Please tell me about autism experiences in 18 month if any?

(17 Posts)
looseleaf Fri 15-Feb-13 22:02:36

Hi
I don't have any experience of autism and probably am just finding DS is a difference child to our first in a normal way but just in case I hope for experiences/ reassurance if possible

ds is over-average bright (says numbers to 10, says most letters and huge vocab like antlers, cactus (sharp), hook, basically memorises any word you tell him and points to ask more.
His emotions are very tricky at times so he'll lose it very suddenly if DD is standing on the step stool he wants etc.
He's very strongly attached to me (and close family) but has to be with me 24/7 or is so inconsolable i try never to leave him.
He often won't listen or respond to me but his hearing was 'perfect' at his check a while ago. Probably he just isn't concentrating these times as when he wants to he'll follow instructions easily.
Gets very upset if a 'sad' sounding song sung at DD's school for instance and shouts 'no, no'.

Could all this be normal?

looseleaf Fri 15-Feb-13 22:14:40

I forgot to say he is fixated with clocks which started at a few months old. And with lights being on or off which is the first thing he thinks of as soon as wakes. And he twirls his hands very gracefully whenever he's concentrating! Maybe he's just eccentric ?!

ouryve Fri 15-Feb-13 22:28:00

If you look up the CHAT, that's screening which is commonly used at 18 months. You should be due a developmental check and your HV should go through this with you, as a matter of routine.

My boys were both very different at that age. DS1 was similar to yours with the number and clock fixation (he refused to eat unless the microwave and cooker clocks said the exact same time, even though one is a 24hr clock and the other isn't). He was heavily echolalic and would repeat things off the TV, but mostly used lots of jargon - though my memory's fuzzy and that possibly didn't really start in earnest until he was about 2. He was stacking and lining up everything in sight, climbing up everything fearlessly and Never.Bloody.Stopped until he dropped. It was about this time that he had his first roll on the floor and scream inconsolably for an hour tantrum.

The HV didn't pick him up with the CHAT, though, because he was using his lego Quadro as boulders to act out Thomas the Tank Engine crash scenes while she was there. She took that to be imaginative play, rather than imitation.

At 18 months, DS2 was non-verbal (not even babbling a lot of the time, apart from short bursts, lasting a few days), passive, lacking in plays skills (he'd just throw stuff around and laugh at it) and not even walking.

MrsMushroom Sat 16-Feb-13 07:37:45

loose you are probably best asking in Special Needs as there are a tonne of people there with direct experience...my DD was "quirky" too....like your DS she was very articulate and bright....she could have long conversations at 18 months and was clingy and sensitive to noise.

She's 8 now and not on the spectrum....but she's still articulate and a bit quirky.

I watched her closely as she grew....I waited for milestones like playing WITH other children at about 3 and eye contact....they all came about though she remains shy.

I agree that the CHAT test is very good and you can complete one online to try and set your mind at rest but if the results are borderline, I would see your GP...because if DS IS on the spectrum then the faster he has intervention, the better the results.

My friend's DS is being assessed soon...he's 3...he has lots of words but a lot of echolalia (repeating lines and words from books and TV) and when he talks it's not a conversation but rather a long, self absorbed chatter which is not to anyone in particular.

Like ouryve DS, my friends DS does not "play' but chucks things about and flicks things....unless he's on an ipad then he's very skillful. Another concern is that he also cries at loud noises and sticks his fingers in his ears.

It's a huge worry...I've been there and I STILL worry about DD.....ask your GP as his Mother, you have the instincts and the experience to trust.

Does he point to show things of interest rather than just ask for things?

If you google first signs autism (and maybe forepath) you should come across the first signs website. This has a database of videos showing typical & autistic behaviour. I wish it had been available when my son was 18 months.

Sorry am on phone and multitasking - if you can't find it I can link later when I'm on the computer

Wallace Sat 16-Feb-13 08:14:10

I think it does sound like typical toddler behaviour. Ds1 at that age was obsessed with fans (any sort even the ones you can see inside the cooling units in shops if you bend down and peer in), and pylons and electricity.

If you are worried though, do speak to your HV smile

looseleaf Sat 16-Feb-13 08:46:19

Thank you all so much. I've found the CHAT quiz and half of his behaviour is in the 'yes' category while half not. He does point at things to show me eg last night we were out fetching DD and he pointed 'moon'.

