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Does my Child have Autism or Asperger’s Syndrome?

autism or asperger's disease

Medically reviewed by Dr. Muhammad Ashraf Shera.

If there is one thing that’s more important than anything in the world to a parent, it’s the health of their child. They take a sigh of relief as soon as they hear their newborn cry, or when their child takes their first step or speak their first words.

For a child suffering from autism, it’s quite different. Their first steps will be as normal as any other kid, but when it comes to communicating, analyzing and behaving, they are all differently abled.

Autism, however, is a part of the autism spectrum disorders which consists of other different and some-what similar diseases. Asperger’s syndrome is one commonly misunderstood example. So, if you see your child behaving differently than other children, but they still don’t fit the perfect definition of an autistic, this article might help you a great deal.

What makes these two similar?

Because there are a lot of similar behavioral traits between the two diseases, they are often confused with one another.

  • The victims of both autism and Asperger’s crave isolation. They tend to shut others out, disregard contact and have a hard time relating to people and situations in ordinary ways.
  • With having little understanding of jokes and puns, they only think literally and are unable to comprehend witty jokes.
  • The display of their happy moods is always exaggerated, however infrequent.
  • They tend to lack the expression of feelings, intentions, and desires that are normally typical in communications. When it comes to language, they don’t use it to connect with other people, but to engage with themselves.
  • Such people are resistant to change and are always seen engaged in repetitive activities, hand flapping being the most common.


How are they different?

Apart from many similarities between the two diseases, the three most notable differences separate them from one another.

  • Asperger’s syndrome is hardly ever identified at young age, unlike autism which is noticeable within two years of age when persistent failure to engage with people is observed. For a kid with Asperger’s, it only starts becoming apparent when they enter school and have extreme difficulty socializing.
  • Speech is a major differing factor. While autistic children have both a hard time comprehending sounds and languages as means of communication and experience language delay, those with Asperger’s have their speech intact. They, however, do find it difficult to communicate which is apparent from them not making proper eye contact.
  • Compared to classic autism, the IQs of those with Asperger’s fall within the normal, sometimes even the superior range. If you have seen Sheldon Cooper from ‘The Big Bang Theory’ or Shahrukh Khan from ‘My name is Khan’, they are the classic examples of it.

Every child with an autism spectrum disorder is different and it’s not likely for all of them to show all of the symptoms. It may even become hard to distinguish high functioning autism from Asperger’s in some cases. Therefore, if you are confused, seek professional help along with understanding the distinguishing features mentioned above.

Guest Post Credit: Dr. Maleeha Syed



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