Asperger? Hyperactive?

A healthy body is most important for any child or adult. Discuss all issues related to health in this forum.
Post Reply
mango
YellowBelt
YellowBelt
Posts: 29
Joined: Fri Aug 01,

Post by mango » Fri Nov 19, 2010 1:18 am

EN wrote:
My son shows a classic behaviour of asperger which I have actually share in this forum for the past 1 year. Of course, I did not know the meaning of asperger then. Happily share jokes in "Kids says the darnest thing" thread and the locked gifted thread.

Hi EN,

What u described seems to fit my ds too! I used to share the things that he said as jokes with others but come to think his words does demonstrate his inability to read between the lines.

Here is a recent example: His 3 year old brother is throwing a tantrum, insisting that his father "say sorry to him". The father said "I will use the cane to say sorry to u" and my 7 year old said "Why use cane? u got sore throat huh?"
EN wrote: Verbally he has no issues, just the need of him to share his knowledge on and on without noticing that his listener is not interested. He has no qualms in approaching adults and gives two cents worth of his thoughts.

His teacher has been complaining about him doing funny things in school.

He also like to share his tots and spend a lot of time analysing some very trivial matter. For example, when a family member is not coming home for dinner, he will list out all the possible reasons that he can think of for the absence.

but he can be quite sensitive at times. Just last week, when he finished the last story book borrowed from the library, he asked me to bring him to the library immediately. When I refused, he burst into tears.

Am I over worried? He seems to have some of the AS symptoms but I can't be sure.

2ppaamm
KiasuGrandMaster
KiasuGrandMaster
Posts: 2532
Joined: Wed Dec 23,
Total Likes:7

Post by 2ppaamm » Sat Nov 20, 2010 9:01 am

When I first read the symptoms of Asperger's listed below,

- Social awkwardness / no friends
- Obsessions / focused on one subject
- Lack of eye contact
- Sensitivity to noise / touch / feel of clothing
- Slow to begin talking
- Odd speech / extreme logic / very proper speech
- Anger / aggression / hitting others
- Craves ROUTINE!
- Appears lost / in own world
- Flapping hands
- Communication problems or motor skills problems
- Stimming behavior

I believed my son had many, many of them. He did not have friends. However, ever since he was moved to the gifted program, he started to have a few good friends he shared common interests with, he did not have any obsession. He has good eye contact, he is sensitive to noise, he started speaking early, he does have very proper speech and use very 'cheem' vocabulary. He did hit out on others on many occasions, he does not crave routine, and does appear lost in his own world, no flapping, and has motor skills problems, but no stimming behavior.

When the psychologist labeled him AS, I had no problem at all, because of the many aspects of AS he did show. In recent months, things changed quite a bit. As I research more, I realized that DS2 is probably not AS. Read this. http://talentdevelop.com/articles/MADDOGC.html

Yes, he does have sensory issues which led to motor skills deficiency, behavioral problems, and his giftedness led to his inability to communicate and be understood by his peers in a mainstream class.

So do be careful here. Unfortunately, there aren't many in Singapore (or in the world) who can help with the differentiating the two, and most psychologists are trained to diagnose the learning disability part and not identify the giftedness. As parents, we know our children the best. Look out for these. There are much more gifted children in our midst then we ever know. Just that many are wrong categorized as having learning disabilities. To a large extent, it looks like the ones who are highly gifted who are more likely misdiagnosed, because the overexcitabilities intensifies the more gifted you are; the overexcitabilities do manifest themselves like ADHD or ADD and sometimes Asperger's.

The mildly/moderately gifted ones do the best in schools (top 1%), the ones in the top 0.1% and those in the no-man's land are frequently underachievers and often go undetected. So make sure your little genius is not given the wrong label.

mango
YellowBelt
YellowBelt
Posts: 29
Joined: Fri Aug 01,

Post by mango » Tue Nov 23, 2010 10:53 pm

HI 2ppaamm,

Thanks for yr reply. I agreed that as parents, we know our children best and we should have faith in our judgement. However, I am still affected whenever the teacher called up to complain about his behaviour and it breaks my heart to see him shunned by his classmates. I think I see the AS traits in a close relative and I read somewhere that AS is hereditary.
PS : DH said I am over reacting.