I mentioned my concern to DH who told me not to be silly but I'd rather be absolutely sure and see a professional in case and nothing will change that he is the lovely boy he is . I'll try googling too saintly, thanks.

MrsMushroom Sat 16-Feb-13 08:49:23

pointing is a very, very good sign that he's not on the spectrum.

looseleaf Sat 16-Feb-13 08:53:50

We've had no imaginative play but then he's quite young. His favourite thing is being read to

looseleaf Sat 16-Feb-13 08:54:57

Oh good MrsMushroom! That is so helpful as he points a lot and often silently to ask what things are

When he points, does he check back with you (eye contact) to check that you are following what he's pointing at?

Or does he point and expect you to magically know that he's pointing at something and what it is and what he wants??? Autistic children can still point, but it didn't occur to my (high functioning autistic) dd at that age that she needs to check that someone is following her pointing. Or that I might not get what exactly she is pointing at, and if she point at something wouldn't know if she wanted me to pass it to her, or tell me it's name, or remove it from her sight......

HecateWhoopass Sat 16-Feb-13 09:24:08

my eldest - No eye contact, no pointing cos he didn't give a crap if I saw something or not grin he would however grab my hand and try to throw it in the direction of something he wanted me to get), no vocalisation, no desire to interact, hated being held, no interest in faces, not interested in showing me anything unless he really needed something (eg a drink), lots of screaming and kicking and biting, never gave a shit where I was or what I was doing.

my youngest - cuddly and interactive, no talking, no pointing things out to me because it never occurred to him to show me anything - if he could see it, I could see it, in his mind, I think grin, lost eye contact but had had it (as opposed to my eldest who had never had it), very passive. Interested in me but not worried about where I was. eg. not concerned to find out if he could still see me!

Autism is as many things as there are people with it. grin

If you have concerns - get them checked out. It is always best to check than to not. If it's nothing, then all well and good. But it's best to rule it out and put your mind at ease.

Jbmummy1620 Sat 16-Feb-13 17:49:06

I have a 4 year old who has autism,after reading your post my first thought was he could have aspergers which is on the autistic spectrum,at 18 months though it is still very young to diagnose anything.

My son at 18 months was completely non-verbal and still is(apart from a couple of words),my son at the moment is fixated on watches and clocks!

I agree with what someone said above to post this on the special needs children part of the forum as you are likely to get more replies there
Xxx

insanityscratching Sat 16-Feb-13 18:05:07

I have a son and a daughter with autism for my son he didn't recognise his name, never came to me, didn't often smile, liked lights, numbers and letters and spinning things. Never played with toys, would flick pages in books, liked being read to and could read at two but didn't speak until 5 or 6. Liked his magnetic letters and would reproduce words from memory.Was very active, climbed like a monkey and was either silent or screaming in fury.
For my daughter she was very passive, liked carrying things round with her preferably pairs of things.Would tap things, liked cause and effect toys and books. Could recognise brands really quickly and would sort the Tesco tins from the Sainsburys easily. She was very quiet but could sing songs in perfect pitch after only hearing them once. She was a serious child and very well behaved never did anything that she had been told not to ever.

insanityscratching Sat 16-Feb-13 18:06:45

Should add ds was diagnosed at three and dd at age two.

SolomanDaisy Sat 16-Feb-13 22:16:47

I have a 19 month old and have been wondering about his interest in clocks - I googled it and basically every link was about ASD. He is interested in lights too and has the same interest in letters and numbers and large vocab as your son. He has had the local CHAT test though - we're not in the UK - and none of this came up on that. Wish I'd never googled the bloody clocks!

fififrog Sun 17-Feb-13 10:29:51

My DD is 23 months - she has a very large vocab and has been able to count to 20 for at least six months. She gets very stressed out by the weirdest things (currently having uncontrollable rage while we're running her bath) and also likes to switch lights on and off. She frequently ignored what I'm saying because she is too busy doing something else.

She's my first so I have nothing to compare her to but it would never occur to me there might be something "wrong" with her - from your description your DS sounds totally normal to me, but it's not easy to describe a child in a paragraph! Does he go to nursery or an experienced childminder who has plenty o other kids to compare with that you could ask for an opinion?

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