Autistic Disorder, Rett’s Disorder, Childhood Disintegrative and Asperger’s Disorder
Autistic Disorder: Onset prior to age 3 years, more frequent in males/boys, average or above average intelligence with uneven cognitive skills.
Symptoms: the hallmark is disturbance in three areas: impairment in social interaction, impairments in communication, and restricted repetitive and stereotyped pattern of behaviors, interests and activities.
Hyperactivity, short attention span, Impulsivity, aggressive, self-injurious behavior, temper tantrum and abnormal eating patterns. They may not actively indulge in normal play, are fascinated with revolving objects like revolving fans, opening and closing the door, constantly turning the light on and off. Approximately 8o% of individuals with autistic disorder have some degree of intellectual disability Affects the cognitive areas such as judgment, insight and reasoning, as well as communication problems in both verbal and non-verbal aspects.
Prognosis: There is no cure for autism. Evidence demonstrate that early intense educational interventions using highly structured programs helps the clients to achieve the highest level of functioning in social, communication and cognitive skills.
Rett’s syndrome is a rare genetic neurological and developmental disorder that affects the way the brain develops, causing a progressive inability to use muscles for eye and body movements and speech. It occurs almost exclusively in girls and it appears in the first two years of life.
Symptoms: slowing of head growth is one of the first events in Rett’s syndrome, problems with muscles and coordination, the child loses any purposeful use of her hands, stops talking and develops extreme social anxiety and withdrawal or disinterest in other people.
Childhood Disintegrative disorder is also known as Heller's syndrome. It's a very rare condition in which children develop normally until at least two years of age, but then demonstrate a severe loss of social, communication and other skills. Childhood disintegrative disorder is part of a larger category called autism spectrum disorder. Develop normally through age 3 or 4.
Symptoms: Delay or lack of spoken language, impairment in nonverbal behaviors, inability to start or maintain a conversation, lack of play, loss of bowel and bladder control, loss of language or communication skills, loss of motor skills, loss of social skills, problems forming relationships with other children and family members
Asperger’s Disorder: children typically function better than do those with autism. They generally have normal intelligence and near- normal language development. They may develop problems communicating as they get older. Asperger's syndrome was named for the Austrian doctor, Hans Asperger, who first described the disorder in 1944.
Symptoms: Problems with social skills, eccentric or repetitive behaviors, unusual preoccupations or rituals like getting dressed in a specific order, communication difficulties, limited range of interests, coordination problems and skilled or talented.