Autism Spectrum Disorder -


Autism spectrum disorder, also referred to as the autistic spectrum, is the idea that autism is a developmental and behavioral syndrome resulting from certain combinations of traits. Though these traits can be normally distributed in the population, some individuals tend to inherit and even manifest them more than others. At the severe end of spectrum is low-functioning autism that has profound impairments in many areas, to Asperger's syndrome and high-functioning autism, to normal behavior and also sometimes hyper-socialization on the high end of the spectrum.

In the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders and International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems, autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is classified as a pervasive developmental disorders, as opposed to specific developmental disorders like dyspraxia or dyslexia.

Autistic Spectrum Traits -
Behaviorally, it is seen that certain characteristics are identified amongst people with autism spectrum disorder. The number of autistic traits present in the individual determines the severity of autism. Autistic traits can sometimes be beneficial in some disciplines like science, mathematics and engineering. The traits can be studied under four sections -

Social impairment
Under social impairment, an autistic shows a lack of observed desire for friendship, poor ability to make friends and social awkwardness. He is also seen to have indiscriminate social interaction, lack of eye contact, brief response to questions and gullibility.

Language impairment
Under language impairment, an autistic shows odd or monotonous prosody of speech, overly formal and pedantic language and pronoun reversal. His prefers visuospatial thinking and makes use of rote chunks of language. Sometimes an autistic can show late or no development of language and poor use and understanding of nonverbal communication like facial expressions and body language.

Imaginative impairment and repetitive adherence
An autistic spectrum also shows some imaginative impairment and repetitive adherence under which he/she makes concrete and literal use of language. There is poor understanding of abstract thought, metaphors, and symbolism.

Sensory integration dysfunction
An autistic spectrum shows sensory integration dysfunction like hyper- or hyposensitivity of the various senses, peculiar clothing and food preferences, self-stimulating mannerisms and fine or gross motor dis-coordination.

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Autism
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