EN
KiasuGrandMaster
KiasuGrandMaster
Posts: 1108
Joined: Mon Jul 07,

Post by EN » Sun Nov 28, 2010 3:38 pm

Sorry mango, for the late reply. Busy at work and trying to spend time with my children as much.

Is his behaviour really bad that you are worried it will impact his relationship with peers, friends & family that it warrants a diagnosis? If you are really worried, it takes 5 symtptoms to be diagnosed as asperger. The characteristic must not be a one time off incidents. It's observed over a period of time. The doctor will ask a series of questions from when he was a baby to toddler to pre-schooler to current.

As per 2ppaamm list, my child exhibits the following.


- Social awkwardness / no friends
Yes to awkwardness but he has no qualms in approaching people. Naturally very friendly. But the way he approach is socially inappropriate. Eg "Hey, I've just caught a spider. Do you know that spiders are ....". It was a game day. His friends were excited waiting for their turn to play the game.

- Obsessions / focused on one subject
Can spend time reading / watching documentaries / thinking / drawing on his favourite subject for months. How was the family impacted? I was forced to read to him daily (reading material was targetted for primary school level) but he was just 4-5 years of age. Obsessed with facts on sharks, luxury car, amphibians and whats not.

- Lack of eye contact
There's eye contact but it's a very quick, flitting kind. Now, he is maintaining eye contact. (Err...it's me actually who doesn't) :wink:

- Sensitivity to noise / touch / feel of clothing
Sensitive to sound rather than noise and definitely the feel of fabric. The doctor did ask me to differentiate the sensitivity of noise. The doctor describe some kids are really disturb by the sound of vacuum cleaner and will start screaming. Mine is not bothered by the every day noises but more of very insignificant sound which normal people will not pick up. Recent funny incident happens in his class. After exam, the class was noisy with activities. He was a standing across the room playing and walked over to his teacher and told her he heard her phone ringing. True enough the phone was ringing but the sound was swallowed by the class noise.

Feel of clothing. He doesn't like cloth tag, he will start limping when his socks are not dorn properly. Certain material like wool or cotton with low thread counts bothers him.


- Slow to begin talking
Nope. He started with sign language which I can easily understand. Then proceeded with proper sentence by 2 years old. He skipped the one word phase.

- Odd speech / extreme logic / very proper speech
He regurgitate facts word by word in a proper sentence just like the books that I was forced to read.

- Anger / aggression / hitting others
This is the very reason why I send him for diagnosis. He hurts himself when he feels that he is not able to do what he thinks he should achieve/able to do. I've seen banging his body against the wall (I'm not sure what the reason was). Banging his head and hands against the piano keyboard. He's bothered by his finger tics & the banging can be quite bad. He doesn't hit others though.

- Craves ROUTINE!
This one was observed when he was a baby to toddler. He drove dh crazy when I went to work on every public holiday. This baby/toddler cried non-stop for hours because his routine was disturbed. What's the routine? Once the sun's up, if he's at home, he must see me. If there's no me, he shld be out of the house either at nanny's or childcare. No more of this routine but other pattern emerge.

- Appears lost / in own world
When he's pondering on his subject interest or playing with lego.

- Flapping hands
Nope.

- Communication problems or motor skills problems
More of one sided communication when he tries to force feed data to the person he's talking to. Often listener will get bored & ds does not even notice that it's time to stop or the listener is lost or it' s totally one sided. No issues with motor skills.

- Stimming behavior
So far I did not notice this but the teacher in his class notice it.

Even with diagnosis, there's not much help available in Singapore. The label just help me to understand what to look out for and to understand him better.

