CURIOUSER      PHOTOGRAPHY    AUTISM      CURIOUS BAZAAR      HOME      SCRAPBOOKING

World Autism Awareness Day

Today, April 2nd, is World Autism Awareness Day.

Autism is a general term used to describe a group of complex developmental brain disorders known as Pervasive Developmental Disorders (PDD). (Source: Autism Speaks) It's basically neurological - their brains are wired differently, and each person is affected slightly differently and to different extents, hence the term "Autism Spectrum", as it is seen as a spectrum of symptoms or traits rather than a single common identifier.

Sienna was been diagnosed last year with Asperger Syndrome, an Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD).

In Asperger Syndrome there are severe and sustained social impairments, but impairments are not as severe in the language and communication area. Speech usually develops within the normal age range, but the ability to communicate effectively (known as language pragmatics) is impaired. The impairments seem more subtle in the very young child, and become more apparent as the child reaches pre school and school age. The Asperger person is usually in the normal intelligence range. (source: Autism Victoria)

The Raising Children website is a really good source of information, though as long as we are going ok I tend to take information in small bites and take breaks from it now and then, as there is a lot to sift through to find things that are actually helpful.

With Ash being in early intervention for *some* similar traits and development delays, but without any definitive diagnosis , it just means things can be a bit different around here! The most obvious thing is that their reactions can seem completely out of proportion to the situation, as the stimuli that overwhelms them is not immediately obvious to NTs (or Neuro-typicals). So mostly it just requires awareness and patience, and most importantly a realisation that these sensory issues and neurological quirks are both part of who they are but not the definition of who they are.

And besides the details of diagnosis and whatever, they are awesome people!

5 comments:

Jenxo said...

Just had to comment, my dd is 19 now and a 'mild' aspy kid. she is just who she is and i have to say it gets easier as they get older. Her early years were a nightnmare and took us until she was 13 to get a diagnosis. Life utterly changed for the better then. We had to make a lot of adjustments to the way we did things and that has made life so much better for all of us.
What i really wanted to say is that it will be ok , the whole primary school, friends issues was a very hard period but it does improve....your kids are beautiful jenxo

DanielleQ said...

Thank you Jenxo, Sienna has a gorgeous best friend at school and a really helpful teacher as well so we are all pretty good at the moment, which I am grateful for :)

Wendy Smith said...

What a wonderfully informative post.

My Charlie (DS5) is also diagnosed Apsergers. Startinbg kindy this year has been a challenge, but it seems to be easing off now.

It is nice to know that us Parents to ASD/Aspie kids are not alone

Michelle Macdonald said...

My son was diagnosed with Aspergers at 12. It was a very difficult time, but also a massive relief. Acceptance came and then understanding. I was told by a psychologist that the best thing I could do was to educate myself and do lots of reading. I am still learning 2 years later. Enough about us, I think that Sienna is very special and talented, and unique, and beautiful. I have an RDI book you can borrow if you like. Its a Very interesting technique.

Jenxo said...

Just had to comment, my dd is 19 now and a 'mild' aspy kid. she is just who she is and i have to say it gets easier as they get older. Her early years were a nightnmare and took us until she was 13 to get a diagnosis. Life utterly changed for the better then. We had to make a lot of adjustments to the way we did things and that has made life so much better for all of us.
What i really wanted to say is that it will be ok , the whole primary school, friends issues was a very hard period but it does improve....your kids are beautiful jenxo