HELP FOR PARENTS OF CHILDREN WITH ASPERGER'S & HIGH-FUNCTIONING AUTISM

Education and Counseling for Individuals Affected by Autism Spectrum Disorders

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Aspergers CAST Test

The Aspergers CAST Test for kids is a test that will enable moms and dads to have a better sense of what the criteria for Aspergers looks like. For some of you, it will settle your nerves, for others, you will now have a better sense of what's going on with your youngster, enabling you to make appropriate choices with a better idea of where her/his challenges lay.

Read the following questions carefully, and choose the appropriate answer:

1. Does he/she join in playing games with others easily?
Y
N

2. Does he/she come up to you spontaneously for a chat?
Y
N

3. Was he/she speaking by 2 years old?
Y
N

4. Does he/she enjoy sports?
Y
N

5. Is it important for him/her to fit in with a peer group?
Y
N

6. Does he/she appear to notice unusual details that others miss?
Y
N

7. Does he/she tend to take things literally?
Y
N

8. When he/she was 3 years old, did he/she spend a lot of time pretending (e.g., play-acting being a super-hero, or holding teddy's tea parties?
Y
N

9. Does he/she like to do the same things over and over again, in the same way all the time?
Y
N

10. Does he/she find it easy to interact with other children?
Y
N

11. Can he/she keep a two-way conversation going?
Y
N

12. Can he/she read appropriately for his/her age?
Y
N

13. Does he/she mostly have the same interests as his/her peers?
Y
N

14. Does he/she have an interest that which takes up so much time that he/she does little else?
Y
N

15. Does he/she have friends, rather than just acquaintances?
Y
N

16. Does he/she often bring things to show you that interest him/her?
Y
N

17. Does he/she enjoy joking around?
Y
N

18. Does he/she have difficulty understanding the rules for polite behavior?
Y
N

19. Does he/she have an unusual memory for details?
Y
N

20. Is his/her voice unusual (e.g., overly adult, flat, or very monotonous?
Y
N

21. Are people important to him/her?
Y
N

22. Can he/she dress him/herself?
Y
N

23. Is he/she good at turn-taking in conversation?
Y
N

24. Does he/she play imaginatively with other children, and engage in role-play?
Y
N

25. Does he/she do or say things that are tactless or socially inappropriate?
Y
N

26. Can he/she count to 50 without leaving out any numbers?
Y
N

27. Does he/she make normal eye-contact?
Y
N

28. Does he/she have any unusual and repetitive movements?
Y
N

29. Is his/her social behavior very one-sided and always on his or her terms?
Y
N

30. Does your child sometimes say "you" or "he/she" when he/she means to say "I"?
Y
N

31. Does he/she prefer imaginative activities such as play-acting or story-telling, rather than numbers or a list of facts?
Y
N

32. Does he/she sometimes lose the listener because of not explaining what he/she is talking about?
Y
N

33. Can he/she ride a bicycle (even if with stabilizers)?
Y
N

34. Does he/she try to impose routines on himself/herself, or on others, in such a way that it causes problems?
Y
N

35. Does he/she care about how he/she is perceived by the rest of the group?
Y
N

36. Does he/she often turn conversations to his/her favorite subject rather than following what the other person wants to talk about?
Y
N

37. Does he/she have odd or unusual phrases?
Y
N

38. Have teachers ever expressed any concerns about his/her development?
Y
N
If Y, please specify___________________________________

39. Has he/she ever been diagnosed with the following?

• Language delay
Y
N

• Hyperactivity/Attention Deficit Disorder (ADHD)
Y
N

• Hearing or visual difficulties?
Y
N

• Autism Spectrum Condition, including Aspergers?
Y
N

• A physical disability?
Y
N

• Other? (please specify
Y
N
If Y, please specify___________________________________

The Aspergers Comprehensive Handbook

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hi, my name is Siobhan and I am the mom to Anthony, age nearly 7, who was diagnosed over the summer by Kennedy Krieger with Asperger's and Anxiety. His aspergers is pretty mild and he has exhibited anxiety since birth.

The major issue we are having are his random burst of violent behavior towards other kids - often out of nowhere, with no seeming trigger event. He often likes the kids he hits.

He has been kicked out of his summer camp and is no longer allowed to play with some neighbor children because the parents do not feel their kids are safe. His after school center wants us to pay for a shadow for him to make sure he is always supervised after he hit three kids in one day for no reason.

