Approximately 20 to 80% of children with autism have the physical features associated with autism. Several behavioral and educational interventions are known to be effective for treating autism. Behavioral modifications, physical and occupational therapies, speech and language interventions, and parent training are also effective. In many cases, the diagnosis of autism is not apparent until a child has been diagnosed. The following article discusses autism, Down syndrome, and Fragile X syndrome. Read on to learn more.
Autism spectrum disorder
Children with autism often exhibit symptoms in early childhood, although they can develop the condition later in life. The first signs of autism in children usually involve difficulties with social interaction, sensitivity to sensory input, and communication. Children with autism may display mild or severe symptoms, depending on their severity. Early diagnosis and intervention are critical to improving a child's quality of life and functioning in society. In fact, one in every fifty-four children is diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder.
A specialized evaluation is often required by schools and insurance companies, and most professionals will hedge on diagnosis. However, having a diagnosis may make a child more likely to receive the help they need and lead a fulfilling life. The good news is that many patients find relief from receiving the proper diagnosis. However, if a diagnosis is not made immediately, further evaluation may be necessary, resulting in a more precise and useful treatment plan.
In addition to conventional treatment, autism-related therapies have proven beneficial for children with the disorder. One of these approaches is called TEACCH, or the Treatment of Autism Spectrum Disorder. TEACCH utilizes visual cues to teach skills such as dressing, and breaking complex information into smaller steps. Some people find relief from the symptoms of ASD through complementary and alternative medicine, also known as CAM. The goal of TEACCH is to help children learn and manage symptoms of autism.
In human beings, both parents pass on their genes through the mother's womb. Normally, each cell should have 23 pairs of chromosomes - half from the mother and half from the father. When one of these chromosomes is missing, the result is a condition known as Down syndrome. A child with Down syndrome has three copies of chromosome 21 instead of one. While the other two chromosomes are normal, the extra chromosome 21 is what causes the disorder.
While the motor development of a child with Down syndrome is often delayed, this condition does not impair the child's social performance. While motor development is a priority, the disorder may also interfere with cognitive development. Moreover, poor oral motor control can negatively impact a child's ability to speak. Specific delays in non-verbal understanding and language are common in children with Down syndrome. However, expressive language is a struggle for almost all children with Down syndrome. They will experience two distinct types of expressive difficulties: delayed mastery of grammar and specific difficulty in developing clear speech.
In some cases, Down syndrome can cause severe physical problems, like heart defects. While minor heart problems can be treated with medicines, major heart defects may need surgical correction. In cases of seizures, hypothyroidism, and childhood leukemia, medications are used to treat the condition. Sometimes, surgery is necessary for intestinal or upper-neck abnormalities. Many children with Down syndrome also have digestive problems. If a child is born with Down syndrome, there are specialized doctors who can help them cope with these conditions.
Fragile X syndrome
A child with Fragile X syndrome has a variety of unique challenges. In addition to the physical challenges, children may also have behavioral issues, including temper tantrums and other difficulties. Early diagnosis is crucial to help a child with Fragile X syndrome meet their full potential. Parents should schedule a screening for their child before they begin school, and if their child shows signs of development delay, such as delays in speech and language, intellectual disability, or learning problems, they should consult a paediatrician.
A child with Fragile X may have behavioral problems or difficulty paying attention. He may also experience attention problems or hyperactivity. Typically, a Fragile X boy may stutter or leave out parts of words. He may have a slow start in talking, and may remain nonverbal throughout his life. Males may also experience issues with their testicles after puberty. However, their cognitive abilities may be normal.
A gene called FMR1 causes Fragile X, and it affects nearly every ethnic group in the world. The mutation occurs in the FMR1 gene, which normally makes a protein called FMRP. This protein is important for the function of brain cells and other tissues, so its absence results in symptoms of Fragile X syndrome. Because some individuals with Fragile X have a broken X chromosome, it was given the name fragile X syndrome.
Specific language impairment
Specific language impairment (SLI) is a neurological disorder that interferes with a child's ability to learn language. It affects speech, reading, writing, and listening. It also has many other names, including developmental language disorder, language delay, and dysphasia. It affects approximately 7 percent of kindergarten-aged children, and persists into adulthood. The disorder is a serious cause of limited social and economic potential.
