While many parents are familiar with signs of autism in children, knowledge around the signs of Asperger’s in children is less common.
Asperger’s Syndrome is a common form of autism that many children experience. While it is no longer formally diagnosed, but rather tested and classified under the umbrella diagnosis of ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder), due to its differing characteristics, it is often not caught early enough.
Here are the common characteristics and signs of Asperger’s in children that you should be aware of.
Common characteristics of Asperger’s Syndrome
Unlike children with other expressions of autism, children with Asperger’s often have sound intellectual abilities. They are often extremely knowledgeable about their favourite topics and have advanced language skills, with well-developed vocabularies.
However, when it comes to social interaction, they can struggle. They often miss social cues and misinterpret nuance in language. Children with Asperger’s tend to be very literal and misunderstand sarcasm or irony.
Due to these factors, Asperger’s often isn’t diagnosed until later in life, often caught in the years of adolescence.
Signs of Asperger’s in children
Much like autism, signs of Asperger’s in children can be categorised in three key areas; behaviour, social interaction and communication and language.
Behavioural signs of Asperger’s in children can include:
Being obsessive around key topics of interest
Rejecting topics that do not interest them
Craving set rules and routines
Not being able to cope with change
Social signs of Asperger’s in children can include:
Having difficulty keeping a conversation going
Not having a genuine interest in people
May avoid eye contact
May interact with peers awkwardly and prefer to interact with adults
Not understanding social cues
Not show emotion or empathy
Communication and language
Verbal signs of Asperger’s in children can include:
Using a flat tone
Being able to answer questions, but not ask questions
Communicate well about their own interests, but show no regard for the interests of others
Enjoy using labels
If you suspect your child is showing signs of Asperger’s, make an appointment with your GP. The sooner you can spot an autism spectrum disorder, the sooner your child can benefit from early intervention programs.
For more information about helping children with Asperger’s Syndrome, get in touch with the friendly team at the Lizard Centre today!