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Autism - Symptoms

  • Symptoms of autism are usually seen during early childhood, and autism is diagnosed by the age of three.
  • The symptoms intensify in various degrees from one child to another.
  • The reaction to external factors like light, touch and smell can be normal, over-reaction or under-reaction. Normal touch may be experienced as very painful, normal smell may be very unpleasant to the child, and daily noises may be very disturbing too. On hearing loud noises – for instance, a vacuum cleaner – they may end up crying inconsolably.
  • They may appear indifferent to their surroundings.
  • They are happy to be alone.
  • They do not have much interest in toys, like other children.
  • They do not respond to others when an attempt is made to talk to them.
  • They are not able show or point out their interests to others.
  • Their activity levels fluctuate; they have a tendency to become hyperactive and, by contrast, inactive.
  • They do not like being cuddled or hugged.
  • Children with autism are usually not able to speak normally; because they cannot express themselves clearly, they tend to use gestures instead of words.
  • Some children develop abnormal speech, which is not recognised by others.
  • They tend to talk repetitively and use the same words over and over.
  • They are known to throw tantrums.
  • They may get too attached to certain objects.
  • They cannot maintain eye contact.
  • Some children do not fear apparent dangers.
  • As they are not able to respond to normal methods of teaching, they need special schools.

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