.

Linda Lum from Washington State, USA on October 20, 2020:

Pamela, as I read this I was interested in the strengths exhibited by people with AS. Do savants have AS?

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on October 20, 2020:

Hi Linda,

I'm glad you found the article interesting. Thanks for stopping by and commenting.

Linda Chechar from Arizona on October 20, 2020:

Pamela, your interesting Asperger's Syndrome article.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on October 20, 2020:

Hi Bill,

I'm glad you learned a bit more about this disorder. It is really interesting to me also. I appreciate your comments and hope your day is fantastic as well.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on October 20, 2020:

Hi Miebakagh,

I am glad you found this article to be interesting. Thank you for your comments.

Bill Holland from Olympia, WA on October 20, 2020:

Thanks for this, as always. I knew a bit about it, but you filled in the gaps in my knowledge quite nicely. I appreciate it, Pamela.

Have a fantastic day!

Miebakagh Fiberesima from Port Harcourt, Rivers State, NIGERIA. on October 20, 2020:

Pamela, the article interests me. What a great read.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on October 20, 2020:

Hi Eric,

These children are fascinating and it is interesting that your ex-wife taught these children. I am glad you liked the article. Thank you for your comments.

Eric Dierker from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A. on October 20, 2020:

Pamela this is very interesting. I do not know why exactly but the way you describe it I think I would be in awe. My wonderful wife from a previous life used to teach these fascinating youngsters.

A really good article.