Asperger's syndrome is a disorder that is not often diagnosed in toddlers, but in older children and adults. This makes the syndrome different from similar disorders in the spectrum of autism disorders. Asperger's syndrome (AS) is pervasive development disorder. It is related to impairment of social skills, language development, cognitive development and sensory function. In this article, we shall see some information related to Asperger's checklist that will help one detect Asperger's syndrome in children. This syndrome was first described by Hans Asperger, who was a Viennese child psychologist. He worked with a group of boys who showed similar symptoms of Asperger's syndrome and behavior patterns. He found that although these boys were intelligent and had relatively normal communication skills, they had a slight indication of autism like symptoms. Asperger studied the boys and found the causes of Asperger's syndrome. He named this new disorder after himself 'Asperger's syndrome'. Unfortunately, during the Second World War, his research work disappeared for many years. Then, finally in 1980 his work reappeared and today it is known worldwide. Let us now get into the details of Asperger's checklist to understand this condition better.
What is Asperger's Syndrome?
Asperger's syndrome is an autism spectrum disorder (ASD). The characteristics of this syndrome include difficulties with social interaction, restricted and repetitive behavioral patterns and interests. The exact cause for this disorder is still unknown. It is thought to have a genetic influence. This condition does not have a single line of treatment. Early intervention helps children overcome their poor communication skills, repetitive behavior as well as obsessive and clumsy nature. Many children improve as they mature into adults, but may have communication and social problems.
Characteristics Checklist for Asperger's Syndrome
Most of the children and adults diagnosed with Asperger's Syndrome are mostly treated as absent-minded, awkward, brilliant individuals who have a difficult time in social situations. These individuals have a very good vocabulary but have no idea how to use them in their communication. They avoid looking eye to eye when speaking with others and as an adult, may have difficulty in maintaining relationships and family life. However, many may be able to learn to live comfortably in their personal and professional lives with Asperger syndrome therapy and medications, especially in case of Asperger's syndrome in adults. If you too are wondering if this description fits someone you know, you can refer to the following Asperger's syndrome checklist for more information.
- Does the child find social situations confusing?
- Does the child find it very hard to start or small talk?
- Does the child find it difficult to make an imaginative story at school?
- Does the child find it very hard to understand thoughts and feelings of other people?
- Is the child good at picking up small details and facts?
- Is the child able to focus on a particular thing for a long time?
- Is the child rude even when he does not intend to be rude?
- Does the child have very narrow, but strong interests?
- Does the child like to do things in an inflexible, but repetitive way?
- Is making friends a very difficult task for the child?
Asperger's Checklist for Parents
The following checklist for parents will help you get a fair idea if your child may have Asperger's syndrome. Your child may or may not show all the characteristics mentioned below, but you have to decipher the condition from the combination of characteristics displayed by the child.
Difficulty With Social Interaction
- The child may find it difficult to socialize and does not understand how to interact with others.
- The child fails to understand feelings and emotions correctly when placed in a group. The child does not understand group activity or the discussion going on. He/she may find it boring and often upsetting others by their behavior.
- The child may fail to start a conversation or game with peers and does not understand social rules. This means for example, the child may join a group of children in their game without asking for their permission to join. And when it's the child's turn to pass the ball or seek the other children, he/she may refuse to do so. This is because the child fails to understand it may invoke a negative reaction and spoil the fun of others.
- The child has problems to initiate and carry forward a two-way conversation. The child looks as if he/she is talking at someone rather than talking to them. Most of the talks are focused on a particular obsession of the child and the child may talk too loudly or too softly.
- When in a social situation, the child may fail to understand body gestures, body language and facial expressions.
- The child may behave in an inappropriate manner when faced with a particular social situation. For example, when someone faces a sad or tragic situation, the child may laugh at the person.
- The child will speak only on particular subjects or activities for long periods.
- The child may not make eye contact while speaking.
- The child may make unusual gestures while speaking that may seem impolite or rude.
- The child may have inappropriate facial expressions or have none at all.
- The child may not understand personal space and stand too close to someone while talking.
- The child may have problems focusing his attention on people and even topics that are not associated with his/her favorite things.
- The child may normally speak in an emotionless tone or monotone.
- The child may not be able to use language in a proper way in social situations. This may lead to inappropriate use of words that may lead to misunderstandings.
- The child may create his/her own words and use them in their conversations.
- The child may have certain words that he/she may use repetitively in a normal conversation.
- The child may not understand a conversation and may misinterpret the talk. Also, the child may find it hard to answer certain questions.
- The child may have a problem understanding what others may be thinking or feeling in a social situation or in a relationship.
- They cannot solve problems that are outside their daily routine.
- They may not like to enter or play a part in an imaginative child's play.
- They cannot learn without visual aids.
- Their fine and gross motor skills are poor, like they have poor handwriting, poor bike riding skills, etc.
- The child may react very strongly to certain smells, sounds and sights.
- The child may be under-reactive to movement, sights, sounds and even touch.
- The child may not like to eat foods with certain smell or taste and texture.
- The child may hate being touched by others.
- The child may follow a strict schedule and get anxious when that schedule is hampered in the slightest way.
- The child may show self stimulating behavior like rocking back and forth, etc.
Asperger's Checklist for Teachers
The following checklist for teachers will help one detect a child with Asperger's syndrome in a class. This will be very useful for teachers as these children may require a slightly different approach than other students.
- Does the child prefer solitary activities to group activities?
- Is the child a loner during recess and play time and tends to keep to himself most of the time?
- Does the child show compulsive behavior and stick to a certain routine?
- Does the child have difficulty in modulating his voice and have an odd speech pattern?
- Does the child find it difficult to interact socially?
- Does the child show too much or too little emotion?
- Does he expect his parents, teachers and others to understand his feelings automatically?
- Is the child over sensitive to colors, smells or sounds?
- Does the child lack empathy and cannot understand feelings of others?
- Does the child hate to participate in imaginative plays and games?
- Is the child obsessed and speaks only about certain topics?
- Have you found the child at a loss of words and making up his or her own vocabulary at times?
- Has the child often missed sarcasms, criticism or failed to understand simple jokes?
- Is the child seen avoiding eye contact when speaking or spoken to?
- Have you seen the child, especially during times of stress engaging in a repetitive behavior?
The information offered on this site is not to be used as a substitute for professional medical prevention, diagnosis, or treatment. The reader is advised to consult with a medical consultant before taking any home remedies, supplements or following any treatment advised by anyone on this site. A medical consultant will be able to provide the reader with advice that is safe and effective for an individual's specific needs and diagnose a particular health problem based on their personal medical history. If you suspect Asperger's Syndrome, please make sure you visit a professional medical expert or school administrator for more help regarding the same.