Aspergers syndrome is related to autism and is often characterized by disruptions in social interaction and communication.
Asperger’s Syndrome or Aspergers is a diagnosis that comes under autism spectrum disorder (ASF), a common term for variants of autism.
What is aspergers?
Aspergers syndrome is referred to as a relatively mild form of autism spectrum disorder and is considered by many as an intermediate form between autism and normality.
The condition is characterized by a combination of difficulties in mutual social interaction, communication and one-sided interests – also called ‘special interests’.
The condition also leads to a limited imagination, which often results in limited behavior, interest and activity patterns.
The aspergers syndrome is named after Austrian pediatrician Hans Asperger, who in 1944 studied and described children who lacked body language, showed limited empathy for their peers and was physically clumsy.
What Causes Aspergers Syndrome ?
Aspergers are congenital, but the causes of the syndrome are unknown. It is believed that they are common with autism, and overall, hereditary conditions are of great importance, as approximately half of all children with the syndrome have a first-degree relative with Aspergers or autistic traits.
The disorder is sometimes apparent already at the age of three, but generally diagnosis is made at school age.
People with the Aspergers syndrome are usually gifted, as are some even very gifted. However, their social disabilities can often limit their great endowment.
Aspergers – how common?
It is estimated that about 0.3 percent of children and adolescents have Aspergers, but since there are different definitions of the disease, the incidence in different studies is very variable.
However, it is certain that there are significantly more boys than girls who get the condition. Four to six times boys have Asperger’s compared to girls.
What are the Aspergers Symptoms?
The condition is first and foremost characterized by disrupted social interaction. This means that people with Aspergers have difficulties in dealing with others, just as children with the diagnosis often have difficulty in ordinary play and togetherness, which can be termed as impaired emotional intelligence and empathy.
These children can often appear nerdy, shy and lonely, and for the same reason they can easily become victims of bullying. Early in childhood, it is clear to adults that these children need special consideration.
In addition, another characteristic is that people with the syndrome suffer from impaired communication -both linguistic and non-linguistic communication.
Although an Aspergers person’s own language may be well-developed in terms of both grammar and word composition, they may have difficulty engaging in ordinary conversation, especially on personal and emotional matters.
Often, they also have learning difficulties – for example in school. However, children with aspergers have excellent memory and a good ability to learn by heart.
In addition, Aspergers people often have impaired skills in coordination and basic motor skills.
Aspergers Syndrome Diagnosis
If you suspect that your child has Aspergers, it is important that the child be thoroughly examined by a doctor. Because the syndrome often occurs with a number of physical illnesses – especially epilepsy.
At the physician, the child will have a hearing and vision examination as well as a psychological test, inorder to map the child’s social and linguistic skills. If there is a possibility of developmental disorder, the child will subsequently be treated by child and adolescent psychiatric assessment.
Treatment of the aspergers syndrome depends on the child’s age and the individual’s special needs.
There is no general reason to treat with medication for the condition, as no drugs have yet been found to work. However, medication can be used in concomitant conditions such as sleep problems, behavioral disorders or depression.
Instead, it is recommended that you try to encourage the child to learn communicative skills / languages, and it is important to promote and build on the child’s talents and strengths.
A pediatric psychiatrist or pediatrician is responsible for discussing treatment with parents, and it may also be a good idea to offer psychosocial help and support to relatives of someone with Aspergers syndrome.
Aspergers – the future prospects
You cannot treat the aspergers syndrome directly, but on the other hand, as a family of a person with Asperger’s, you can constantly work on improving the quality of their life. Therefore, it is important to familiarize yourself with the condition, you should know what to do from an early age. Next, it is also important to make sure that both the Aspergers person and his family get the proper help from experts.