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A quick question about Aspergers/ASD/Autism...

(13 Posts)
allaboutme Tue 27-Oct-09 21:40:30

So ASD is Autistic spectrum disorder right?
Does that mean that someone with Aspergers is ASD? or is that a completely different thing?
Also if someone is 'autistic' does that mean they are more severely affected than someone who is 'ASD'? or is that again used to mean the same thing?

Sorry if I have said the wrong thing, I am trying to learn more but these points are confusing me in my reading!

Thank you smile

defineme Tue 27-Oct-09 21:48:39

ASD is a whole range/spectrum and Aspergers and High Functioning Autism are part of that spectrum. Autistic is ASD and both are general terms that include all forms of Autism. My ds has Aspergers and I describe him as autistic and someone with classic autism (the more severe part of the spectrum)is also autistic and it's all defined as asd.

defineme Tue 27-Oct-09 21:50:54

Have wrapped up pushchair by the way smile

allaboutme Tue 27-Oct-09 21:52:34

Thank you, makes much more sense now smile

allaboutme Tue 27-Oct-09 21:55:08

and thank you again for wrapping pushchair. Still cant get over how kind it is of you. smile
Couriers have emailed saying collection is on for tomorrow, so all looks on schedule!

misscutandstick Wed 28-Oct-09 07:33:43

actually i was thinking about this ('ASD' not your pushchair grin) yesterday.

DS4 has Aspergers, DS5 is autistic (DS1 is ADHD but thats a whole other story, whilst still being on the 'spectrum').

DS5 has lots of issues: hes non-verbal, has severe food intolerances and has a restricted diet. He has Pica, GDD of 2yrs (hes 3.5y) brain injury (only mild), and a lack of understanding.

DS4 has sensory issues to accompany his Aspergers.

DS4 is soooooooooo much more hard work than DS5! even tho DS5's problems are more 'severe'. Perhaps when DS4 can understand that he can object to an action, and say 'no', things will get harder!

allaboutme Wed 28-Oct-09 15:02:56

I think its because autism is a more widely known word than aspergers that I wonder about it really.
I have a friend with an autistic son and it is immediately obvious when you meet him. My brother has Aspergers and you wouldnt know at all to meet him. Even in certain situations where he would react to something you'd just think him odd or grumpy.
I'm pretty certain DS1 has Aspergers, although he's not diagnosed yet.
I wondered whether it was the 'accepted' thing to decsribe someone with Aspergers as autistic, because when talking about my brother if people havent heard of aspergers, then I would say 'its a form of autism'. But then people imagine a severely affected child and see my brother and are a bit hmm he doesnt seem autistic to me..
Same with my DS, when I mention to people that he is being assessed for ASD they mostly always say 'oh he seems fine to me, he'll catch up I'm sure. He cant be autistic' etc. Especially the in laws and close friends.
I'm rambling here lol, but hopefully making a little sense!!

Merle Sat 31-Oct-09 08:38:33

Personally I don't think the way they classify the syndrome is very helpful. I wouldn't mind if we were all on the spectrum, as at least that would acknowledge that we're all individuals with our own quirks etc. So AAM maybe we should find a different way of naming how your brother is, without tagging it onto another syndrome? I've heard it said that ASd/Aspergers is 'communication difficulties' but we don't describe physical syndromes under a global lable, if that lable is unhelpful.

BobbingForPeachys Sat 31-Oct-09 09:00:38

Apparently this may be changing in the new DSM criteria, except it hasn't been validated yet, torefelect that some kids with AS still have somelanguage issues- 'absence of developmental delay' doesn't do it justice.

Theya re being lobbied to include sensory issues as well bt who knows?


ASD = fulcilling DSM or ICD criteria,basically if your child firts the triad on the NAS pages then thats a rough idea.

ASD + no language delay = AS; the idea that it ahs to be mild as a result isn't necessariloy so, the triats in other areas can still be amrked and accompanied by comnorbid disorders. My AS child is less severe but ahrder to cope with than my ASD one.