He denies having done it afterward and gets very very upset. He has no explanation of why he does it - when pressed, he'll make something up (she hit me first!) or deny it happened.

This occurs in front of other people - he once poked a kid he didn't even know in the eye who was passing him on the stairs for no reason right in front of me. He was even smiling while doing it -not a nasty smile but a "hey look what I can do" smile.

Now, here is the thing. He doesn't lack empathy. He reads faces well, and gets upset if someone he cares about is upset. He cares a lot of he thinks I or someone else is angry at him.

And he does sometimes have angry outbursts in reaction to being told no. I am very familiar with those; this is different. IN the cases I am referring to, there is rarely ANY anger displayed at all; in fact, he often has a smile on his face and he is in his own world.

We are at a loss. All the research I have done is based on kids hitting for a reason - their space was encroached or they want their way. This out of nowhere hitting is just not mentioned.

I have spoken to our play therapist he has been seeing for social skills therapy, and I spoke to the psychiatrist at Kennedy Krieger, as well as the special ed staff at his school, and they all offer the same "rewards/consequences" model, which I feel in my gut doesn't work for this specific problem. The kid is punished SEVERELY when this sort of behavior occurs and we are very consistant about it. We also try hard when he is calm to make him understand and own the consequences for his behavior. But it doesn't seem to make a difference, at least not with this behavior (for other behaviors where there seems to be more cognition, it does work).

My child has been rejected by his peers, ridiculed and bullied !!!

Social rejection has devastating effects in many areas of functioning. Because the Aspergers child tends to internalize how others treat him, rejection damages self-esteem and often causes anxiety and depression. As the child feels worse about himself and becomes more anxious and depressed – he performs worse, socially and intellectually. Thus, the best treatment for Aspergers children and teens is, without a doubt, “social skills training.”

Click here to read the full article…

How to Prevent Meltdowns in Aspergers Children

Meltdowns are not a pretty sight. They are somewhat like overblown temper tantrums, but unlike tantrums, meltdowns can last anywhere from ten minutes to over an hour. When it starts, the Asperger's child is totally out-of-control. When it ends, both you and the Asperger’s child are totally exhausted. But... don’t breathe a sigh of relief yet. At the least provocation, for the remainder of that day -- and sometimes into the next - the meltdown can return in full force.

Click here for the full article...

Parenting Defiant Aspergers Teens

Although Aspergers is at the milder end of the autism spectrum, the challenges parents face when disciplining a teenager with Aspergers are more difficult than they would be with an average teen. Complicated by defiant behavior, the Aspergers teen is at risk for even greater difficulties on multiple levels – unless the parents’ disciplinary techniques are tailored to their child's special needs.

Click here to read the full article…

Aspergers Children “Block-Out” Their Emotions

Parenting children with Aspergers and HFA can be a daunting task. In layman’s terms, Aspergers is a developmental disability that affects the way children develop and understand the world around them, and is directly linked to their senses and sensory processing. This means they often use certain behaviors to block out their emotions or response to pain.

Click here to read the full article…

Older Teens and Young Adult Children With Aspergers Still Living At Home

Your older teenager or young “adult child” isn’t sure what to do, and he is asking you for money every few days. How do you cut the purse strings and teach him to be independent? Parents of teens with Aspergers face many problems that other parents do not. Time is running out for teaching their adolescent how to become an independent adult. As one mother put it, "There's so little time, yet so much left to do."

Click here to read the full article…

Living with an Aspergers Spouse/Partner

Research reveals that the divorce rate for people with Aspergers is around 80%. Why so high!? The answer may be found in how the symptoms of Aspergers affect intimate relationships. People with Aspergers often find it difficult to understand others and express themselves. They may seem to lose interest in people over time, appear aloof, and are often mistaken as self-centered, vain individuals.

Click here to read the full article…

Online Parent Coaching for Parents of Asperger's Children

If you’re the parent of a child with Aspergers or High-Functioning Autism, you know it can be a struggle from time to time. Your child may be experiencing: obsessive routines; problems coping in social situations; intense tantrums and meltdowns; over-sensitivity to sounds, tastes, smells and sights; preoccupation with one subject of interest; and being overwhelmed by even the smallest of changes. The hardest part is you feel like you’ll never actually get to know your child and how he/she views the world.

Click here to read the full article...

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