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Is this normal? Autistic or me being a worrier?

(12 Posts)
AutumnRose1988 Sun 19-Feb-17 06:36:23

One of my 4.5 month old twins is fascinated with her right hand. She holds it out straight in front of her and seems to study her fingers. I know autistic people who do this as the light through offers some sort of sensory stimulation and I'm panicking because is this what she is doing?
She smiles a lot and laughs. I pick her up and she can hold eye contact for ages and smiles and laughs when I'm entertaining her. When you hold the extended hand she seems obsessed with she will then become interested in exploring the end of your finger with her hand or will grab your nose/lips if you put your face in the way of her hand but nevertheless she seems to regularly look at her hand and I'm worried :-( she brings it to her face sometimes and accidentally hits herself and then puts it straight back out and stares again. I don't know what to think. Is this normal? Or is it an early sign??

Lovemylittlebear Sun 19-Feb-17 06:57:36

Normal baby development and (autism type self stimulators behaviour) can have a bit of a cross over as babies learn about their bodies and the world through sensory type play - so it is tricky to know from just this observation at a young age. Instead I would look st the following:
Is she following the typical developmental pattern with her milestones. Does she smile at you when you smile, does she follow you around the room with her eyes, does she reference you after she has seen something new or interesting, if you call her name or make a funny sound does she orient her attention more toward yourself etc? As she gets older it is easier to keep an eye out for signs or spot traits when you know what you are looking for but I would try not to worry too much at this stage as she is so small. If however she is more interested in her hand then your smiles, your chatter and interaction then obviously this would be more of a red flag. Hopefully it's just a developmental stage she is going through smile if you get worried slightly later down the line children with signs of autism can respond well to Pivitol Response Training (PRT) to work on shaping up even those very early behaviours involved in joint attention and social interaction (I believe from 9 months when delivered through the parents). All the best x

SleepFreeZone Sun 19-Feb-17 07:00:24

Please don't be worrying about possible autistic traits at this age, you will drive yourself crazy. Your baby sounds wonderful, eye contact and smiling and laughing is fantastic. Just enjoy, enjoy, enjoy xx

AutumnRose1988 Sun 19-Feb-17 07:02:53

Oh yes she smiles and laughs at me and follows me around the room. If her dad feeds her (who is normally at work) she would crane round and look at me (hubby then gets frustrated because I'm distracting her from his daddy daughter time hehe) She reacts very well to being propped up on my knee and seems to study my face for ages and shrieks with laughter at funny faces and things said in funny voices. It's just offputting when you put her down and then it's back to the hand.

Your advice was really helpful though and made me feel a lot better xx

AutumnRose1988 Sun 19-Feb-17 07:03:16

Sleepfreezone - thank you flower xx

cookieswirls Sun 19-Feb-17 07:05:45

I have twin boys and one of them used to do this with his hands. I never thought anything of it as I just assumed he was realising he had hands smile he's a year old now and doesn't do it any more. I wouldn't worry I'm pretty sure it's just something that babies like to do

Lovemylittlebear Sun 19-Feb-17 07:11:02

Ah that's all really good then smile try putting something on her hands like those Lamaze toy mittens and see how she reacts to them. She sounds adorable! Babies do go through phases and it can look a bit concerning if you are more aware of traits of autism etc but enjoy her and if anything worries you at all as she gets bigger then you could look into it. My dd always stroked things with her right hand when she liked the material and she self soothed like that - when she is poorly now she still does it at four. My son at 13 months Bobs when he is super excited (but all the other development is typical, joint attention on track and other interests emerging) do I know for them it's just part of their development as children. Though I work with very young children that bob and stroke as part of a range of self stimulators behaviours and they have autism. Hope you are feeling a bit more at ease c

Witchend Sun 19-Feb-17 13:45:24

Totally normal. In fact I think if the red books still have baby development stages in them that watches hands is one of them.

For ds he had that as two phases, firstly at around 4 months in the normal way. Then about a month later he noticed his dsis didn't have that (she only has one hand) and spent a week twisting round to view her little arm, and then turning back to check his hands. It was really interesting to watch.

AutumnRose1988 Sun 19-Feb-17 16:28:25

Thank you so much everyone for your reassurances. It really has helped. You know what it's like when doubt sets in. You've been really helpful and it's really put my mind at ease x

PJ67 Sun 19-Feb-17 23:05:21

It's actually A very normal stage of development for babies to look at their hands. I have 3 boys and they have all been fascinated by their hands at some point.

FromDistantOphir Tue 21-Feb-17 19:05:59

sounds completely normal to me!

ResetPassword Tue 21-Feb-17 20:37:35

From a fellow worrier it sounds normal to me too smile

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