EN
KiasuGrandMaster
KiasuGrandMaster
Posts: 1108
Joined: Mon Jul 07,

Post by EN » Sun Nov 28, 2010 3:53 pm

I feel really sad to have to tell you this. My ds4 has been diagnosed, misdiagnosed, rediagnosed and prediagnosed by 4 different psychologists here.I'm coming to a point where I've lost much hope.

What I'm resolved to do is to find help for him to function as normally as possible in the society.
2ppaamm, I have no faith after listening to the doctor in IMH what asperger is all about. The explanation is so....superficial.

I hope you will be able to help him ease in the society and able to function as normal as possible. I'm sure it's not easy. Hang in there. With lots of love and faith, things will get better.


pingsped
GreenBelt
GreenBelt
Posts: 174
Joined: Sun Mar 21,

Post by pingsped » Sun Nov 28, 2010 10:59 pm

2ppaamm wrote:When I first read the symptoms of Asperger's listed below,

- Social awkwardness / no friends
- Obsessions / focused on one subject
- Lack of eye contact
- Sensitivity to noise / touch / feel of clothing
- Slow to begin talking
- Odd speech / extreme logic / very proper speech
- Anger / aggression / hitting others
- Craves ROUTINE!
- Appears lost / in own world
- Flapping hands
- Communication problems or motor skills problems
- Stimming behavior
Of the above, only some symptoms are exclusive to children with AS
poor social skills and awkwardness, odd speech (or rather idiosyncratic use of language), obsession and stimming behaviour.

Other probable symptoms :
ASD traits eg hand flapping, poor eye contact, craves routine, sensory processing difficulties (sound, touch, emotional regulation), being lost in world


From what I know, one key defining difference btw AS and ASD is the former has no history of speech delay and difficulties acquiring language.

Children with other disabilities may exhibit some of the above symptoms. eg conduct disorder (anger, aggression), obsessive compulsive personality, learning disabilities


I was first trained as an educational therapist, ie I work mainly with children with Learning Disability (LD). I was initially surprised to see young kids with LD labelled as having ASD and AS. The older ones that I saw then were simply labelled 'slow' or having learning difficulties.

I think the issue is LD is not very well-known in Singapore. Many children with LD have social skills difficulties (but much milder than ASD and AS), anger mgt issues, motor skills difficulties. Some may have sensory processing difficulties. They generally don't stim. They may be "rigid", preferring sameness as they don't cope well with change. Even when they have a favourite topic/obsession, they show it differently. Yes, some are gifted too.

Flu-like symptoms can mean flu, H1N1, dengue or some obscure low probability disease, right? Same goes for poor social skills.

I've given up explaining the difference btw ASD and LD & why our centre focuses on treatment as it entails challenging someone else's diagnosis. When the child has "recovered", I ask parents to consider having their child re-diagnosed.

There are many childhood disorders that many laypersons do not know of. Unfortunately, many practitioners, including myself, don't know enough too. I'd rather focus on helping the child based on his needs.

mango
YellowBelt
YellowBelt
Posts: 29
Joined: Fri Aug 01,

Post by mango » Mon Dec 06, 2010 6:12 pm

[quote="EN"]
Is his behaviour really bad that you are worried it will impact his relationship with peers, friends & family that it warrants a diagnosis?
[\quote]
Thanks for your reply. Yes, his behaviour does affect his relationship
with his classmates. When his teacher told me that he has no friends
in class, I am not really bothered cos I see that he is generally in good spirits when we drop him off at school every morning. It is only during the last week of school, by chance taht I realised that his classmates are acting quite hostile towards him.


