Asperger’s Syndrome: Symptoms, Causes, and Management

Photo by: Bigstockphoto
Photo by: Bigstockphoto

Asperger’s Syndrome – also known as Asperger disorder – is a type of pervasive developmental disorder (PDD). It belongs to the autism spectrum disorder. This condition is characterized by difficulty in social interaction and non-verbal communication. A person suffering from Asperger syndrome will perform repeated patterns of behavior and interests. Children living with this condition will have near-normal language development and normal intelligence. However, as they get older, they will struggle to communicate or use their imagination.

Unfortunately, this condition is incurable. But it’s possible for people afflicted with this condition to live a relatively normal life.

Signs and Symptoms of Asperger’s syndrome

The signs and symptoms of Asperger’s syndrome will vary from mild to severe. The most common signs of this condition are the struggle to socialize with others. Those who are born with Asperger’s syndrome won’t make friends easily. They cannot maintain a conversation for long. They will develop odd, repetitive habits such as hand wringing.

A child afflicted with this condition will also exhibit certain patterns of developing rituals that he or she does not want to change or doing things in a specific order. They will refuse to make eye contact and will have problems understanding language, taking everything in a literal way. Kids with Asperger’s syndrome will exhibit almost obsessive interest in certain areas or may move awkwardly.

Causes of Asperger’s Syndrome

There is no known cause of Asperger’s. However, this condition is hereditary. It can be passed from parent to child. It’s certainly a unique disorder.

Managing Asperger’s Syndrome

For children afflicted with Asperger’s syndrome, they can be homeschooled by a professional who specializes in meeting the patient’s unique educational needs. They can go through therapies to minimize problematic behaviors and improve functional abilities.

A psychologist can also help give counsel and valuable support to the child. A therapist can also teach the child non-verbal cues. To reduce anxiety, a patient may be prescribed the same medications used to treat depression, hyperactivity or obsessive compulsive behaviors.

Although this condition cannot be prevented nor treated, early diagnosis helps correct or manage behavioral problems.

Living with Asperger’s Syndrome

Living with Asperger’s syndrome has its challenges. Because this condition is incurable, treatment is focused on reducing undesirable behaviors and improving communication. Below are tips to improve the quality of your life:

Educate Yourself

Know more about your condition. From here, you will get an idea how normal people communicate, as well as non-verbal cues they use to maintain the natural flow of the conversation. Know the difference and adjust accordingly.

Finding a Support Group

1 in 250 kids is afflicted with this condition. Though it’s a rare condition, you can find solace in support groups. Surround yourself with people who are familiar with the same struggles you face every day. A support group will help you maintain normalcy.

Consult a Therapist

It’s important for Aspergers to consult a therapist or psychiatrist to correct problematic behavior and overcome this condition. A professional can present a treatment plan to help you live a relatively normal life. A therapist can also help you develop social skills and practice different ways to communicate in social situations.

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