Here some suggested organisations that offer expert advice on SN.
Is this autism or shyness? (Sorry long)(26 Posts)
Can he pretend a banana is a phone?
Does he use pronouns?
Does he enjoy trying new food/have a good diet?
Does he sleep well?
Does he flick his fingers?
Look at things sideways?
Repeat dialogue from films?
have you had his hearing and eyesight checked?
why not request an appointment with a developmental paediatrician, it cant hurt and there obviously is a niggle at the back of your mind.
It sounds like he's rather unsure what to do/how to behave in social situations, but although that may be part of autism, on it's own imho wouldn't necessarily mean he has autism. But as others have said, no harm at all in going again to GP to put your mind at rest. Might be worth keeping a diary of any odd or unusual behaviour, as it's so hard to remember sometimes.
In the meantime there is lots you (I mean you collectively, so family and nursery too) can do to help - eg get even more involved in playdates to faciliate games, model social communication for him (eg modelling answers for him to copy), practice the kind of conversations with him that you think he may have with other people so he starts learning what answers to give, model ways to approach other children. Nursery can be doing the same too.
Another thing is for you to be constantly talking and giving a narrative about what you're doing - sounds a bit odd, but this can definitely help children pick up and copy the kind of 'intraverbal' communication which is part of social communication.
I wonder whether it would be an option to talk to a SLT specialising in social communication? Not necessarily for a diagnosis, but to get some advice about other ways to help with this aspect.
Lots of what he does is very familiar. Mine has been hard to dx but is severely effected, but mine also has language disorder.
I think there is enough there to warrant assessment.
Nb autistic children can be very affectionate, loving and smiley.
My Ds1 now 16 has an asd diagnosis but I am still not totally convinced!!! still quite atypical. Then every now and again you think they are right. nephew same age same diagnosis but totally different. But they get on well. Ds2 no diagnosis also has some signs. if you put them all together they would be the text book child on the spectrum!! What I am saying is lots of kids aren't text book kids on thev spectrum. get it checked.And lots of idiocincratic kids at nursey age are very typical by mid to late primary. and some are personalities! Some have some sort of additional needs. But if you or others have concerns get it checked out.
I would caution you against diagnosing on your own based on an assumption that he doesn't fit the stereotype. I made that exact mistake myself. Even though ds showed autistic behavior at pre-school age, because he was affectionate and made good eye contact he "couldn't possibly have autism." Paleeeeease - that is so wrong! I could kick myself that I delayed going aggressively for a diagnosis one way or the other, all based on common ideas of what autism is and isn't.
As far as labeling, it's a double-edged sword. No label (diagnosis), no services for your child, at least not that are paid for by insurance. Don't let a fear of label (which isn't even your fear, but somebody else's fear, so why should you care?) keep you from seeking the help he deserves. Be careful which advice you accept because ultimately, your son pays the price when those pseudo-informed pre-school teachers are long out of his life.
Something else to bear in mind is that a "language disorder" isn't a better dx than "ASD". I fact prognosis is often worse.
ASD is not about how loving you are, how clever you are, or how "weird" you are. In fact you probably know many people with ASD at work/church/round and about.
How well you do is far more dependent on your underlying skills and how well you are supported.
"Send in the Idiots" is a great book written by a child who attended a specialist nursery in New York for children with ASD. He goes back and looks up his classmates to see what happened to them.
My only regret is that I listened to other people and ignored my instincts. As a result of that we lost alot of time where things could have been done to help. If you have any doubts then write them all down and go to see your GP, a good one. Ask to be referred to a Paediatrician and go from there. Wishing you lots of luck
About the M-CHAT, if it comes out saying no cause for concern, ignore it and ask your GP for a referral anyway.
I kept doing it when I was worried about my DS, it kept coming out as no cause for concern so I delayed doing anything for a while - but DS was diagnosed with ASD in November.
I'm not saying I think that's what your DS has, just that the M-CHAT's not infallible.
I agree with PolterGoose - I vaguely remember reading about that research too. Also I have a dd with ASD plus probable ADHD who is very good at pretending things are something else. Eg a coat hanger and some Sellotape = dolly zip wire. Children with autism can be very imaginative creatively, it's the social imagination they tend to struggle with. Dd is v affectionate as well - there are a lot of myths about people on the spectrum.
Ds2 is incredibly affectionate, is completely fine with eye contact both with us and people he's got used to. He's also good at imagining objects are other objects, but he will never involve us in his play or direct us to look at his play which is the social communication part.
I would also say that as you've had concerns before and the preschool have mentioned it then you should check it out. The preschool will especially have lots of experience in typically developing children and so will be able to spot differences more easily.
Also, I was incredibly shy as a child, so much I refused to speak to adults outside of the house for years, even my own Nana. But I played typically with my peers and siblings and my mum.
I also agree that it would do no harm to get an opinion from a developmental paediatrician.
My Dd3 does give a very good impression of imaginary play but actually if you look more deeply she is acting out bits from her home or school life or TV programs.
Why dont you keep a diary for a while andsee how often the unusual/quirky behaviours are occuring.
Have you looked up selective mutism? My son has this (and also aspergers) - people often think if they speak at all in a setting it can't be selective mutism (I thought this, hence our late diagnosis age 9) but actually kids only lose speech in situations where they are anxious - this may be speaking with adults but can speak well to children, for example. My son can answer direct questions in school and chats freely to peers but is utterly unable to initiate to adults in any way (can't even get a book out to leave on the table for an adult to collect, he will only hand something in if he is specifically asked for him.) One of the early signs my DS was developing SM was that he used to 'roar' at people like a dinosaur, this was a symptom of anxiety. Of course he got lots of negative feedback for doing that to his bloody grandmother so he resorted to saying nothing at all. (He was 3). Your DS copying baby noises is a clear sign of communicative discomfort and a step or two up from saying nothing at all - presumably the play date kids trigger less anxiety than the adults that he 'blanks'?
ilikemysleep - now I'm curious. I will definitely look up SM, but just quickly, do you mean that if someone used to speak (not fluently, but short sentences, and having a vocabulary of several hundred words), and then speech dries up for no apparent reason, but the ability to speak is still there and sometimes used, that could be selective mutism? I took it as just another symptom of ASD.
No, not exactly. The child is perfectly capable of speech to whatever level they are able to speak, but they are unable to produce this speech when they feel anxiety. The typical scenario is a child who speaks well at home but won't / can't speak to other adults, and sometimes to anyne outside the home. My son's case is complicated by a reduced motivation to interact because of his aspergers, but he is capable to talking at home in a way that he very rarely does outside the home. For example, he will tell me what pizza he wants from a menu but when the waiter comes over, he is unable to use his voice and cannot order, even though he knows what he wants.
SM tends to be triggered in toddlerhood. In my son's case I get very overwhelmed by watching a video of him just before he turned two, he is in a toy car with a jungle screen behind with animals on, and the lady taking the video is saying 'wave, wave' and he's interactive and grinning and waving and saying 'lions, lions!' loudly and delightedly. That must have been shortly before his crash started. He wouldn't be able to replicate that level of non-guardedness even now, and he's 12 1/2.
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