- Social awkwardness / no friends
he is being described as "not into situation".
- Obsessions / focused on one subject
yes
- Slow to begin talking
talks at 3, skip one word phase.
- Odd speech / extreme logic / very proper speech
very proper speech, like to find explanation for everything.
- Anger / aggression / hitting others
yes, hit out on his classmates and FT called me up several times.
at one stage, he has been staying back for recess almost everyday.
- Craves ROUTINE!
not really but if there is a change in routine, he will need an explanation.
- Appears lost / in own world
he can be very focused on things he enjoyed, oblivious of the surronding.
- Communication problems or motor skills problems
take words literally, cannot joke with him as he tends to takes them seriously. sent him to gym lessons and instructor asked if he is a special needs child.

[quote] Even with diagnosis, there's not much help available in Singapore. The label just help me to understand what to look out for and to understand him better. [\quote]
As you have said, diagnosis is not going to help so I am NOT sending him for a diagnosis. This thread has certainly helped in my understanding of his behaviour. Right now, my main concern is to help him to improve his oscial skills.

EN
KiasuGrandMaster
KiasuGrandMaster
Posts: 1108
Joined: Mon Jul 07,

Post by EN » Mon Dec 13, 2010 1:15 am

Hello Mango

If you don't mind me asking, what kind of social skills do you think your child needs help in?

I'm not an expert but I do try to be around and watch my child/children interact with other kids. Will step in & address my child/children privately of the do's and dont's.

By the way, the diagnosis does help me in understanding the joy and frustration of raising an asperger child. Since it might be genetic, if one day he has his own children with the same traits, it will ease the tension between him and his wife. Eg like, minimal sleep as compared to other babies of the same age, sensitivities, extremely picky eater (never to mix food on the plate) & the need for sticking to schedules (otherwise, this baby will wail non-stop).

The doctor has also informed me that asperger are usually good with logical subjects like math and science. So those, are the subjects that I know he can do very well with minimal help. Because of the diagnosis, his class seat is to be away from the window due to sun light glare (sensitivity of light) and nature sound (can be very distracting to someone with acute sense of hearing).

Teachers will allow him to talk and ask questions outside classroom on things that he likes to talk, like black hole, some science factuals that he wants to know. Got him to assist on AVA and elect him to be in science competition.

So, in a way, the diagnosis helps to understand him better, teacher makes way to allow him to engage in activities that he likes. So at least he is looking forward to go to school daily. No friends to understand his interest, there's teachers that he can talk and turn to.

So, it's something for you to ponder. To diagnose or not to.

partime-mum
OrangeBelt
OrangeBelt
Posts: 43
Joined: Thu Sep 02,

Post by partime-mum » Tue Dec 14, 2010 4:31 pm

Hi Mango,

It also breaks my heart when DS is shunned by classmates. I have seen DS trying to strike up conversation with other children or join other children playing at playground, but he is usually unsuccessfully. :cry:

DH was not very supportive of me sending DS for assessment, especially assessment by private doctor. He thought I was over-sensitive. He is worried abt the cost of therapy as well as DS will be label for life.

DS has been attending therapy (speech & occupational) at Child Development Unit since 2nd qtr of Yr2010. I see him puting his best effort when the therapist give him some tasks. Going with DS for therapy session really helps as I learn from the therapist his weakness, his strength, the better way to motivate him and get his attention to focus on tasks.

After each therapy session, I will brief my DH and maid on the recommended activities and "best practices". My DH, upon seeing DS improvements, starts to agree that therapy should be continued.

DS will be in K2 next yr and is currently on wait list for the social group therapy. According to the therapist, this kind of social group therapy is for 6 kids of the same conditions to play together for 4 hrs (with therapist), consecutive 5 days. Parents will be in the next room to watch them, with another therapist teaching us the ways to guide their play.

I think therapy helps us to understand and guide him better.

iikengkeng
OrangeBelt
OrangeBelt
Posts: 40
Joined: Thu Oct 14,

Post by iikengkeng » Sat Dec 18, 2010 2:06 pm

I am helping a friend to look for social interaction class for her girl, aged 13, suspected of Asperger's. Her girl has been isolated by classmates and has eye-contact problem.

Any recommendation? if not convenient to post here, plse pm me.
Thank you.

Post Reply