Aspergers Teens Talk About Their Struggles

Teens with Aspergers Talk About Their Life-Challenges: Your older teenager or young “adult child” isn’t sure where he is going in life, and he is asking you for money every few days. How do you cut the purse strings and teach him to be independent? Click here to find out...

Help for Neurotypical (non-Aspergers) Siblings

Caring for an Aspergers (high functioning autism) youngster takes a tremendous toll on the whole family, and neurotypical siblings are no exception. As moms and dads, our exhaustion, stress, and uncertainty about how to respond to the needs of other children can leave us feeling guilty and drain our reserves — and might tempt us to downplay or ignore the impact a youngster's disorder may have on his siblings. By being aware of what neurotypical (i.e., non-Aspergers) brothers and sisters are going through and taking a few steps to make things a little easier, moms and dads can address many issues before they unfold. Family routines and dynamics naturally change when a youngster has Aspergers, which can confuse and distress neurotypical siblings. In addition to fear and anxiety over the disorder, they often experience the feeling of loss of a "normal" family life, and loss of their identity within the family. It's normal for neurotypical siblings to: worry

Autism Spectrum Disorders and the Brain

"A lot of literature on autism says that the brain of a child on the spectrum is 'wired differently'. Can you elaborate of this difference?" Over the past few years, a number of studies have been published linking differences in brain structure and function to Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD). For example, researchers have noted that: At a certain point in post-natal development, ASD brains are larger Certain parts of the brain may function differently in ASD children Certain portions of the brain, such as the amygdala, may be enlarged in ASD brains “Minicolumns” in the brain may be formed differently and be more numerous in ASD brains Testosterone may be linked to ASD The entire brain may function differently in ASD children What all of these brain findings have in common is that they point to ASD as a disorder of the cortex. The cortex is the proverbial "gray matter" (i.e., the part of the brain which is largely responsible for higher brai

2011 Seminar on Aspergers (High-Functioning Autism): Transcript of Q & A Session

Question #1: Can you give us just a basic summary of Aspergers for those of us who are not familiar with the disorder? Generally, Aspergers is understood to involve problems with social skills and relationships, nonverbal communication difficulties, restricted, repetitive behaviors, narrow areas of interest, and adequate development of language skills and intelligence. Since 1944 when Hans Asperger first wrote of the symptoms he observed, professionals have included different groupings of the following symptoms in their definitions of the condition: • compulsive adherence to nonfunctional routines • delayed motor skills • lack of delay in speech or language comprehension skills • motor clumsiness • narrow interest • nonverbal communication problems • normal intellectual development • odd speech • preference for solitary activities • preoccupation with parts of objects or nonfunctional aspects of toys, tools, machines, etc. • problematic peer relationshi