Autistic Spectrum Disorders are written about more readily in todays society. This may be due to better identification of Autistic Spectrum Disorders and at an earlier age.
Teams of speech and language therapists will see many children who are diagnosed or at the early stages of diagnosis of an Autistic Spectrum Disorder also seeing young adults who are living with an Autistic Spectrum Disorder.
Working with local multi-disciplinary teams, to help families consider a diagnosis at an earlier age. This has more recently involved, joint nursery visits with Paediatricians and Educational Psychologists to consider the childs presenting needs in a range of settings. Through such joint assessments the team of professionals have been able to more consistently support families considering a diagnosis.
It is our experience that families report they would have preferred a much more unified approach from the differing disciplines supporting their child. It is also crucial when considering such a diagnosis that the family is able to build up a rapport with the professionals and that information is shared readily and sensitively along the way. We are sad to hear if parents report that information has been shared insensitively and without due time and care to explain their findings further.
It is important to find Speech and Language Therapists who have a special interest in children and adults with Autistic Spectrum Disorders who can offer some extensive experience in supporting the assessment procedures and providing a therapy programme to support the individual.
Managers of speech therapists will have a specialist interest within this group of children and young adults and take pride in striving to ensure that they know about the latest approaches so that therapists are informed to use a personalised combination of these approaches to suit the child, young person and their family.
— What is Autistic Spectrum Disorder?
People with autism have difficulties communicating, forming relationships with others and find it hard to make sense of the world around them. Autism is a life-long brain disorder that is normally diagnosed in early childhood.
Repetitive behaviours are common across the spectrum, which includes Asperger Syndrome. This is a form of autism in which speech development and IQ are normal, but in which social disability can be compounded by depression or other mental health problems.
Autism is a spectrum disorder varying in symptoms, severity and impact from person to person and ranging from those with no speech and limited cognitive ability to those of high IQ and typically highly-focused interests and abilities.
Some people with autism demonstrate significantly challenging behaviours.
A distinction is made in assessing the needs of people with autism between those who have an IQ of less than 70, who are described as low functioning and classified as having a learning disability, and those who have an IQ above 70 who are often described as high functioning.
Some interesting facts about ASD;
Boys are four times more likely to be diagnosed with autism than girls.
In total more than half a million people in the UK have an autistic spectrum disorder.
Autism affects people of all racial, ethnic and socio-economic backgrounds.
There are estimated to be around 540,000 people with an autistic spectrum disorder in the UK.