HFA- ASD + 'normal' IQ + language delays

Classic ' Autism- ASD + low IQ + language delays (if there is language, of course)

It is worth being aware that how the other things present can affect the overall severity. DS3 for example has a DX of ASD but would be obviously HFA except that he spent so much time in autistic absences and has sever langauge delays. These can mask the potential of the child, or even hinder it- if you're in an absence in a lousd place,it doesn't matter if your child has an IQ of 45 or 145, learning will be severely impaired without proper support.

DS1 OTOH has very good lanagugae indeed (16 -21 level at 6)- and chooses to speak in a high pitched squeal called guinea pig speak (many have tried to emulate and all have failed....) much of the time. WHilst that is a choice compared to classic asd kids who don't get one, it's not a choice madewith n NT brain IYSWIM. So even though tyhe language is there, he's not always accessing it or benefitting (though obv we are glad its there, no question).

ASD is often given as a dx now becuase I am told that the worst symptoms areoften seem at 2 -5... the age of assessment and dx, soPaeds and Psychs acknowledge children can move around the spectrum. ASD as a dx allows for interventions to be tailored to a child,not a dx they were given 23 years ago.

BobbingForPeachys Sat 31-Oct-09 09:11:29

allaboutme that's a big debate LOL, one we've had on here before and there are many stances.

My personal take is that if you separated AS from the sopectrum then you willlose a lot of the support available to those children, the NAS forexample helps us immenselya s ds1's needs are immensely challenging becuase of some of his associated behaviour (he is very aggressive, and has an eating disorder which can be asd related). He will hopefully get a palcement in a ASD class at comp level (caters for HFA and AS children within a MS school), the only support we ever get is ASD focussed.

There a rea lot of arguments for as well, but becuase of the way the dx is given, it would be a ahrd task. When you give an as dx, all you are saying is that langauge development was normal, nothing about the rpesentation of any other of the areas of the triad. So you can have a child who can speak very wekk but is completely paralysed by ritualistic behaviours, or has a massive sensory problem. I ahve met somechildren with AS that clearly do ahve it- ds1 when the sensory stuff is too much,but thinking more of chiren with veryn pronounced constant stims etc.

AS tends to comewith a different set of isues as well- depressions etc that aprtly occur as a result of thhe battle to cover up the asd and cope within a NT world.

But at the lowest level, our Paed will cheerfullytell you that they now give an asd dx to peoplewith AS becuase othrwise the SSd and everyone else refuses any help.

Adults with AS diagnosesare apaprently interesting tomeet becuase atm it usually means they have been diagnosed as an adult- the Psych who does this locally says it is a good way toelarn about the challenges faced by adults withAS, as usually people cope with it (esp.females) and accept it as a part of them until they find they have specific problems at work, in relationships,with their mental health etc and seek a dx. So their reasons for seeking a dx presents a good idea of what faces many children with AS now. Adx is soemthing I am considering for myself asI have known for eyars I am mildly spectrum, but I find myself becoming very isolated and lonely because people do tend to notice the quirks before the women and I find that makes it ahrd to attract friends etc- which pretty abcks up what the psych says LOL

asteroids Mon 02-Nov-09 18:39:26

Adult with AS dx here if anyone wants to ask questions
I think there a re a few of us on the forum and, as you say, the late dx means that we have learnt coping strategies. Still have major problems with work and mental health difficulties though

wraith Fri 06-Nov-09 17:17:30

heh aspergers, i have people say thats not a learning disability but autism is,

simple thing aspergers is part of autism

like capachino is to expresso there both coffee

asd anything and everything on the spectrum

HelensMelons Fri 06-Nov-09 19:04:40

Yes, I work with adults on the spectrum (aspergers) who, as you say, got late dx - the mental health difficulties, fitting in, degrees of being able to live independently or dependently, employment - the whole works really.

If you don't mind me asking Asteroids/Wraith how do you manage the mental health difficulties?

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