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Diagnosing Autism *please help* very long *sorry*

Posted by on Jan. 3, 2010 at 11:35 AM
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Hello everyone, I haven't been on cafemom in almost two years but have decided to return becuase my now three year old son is showing so many signs of autism. I'm not really sure what it is or I never even knew about it until I so a show on TLC about a family with  think 5 autistic children.

Since my son was about 16 months I noticed a big decrease in his developmental skills, as in he started to use words at about 10 months and was learning to point and name some body parts and learn to use words to request things he wanted and to resond to certain commands. When he was an infant he was always about 4 months ahead on the developmental test at the dr's office. Then when he hit the 16-18 month mark I noticed a huge decline in his language skills and comprehension of language too. I countinuosly questioned his Dr about my concerns and he would just look over them and say that nothing was wrong and basically that i was over reacting.

By the time Kaleb turned 2 he had lost all language skills and started to show signs of what I thought was ADHD. He started to run back and forth all day long, clap his hands repetitively when he would get upset, he would spin any object that was spinnable or try to spin even those that weren't. For example we bought him a tricycle and instead of riding it he would turn it over and spin the wheels for hours. I explained all this to his Dr and finally he suggested that Kaleb get a hearing evaluation. Well after 10 months of hearing evals, 1 sugery to place tubes in his ears, and 1 year of speech and developmental therapy, Kaleb is still almost exactly the same speech wise as he when he was 2.  About 2 months before he turned 3 his speech therapist brought up the austism concern to me. While I had already run the idea through my mind I was afraid to initiate it with his therapist or Dr because I didnt want to seem like i was trying to lable him I guest. Now I've stop bringing up the issue with his Dr and I've started to kind of take things into my own hands so he's been accepted into the IEP preschool program at the elementary school in our area where they will conduct his autism evaluation.

sorry this is so long but I'm just very lost in all of this. I, like any parent want the best for my child and I want to get him all the help he needs. I just want to know everyone's experiences here like when did you first see signs and how did you know?? Were your child's pediatrician's more helpful and concerned or did they just look over it? What kind of help is available for it?

Some signs of austism that kaleb shows are:

lost of language, non responsive to his name or whats going on around him, shows little no interest in other children, (every time I've picked him up from daycare he's off playing by himself), he show's repetitive* movement like running back and forth and clapping his hands, he also will hit himself (either his head or stomch), he has started to bite people, he's very picky about what he eats, he hates to have clothes on, but has to have on shoes, he would have fits if someone was to remove his shoes, also whenever i try to dress him in royal blue he throws a fit, there are also other things that make me wonder about austism. Are these all things that your children do and go through?? PLEASE HELP ME

 

    

 

 

by on Jan. 3, 2010 at 11:35 AM
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Replies (1-10):
Aidansmom213
by Member on Jan. 3, 2010 at 5:29 PM

My son has aspergers and shows many many of those symptoms. (exept for losing his language) he runs back and forth clapping and flapping ( it's called stimming) I wouldn't have the time to put all the same things down that our kids have in common( a little busy right now) but I would put money on your child being somewhere on the autism spectrum. Don't be afraid,we are here for you.

Pweek
by Member on Jan. 3, 2010 at 5:59 PM

In the middle of getting dinner ready, but I will email you this evening.

mom4fun
by Bronze Member on Jan. 3, 2010 at 8:00 PM

I think we've all been where you are.  I would definately have him evaluated, but what you're describing could be somewhere on the autism spectrum.  My son is ten now, back then doctors were not helpful in diagnosing autism.  I believe that it is different now.  But most school districts can test and give you a preliminary diagnosis, which may help with the doctor.  The most important thing is getting him the services he needs, which can be done through the school.

My son was evaluated through the school and admitted into the special needs preschool.  I immediately put him on the gluten free casein free diet, which helped him immensely.  We continued special needs preschool and began seeing an Integrative Health Doctor which helped me with suppliements and dietary needs.  I attended therapies and worked with him at home.  As the years progress, I evaluate what his needs are and address them as they come.  For example, the public school system  in our area is not very good for kids on the spectrum once they leave preschool, so I've put him in a school that knows how he learns and he is progressing very well, academically.  We have him in a social skills group that assists him with learning sthose skills.  We've done sensory therapies, speech, and occupational therapy as needed. 

Best of Luck and don't forget you're not alone!

aidasabina
by on Jan. 3, 2010 at 8:03 PM

Hi,

I have a similar sorry with my 3 year old Dylan.  He lost speech at about 14 months, which correlated with a series of ear infections.  So our pediatrician chalked it up to his ears and just after his 2nd birthday we had the tubes put in.  We also did a year of speech therapy, and nothing. It was while trying to place him in school before doing the IEP that they suggested a neurologist see him and he diagnosed the autism.  My son also is a very picky eater, covered his ears, was obsessed with his trains and wheels, turned the tricycle upside-down, to name a few...  

I always took solace in the fact that he was in speech therapy and that if he was autistic the therapist would know and tell me.  Well, I later found out that speech therapists are not trained to make that diagnosis and could not.

I want to say, 'don't be scared', but come on... no one wants this.  What I do have to say, as that if he does get diagnosed, that opens the door to a lot of different help and therapy.  I also do biomedical therapy that has helped tremendously.

