Since my seven-year-old son’s diagnosis with Asperger’s Syndrome, I have had to answer many questions about the disorder. Since Asperger’s Syndrome is considered a social disability, it is easy to recognize in school-age children. However, there are some early warning signs to Asperger’s Syndrome that can began in infancy.
Early Warning Signs of Asperger’s Syndrome: Inconsolable Crying
When Sam was a baby, he would cry inconsolably until he was so upset that he would vomit. I couldn’t let him cry it out, but at times he wouldn’t let me pick him up and soothe him. I figured out that while he didn’t want to be held at times, he wanted to be close to me and know that I was there.
Early Warning Signs of Asperger’s Syndrome: Difficulty expressing strong emotions.
As a toddler, Sam would get “overly excited” when we played, and when he was so worked up, he would bite. It was as if he was simply overwhelmed with stimuli and had to get rid of it somehow. Once he was riled up, he was very difficult to soothe, comparable to his behavior as a baby.
In preschool, I was continually called to the school to help calm Sam from a temper tantrum. Once he became angry, no amount of talking or reasoning could penetrate his rage. The only solution was to remove him from the environment that was causing his anger. Once he left preschool, he was calm.
Early Warning Signs of Asperger’s Syndrome: Repetitive behaviors.
Sam would engage in repetitive play, to the exclusion of normal childhood behaviors. I believe the repetitive actions soothed him. He never really played with toys, in the traditional sense of playing. Instead of driving his Hot Wheels cars around the living room, he would line them up in very specific, yet varying, patterns.
Also in preschool, he was written up several times for making “mouth noises”. Sam was never quiet, and he seemed to play ‘inside his head’, making up imaginary worlds with imaginary creatures.
Early Warning Signs of Asperger’s Syndrome: Excellent short and long-term memory recall.
He also began showing signs of an incredible memory. Sam could watch a cartoon on television once and have all the lines memorized, to act out later. He remembered insignificant things from his early childhood that both his father and I had to struggle to recall.
Early Warning Signs of Asperger’s Syndrome: Diagnosis.
Neither I nor this article can diagnosis your child with Asperger’s Syndrome. The examples contained within this article are merely my own observations of my child who is now diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome.
However, if you notice your child’s behaviors are a bit odd, pay attention to the behaviors and make note of them. Any sort of record-keeping will help when it comes time to determine whether your child indeed has Asperger’s Syndrome.