Here some suggested organisations that offer expert advice on SN.
Daughter with ASD/Aspergers? Signs and Symptoms? (Long Post!)(6 Posts)
I have several concerns regarding DD1s behaviour. She has just turned 4 and I have felt there is something 'not quite right' with her for over a year now. However many members of my family, DH included, believe I am just being over anxious and that is a normal, albeit slightly quirky, child. Hence I have not pursued the matter with professionals. She has been at nursery/preschool for just over a year, and they have mostly expressed concern regarding her listening and concentration. I have voiced my worries and they have hinted that they understand and have enlisted the help of an outreach team from a special needs school. They did an assessment a few weeks ago and have agreed to work with DD1 and hep with the transition to school. When I asked whether this service believes DD1 has difficulties of some sort, they basically said "its like peeling an onion" to find out.
This has been preying on my mind more and more and I am getting desperate for a proper assessment, because I believe early intervention will be better for her. So tonight I have tried to write a few behaviors she has that concern me and will put it to everyone to see if your children do this (ASD or not!).
1. I cannot remember her pointing much when she younger (she does now). Not like DD2 who points at everything.
2. As soon as she could move she would roll/crawl/walk off and did not seem bothered by me or DH not being nearby.
3. Up until 2 years old she referred too herself as baby rather than her name
4. She is reluctant to use the names of others ( ie. if i ask the names of her friends at preschool she gets upset and won't say).
5. She has a speech delay - this is most notable in her pronunciation and her phonics are poor.
6. She uses echolia frequently (it is like having a parrot in the room) and often gives the same answer to the same question every time it is asked (ie. what did you do at preschool today?)
7. She constantly has her hands down the back of her pants/knickers. She also twirls her hair a lot (one side of her hair is ruined from this).
8. She has poor social skills with others. With adults when they talk to her she puts her head down, frowns and makes this whiney noise. Or says something inappropriate like "gaga".
9. She doesn't play with other children and often ignores them if they talk to her. If she does play with others it always just running around and laughing manically. Sometimes she will put her face right in theirs and laugh (often putting the other child off playing!).
10. She eats sand and always picks stones up as "pets"
11. She will give eye contact when talking to an extent, but when asked to look at me (ie. for a photo or when doing her hair etc) she struggles and will often look out the side of her eyes
12.She is obsessed with animals and gets upset if I wont be mummy cat/dog/spider/bird/snail etc. She can be an animal for hours even days.
13. She will give kisses and cuddles but cuddles are quick and kisses get wiped off!
14. She has difficulties with emotion. She cried for hours tonight because she lost a toy and even when it was found, continued crying even though when asked she said she was crying at nothing.
Wow. I didnt realise that was going to be so long so thanks if your still here... I'm sure theres probably things I've missed but I think thats the bulk of it.
Another concern I have is that I heard they will not diagnose until a child is 7, has anybody had else had this problem?
the wiping kisses away is so like my son - he is 11 now and was saying yesterday how he hates hates being kissed - if you sneak a kiss he reacts so much.
all 3 of my children have ASD including my DD - she wasn't dx until she was 10 so quite late
I would go to your GP and express your concerns and ask to be referred so you can start the process at least. a path to dx can be quite long. my elder son was dx within a couple of months, my son would take about 5 years even though he is quite obvious and now in a specialist asd school.
different areas seem to have different policies on the age - adhd tends not to be dx until around 7 although can be earlier - asd can be at any age
all I can say is that follow your gut instinct - a mums instinct is rarely wrong so if you have concerns then start the referral process. it can be a long journey but there are so many people on here who have been through it and will hold you hand on the way
Firstly, the 7 thing usually applies to dyslexia and sometimes to adhd, autism is often diagnosed much earlier.
I think you should pursue assessment. It can help to do some reading around the various neuro/developmental conditions as there are a lot of overlaps, and make notes as you go. The book 'Kids in the syndrome mix' is a fairly good introduction (ignore the bipolar chapter as that doesn't tend to get diagnosed in small children in the UK). Also, start keeping a diary to help you remember stuff and to spot patterns and triggers. You can try to get video evidence of quirks and foibles too.
These Fact Files are a fab developmental resource and can help you pinpoint developmental delays and anomalies, it also gives you the language/jargon which can help with being taken seriously, especially when your child is verbal and has no learning disability.
I too would pursue assessment. Lots of issues similar to my dd. we had a lot of professionals telling us nothing was wrong initially but pushed and pushed. First she was diagnosed with social communication disorder. Now she has an ASD diagnosis and we are hopefully on the way to an EHCPlan to help her.
There is an irony about everyone knowing that early intervention is best when often there is a wait and see approach adopted especially before school starts.
It's difficult to tell you not to worry but you will feel better starting the path to assessment.
Thank you so much for the replies. I think writing everything down helped. It made me realise that all these little things are nothing on their own, and can be easily overlooked, but together they do add up and may indicate some difficulties she is having. I have made a GP appointment today for next week. I will take the list with me and hopefully we can get nearer to an answer and any help that she needs.
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