Asperger Syndrome refers to a condition that is part of the spectrum of autism disorders. These disorders are not uncommon in childhood, are generally severe and are felt to be closely associated with the inheritance patterns in families. Asperger’s arises from a developmental disorder of the nervous system that results in a set of signs and symptoms associated with disturbance in language, behavior, social interactions and learning. Asperger’s Syndrome, unlike the more typical forms of autism, is often not detected until the child has reached school age.

 

Symptoms:

  • Mildly delayed language skills.
  • Inability to make friends
  • May be quite verbal about specific topics but not likely to able to express simple feelings or understand the feelings of others.
  • Language may be odd, monotone, self-centered.
  • Fails to be aware of when to start of stop a conversation; poor grasp of another child’s conversation.
  • Ritualistic play.
  • Lack of pretend play skills.

Treatment:

  • Concentration on early recognition and language therapy.
  • Behavior therapy, addressing the consequences of behavior as much as possible.
  • Special education resources may be helpful.
  • Children with developmental disorders such as Asperger’s syndrome are eligible for specialized school services once a proper diagnosis has been made.

Call the Doctor if:

  • Language development is delayed.
  • Behavior is uncompromising or too demanding.
  • Sleep is disturbed routinely.
  • Play with other children is not satisfying or appears un-involved.
  • Conversation seems to be irrelevant and lack understanding of the subject or content of what other children are saying.

Asperger Syndrome is more easily identified when odd language, failure to play with pleasure and ritualistic behavior patterns are noted. It is not always easy to diagnose Asperger syndrome, especially in children whose language skills may seem mostly normal at times. Early recognition and understanding the feelings of a child with Asperger Syndrome are extremely helpful in addressing symptoms and creating better paths to adapting and learning. Of importance is to remember that just because a child cannot seem to speak and comprehend the way others their age are able to do, does not mean that they do not feel the discomfort of not being accepted or understood.

Much is being learned about dealing with Asperger Syndrome and Autism Spectrum Disorders.  Ask your child’s doctor for help. Obtain referrals to professionals who are experienced in diagnosing and treating these conditions. Sadly, many people will claim they have the right cure and the best treatment and yet prove to know virtually little about what your child with Asperger Syndrome really needs. Their claims may delay acceptable intervention and add to the cost and frustration of care. Medical Centers are a good source of information as they offer comprehensive approaches to dealing with these complex disorders. Your physician can refer you to the best source for help and work with you to give you and your child the very best chance for a successful future.