Good luck to you.  There are wonderful boards on cafemom for parents of autistic children.  They really provide help, support and friendship.

Take care

Aida

Max and Dylan's Mombutterfly

Panopel
by Member on Jan. 3, 2010 at 8:45 PM

My sons doctor was more helpful then it sounds like yours is being, but I knew before the doctor thought there was a problem that he had autism. I knew for over a year before he got an official diagnoses.

aidasabina
by on Jan. 3, 2010 at 9:01 PM

...I forgot to mention in my previous message that in just the last 4 months since Dylan's diagnosis he has gone from completely non-verbal to having over 150 words in his vocabulary, he also has finally started interacting with kids - unfortunately he shoves them and laughs hysteracally but we'll work on that, and his tummy issues are so much better.  So, kids with autism do get better and recover with our love and dedication.  Don't feel hopeless.  -Aida

Max and Dylan's Mombutterfly

Amy4045
by New Member on Jan. 3, 2010 at 9:10 PM

My son is now 14 yrs old. I started noticing signs of his autism around 14 months or so. He was making no effort what so ever to learn to walk. He would stand but not walk at all. Not even around furniture. He played with his toys normally, he slept normally, he ate normally. Really it was just his lack of effort in trying to learn to walk. He had little vocabulary but was loving with me, kisses and hugs all the time. Eye contact was good. 

At his 18 mth appt my doctor said she was noticing signs herself. She sent us to a specialist the very next day. He was diagnosed immediately and put into therapy. He went to therapy 3 times per week and has been basically "in school" ever since then. He is involved in life skills classes. And *gasp* he will be in highschool next year. I am scared to death! Its been a long hard journey. I was a single mother at the time of his diagnosis. But I always remind myself that for how hard it is for me, its got to be 100 times harder to be Bryce! 

mstricey
by Member on Jan. 3, 2010 at 10:31 PM

That is wonderful to hear. When I first started to learn about autism I was so afraid that he would be this dependant, helpless child. Now that I've heard some of you all's stories it really gives me hope that he can overcome this, atleast enough to have a normal childhood, be a typical teenager and an independant adult

Quoting aidasabina:

...I forgot to mention in my previous message that in just the last 4 months since Dylan's diagnosis he has gone from completely non-verbal to having over 150 words in his vocabulary, he also has finally started interacting with kids - unfortunately he shoves them and laughs hysteracally but we'll work on that, and his tummy issues are so much better.  So, kids with autism do get better and recover with our love and dedication.  Don't feel hopeless.  -Aida


    

 

 

mstricey
by Member on Jan. 3, 2010 at 10:36 PM

The fact that kaleb is very affectionate towards me made me kind of wonder that it wasn't autism. He for the most part is very loving towards me and giving kisses and hugs and follows me around everywhere. Then there are days that he would rather not be touched or messed with. Is that typical for a child with autism?

Quoting Amy4045:

My son is now 14 yrs old. I started noticing signs of his autism around 14 months or so. He was making no effort what so ever to learn to walk. He would stand but not walk at all. Not even around furniture. He played with his toys normally, he slept normally, he ate normally. Really it was just his lack of effort in trying to learn to walk. He had little vocabulary but was loving with me, kisses and hugs all the time. Eye contact was good. 

At his 18 mth appt my doctor said she was noticing signs herself. She sent us to a specialist the very next day. He was diagnosed immediately and put into therapy. He went to therapy 3 times per week and has been basically "in school" ever since then. He is involved in life skills classes. And *gasp* he will be in highschool next year. I am scared to death! Its been a long hard journey. I was a single mother at the time of his diagnosis. But I always remind myself that for how hard it is for me, its got to be 100 times harder to be Bryce! 


    

 

 

nicola83078
by New Member on Jan. 3, 2010 at 11:20 PM

My son is 6 and has done about everything you have described with your experiences. He has also done a lot more. He is still obsessed with the numbers 14 and 22. Television volume, cars, trains, etc.  Holds down his ears, hits himself in the face, pulls on his cheeks. His toys also need to be catogorized by color. Shoelace bows need to be the same size and socks have to be equally as high. I could go on for hours. My son was diagnosed with Aspergers at age 3 1/2.  I felt like things started to change with him about  the same age you mentioned. I honestly thought he was just extremely intelegent for his age. This was also before he started to hurt himself. One of my good friends was over for lunch one day. She just so happens to be a special ed teacher. She started playing with him and almost immediatly asked me if I ever heard of Asperger's Syndrome. At the time I did not. She gave me lots of info to go over and suggested I talk to his pediatrician. After monitoring by doing behavior charts and daily journals I would bring these to his monthly check up appts. After about a year is when I recieved the diagnoses. I had to be VERY persistant. The pediatrician would tell me he was okay at first.  You know your child, you are with them daily and know when the slightest thing is off with them. We as mom's just know. Things have gotten a little easier for us now. I had to learn how to change me to help him, not  to change him. If you ever need someone to talk to I am here for you. My heart goes out to you. Children on the spectrum are a wonderful gift. God only blesses strong women with these children, he knows we can handle it!    Nicola

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