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Could you help me understand a few things about DS? ASD related

(5 Posts)
bedelia Fri 05-Jun-15 10:15:55

Over the past month or so, DS2 seems to have become a little more intense in a few ways. I'd really like to be able to understand him a bit better, to do what I can to help him feel calm and happy, and was hoping you wonderful people could help direct a few of my main concerns?

I think DS has started to have "meltdowns" as opposed to the tantrums/bad moods/flopping on the floor we've previously been used to. He's 3.5 now, and these "episodes" have only begun to happen recently, and are becoming increasingly frequent. Last night was probably the worst - he spent about an hour utterly distraught, lashing out, trying to hurt himself. screaming and shouting. I just couldn't get through to him - soothing didn't help, nor did walking away (once I knew he was safe in the bedroom).

Mostly, the episodes are triggered by not doing something he wanted to. Yesterday's was triggered when he realised we'd not been to the local shops (supermarket instead) which as I now realise is part of his (increasingly complex!) expected after-nursery routine. This was about 4 hours after it would normally happen.

I'm wondering whether these episodes are meltdowns, as they've only recently started happening at this intensity, and usually triggered by not meeting a "want", if that makes sense? If they are, what can I look out for to avoid a full-blown meltdown? (as I honestly hadn't realised the recent "triggers" were problematic until they happened confused)

Next - DS has always been very clingy/climby/pushy. That's becoming more intense too. He likes to squeeze (and be squeezed); wants me to help him climb stairs two at a time (putting pressure on leg muscles?); asks me to "squish" his face, and other things. At the same time he's very opposed to, getting dressed/undressed/changing nappy. And he's falling over LOTS more than he used to - his legs are COVERED in bruises, and I honestly don't know where most of them have come from!

Are these things related? Sensory/dyspraxia? He's a bit big for his age, has an odd walk, but his fine motor skills seem okay (can thread things, makes intricate models out of lego, etc). I've been concerned about his balance for a long time, and constantly hover over him when we're out. Luckily his teachers have noticed too, and I'll definitely mention it when we get to CDC.

He doesn't have a Dx yet (hopefully we'll get CDC appt in the next couple of months) though all professionals involved so far have suggested an ASC. If I can guide get a rough idea of what's causing these things I can start to work out strategies now, rather than waiting for the experts.

Sorry this is long! Any advice would be much appreciated.

Jasonandyawegunorts Fri 05-Jun-15 10:40:35

After watching a documentary on the working Class the other night i decided that i could write for eastenders.
Being dedicated to my work i rented a hotel room in the heart of the eastend and watched them, carefully studying their behaviour safely from my window.
I was amazed they are so like us in many way, yet so far, you can really tell we all came from the same place once long ago.

Meltdowns start to build up Hours and hours before the "meltdown" part happens, It's like filling up a bucket with water a little bit at a time, Everytime something unexpected, or something happens it fills a little higher until it starts over flowing.

Once it gets to the point of a meltdown all you can do is try and stop him hurting himself and let him burn it off and drain himself out. Becuase that's what happens he will physically be drained.
You really have to find the triggers that happen during the day and work out workarounds for them. keep a diary of event at first.

You've done well working out about the shopping trip, something unexpected that upset his routine, which start the build up to a meltdown.
So a work around would be explaining and re explaining before nursery that after nursery we will be doing "this" instead of "this", and then after we will do "This". IYSWIM, make sure he knows what will happen so it's not a sudden change.

Jasonandyawegunorts Fri 05-Jun-15 10:41:37

Okay, forget that first paraghraph, it was supposed to be for the terrible eastenders thread over in the TELLY forum.
Sorry,I'm not good at multitasking.

PolterGoose Fri 05-Jun-15 10:45:51

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

bedelia Sat 06-Jun-15 13:21:03

Thank you both for your replies =)

Jason - I did wonder about that first part (especially as I don't get to watch Eastenders). But I must say I enjoy the way you write!

Yes, I think I should start telling him about our day plans much more in advance. I use visual aids with him at home (it really helps for unstructured weekends and school holidays), especially "Now and Next", though it might be time to progress to a full timetable and start carrying a board when we're out too.

Thanks for the suggestion of a diary. I've been keeping notes (for DLA claim and as we're waiting for CDC appointment) though I'm sure a proper diary will help me see those triggers so I can work around them.

Polter - We have a similar thing with parking (and driving routes), though thankfully DS hasn't had a meltdown about it yet, he just gets rather upset.

I've just started reading through the SPD thread - LOTS to digest, though what I've seen so far has been very relevant smile No-one has really mentioned sensory issues yet (except me!), though I'm certain DS has LOTS. Ordered the £4 book and looking forward to using it, it seems it will give me a good start in working things out.

Incidentally, I just realised how much DS is affected by the hoover when he was finally able to tell me that it scared him sad Up until now he'd just stay curled up on a chair or in another room. I already know he's terrified of hand dryers, to the point where we can't use public toilets in case someone else switches one on while we're there. Hopefully I'll be able to work out a way to help him manage this though - we can control things at home, but not when we're out and about!

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