The symptoms of DLD vary greatly between individuals, but the problem typically persists throughout the child's life. Most children with DLD will show improvement by the time they reach early elementary school. Early on, their deficits are more general than specific, and tend to be limited to morphosyntax. By age five, children with DLD exhibited milder language impairments than their peers. While their production abilities were generally higher than those of their peers, they had trouble forming and maintaining complex sentences. Children with DLD usually retained errors in morphological usage longer than their peers.
While DLD is an overarching diagnosis for children with developmental language disorder, it is often misunderstood as a subset of autism spectrum disorders or Down syndrome. It should not be confused with autism spectrum disorder, though, as both diagnoses can occur simultaneously. Rather, the diagnosis should be based on the severity of the child's language problems. Although this disorder is often associated with other disabilities, it is still relatively common amongst children.
An intellectual disability is a type of developmental disorder marked by impediments to a person's ability to process information and perform daily functions. These limitations generally appear during childhood but may also develop at a later age. Many causes of ID can be traced back to genetics, prenatal illness, trauma, or inadequate nutrition. While ID is most often mild, it is important to note that it can range from moderate to severe, making early detection crucial to a person's overall well-being.
The most common type of intellectual disability is Fragile X syndrome, which results from a mutation of the X chromosome. This disorder results in a range of symptoms, including developmental delay, intellectual disability, communication difficulties, anxiety, and poor eye contact. About 1 in every 3,600 boys and 4,000-6,000 girls develop this disorder. Although this condition does not affect all children with ASD, it does affect many more children and their families.
As with any disorder, intellectual disabilities vary in intensity. The majority of cases of intellectual disability are mild and require minimal or no support. The intensity of a developmental disability is traditionally defined by a score on a standardized aptitude test, which is not very sensitive to daily social functioning. However, current trends define intensity according to the level of support required. Table 13 summarizes the most common schemes. In general, an intellectual disability will require some level of support, and it should not be viewed as a sign of weakness or incapacity.
A child who is developing slower than other children usually has a neurological disorder called cerebral palsy. This disorder is characterized by problems with movement and muscle tone. Physical examinations can reveal signs of cerebral palsy, but a complete evaluation will require a visit to a developmental specialist, neurologist, or a developmental psychologist. A child with cerebral palsy may have a delayed onset of speech or language, or a slower-than-normal rate of growth.
The cause of cerebral palsy is still not fully understood, but scientists believe that the disorder is a result of a traumatic brain injury during pregnancy. Brain development normally reaches its fullest at around age eight, but if there is a brain injury during fetal development, the result is a clinical picture resembling that of an adult. Scientists collect DNA samples from people with cerebral palsy to identify specific genes associated with the disorder.
There are three different types of cerebral palsy. Each form has specific symptoms. These symptoms can be hemiplegic, diplegic, or entire body. Sometimes a child has only one type of cerebral palsy. If your child is experiencing hemiplegic symptoms, this disorder will most likely result in ataxia. Symptoms may include spasticity, stiffness, and a lack of coordination.
Sensory-related developmental disabilities
Sensory-related developmental disabilities are conditions in which the brain fails to properly interpret sensory information and convert it into appropriate motor and behavioral responses. This causes a person to experience overwhelming feelings in certain environments, such as loud noises or being in a crowded space. Thankfully, therapies and treatment are available to help the person experience the world around them in a more normal manner. But, what is sensory processing disorder? What can it do for your child?
The first symptom is a child's sensitivity to sensory input. If this is not developed appropriately, a child may experience a wide range of symptoms. These symptoms include under or over-responsiveness to certain stimuli, difficulty concentrating, and frequent fatigue. Many children with sensory-related developmental disabilities also experience problems with gross motor coordination, which leads to speech/language delays and academic underachievement. Some children with sensory-related developmental disabilities have difficulty adapting to new situations and may be easily distracted.
There are two types of sensory issues in children: hyposensitive and hypersensitive. Hyposensitive kids need more sensory stimulation and are easily overwhelmed by strong sensations. On the other hand, hypersensitive children are oversensitive and are overly irritated by strong sensory stimulation. A child with sensory-related developmental disabilities can become agitated or upset by a change in environment. A calm child in a dark car may have a tantrum if suddenly taken into a bright grocery store.