Asperger syndrome is an autism spectrum disorder and is considered a high functioning form of Autism. Autism spectrum disorders are also known as pervasive developmental disorders and can affect social skills and communication. Asperger syndrome can also delay the development of motor skills and cause sensory problems. While there is no cure for Asperger syndrome, there are treatments to help teach the skills affected by Asperger to patients to help them cope with the disorder.
Research is currently being conducted to find the causes of Asperger syndrome and other effective treatment methods. The symptoms of Asperger syndrome are caused by delays in several areas of development such as social skills, communication skills, motor skills, and language skills. Patients with Asperger syndrome can become over-focused on a single topic or object and will want to know everything about the topic and will talk very little about anything else.
Their areas of interest may be extremely narrow and they will often rattle off facts about their topic of interest with no conclusion or connection to conversation (Asperger Syndrome-PubMed Health). Asperger patients also exhibit social awkwardness and have trouble forming relationships. Eye contact, use of facial expressions, and body language are impaired in patients and can inhibit regulation of social interaction. Patients may also lack emotional empathy and the ability to recognize social cues (OASIS @ MAAP – What Is Asperger Syndrome? . Speech may have a lack of rhythm, odd inflection, or a monotone pitch in patients with Asperger syndrome. They may also lack the control to match the volume of their voice to their surroundings (Asperger Syndrome Fact Sheet). Asperger syndrome patients may show delays in motor development and exhibit unusual physical behaviors such as repetitive arm flapping, twisting, or other whole body movements (Asperger Syndrome – PubMed Health). Asperger syndrome is very difficult to diagnose.
People with Asperger syndrome often function very well in everyday life, so the signs and symptoms exhibited are often just recognized as “quirks” or a way of just being different. If a child exhibits any symptoms of Asperger syndrome, it is extremely important to seek the help of a doctor and they will refer you to a mental health professional or a specialist for further evaluation. A “psychological exam” will be performed to compile a history of when the symptoms first apeared, the development of motor skills and language patterns, and other aspects of behavior and ersonality. The earlier an evaluation is conducted, the sooner treatments can be started to improve a child’s development with Asperger syndrome (Asperger Syndrome). Asperger syndrome has no cure, but with treatments and medications, many children with Asperger syndrome grow into well-developed, productive adults. The majority of diagnosed children benefit from specialized treatments that focus on social skills training and behavior management. Some of these treatments include communication and social skills training and cognitive behavioral therapy.
There are no medications that specifically treat Asperger syndrome, but there are some medications that can help improve symptoms such as anxiety, depression, and hyperactivity including Aripiprazole, Guanfacine, Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, Risperidone, Olanzapine, and Naltrexone (Staff, Mayo Clinic). Parent training is also helpful in continuing treatment at home and teaches parents techniques to be used at home to better their child’s development (Asperger Syndrome – PubMed Health). Research is currently being conducted to understand the causes of Asperger syndrome and to find more effective treatments.
A study is currently being conducted using functional magnetic resonance imaging to show how abnormalities in particular areas of the brain can cause the symptoms of Asperger syndrome and autism spectrum disorders. There is also a large-scale study comparing neuropsychological and psychiatric assessments of children with possible diagnoses of Asperger syndrome and high-functioning autism to those of their parents and sibling to try to identify any patterns of symptoms that link Asperger syndrome and high-functioning autism to any specific neuropsychological profiles.
A long-rang international study conducted by a collection of scientists from universities, academic centers, and institutions from around the world to collect and analyze DNA sample from children with Asperger syndrome and high-function autism, along with their families, to identify associated genes and how they interact. This study is better known as the Autism Genome Project and functions as a repository for genetic data so that researchers can try to find the genetic “building blocks” of Asperger syndrome an autism spectrum disorders (Asperger Syndrome Fact Sheet).
Asperger syndrome is a high-functioning form of autism and is considered an autism spectrum disorder. It delays the development of many areas such as communication and social skills. Even though there is no cure for Asperger syndrome, with the right treatments and medications, most children with a diagnosis of Asperger syndrome and their families learn to cope with the symptoms of this disorder. Many adults with Asperger syndrome can develop to be happy, well-functioning, and productive adults with successful mainstream jobs and lead fulfilling independent lives with the right kind of treatment plans and support available to them.
Works Cited “Asperger Syndrome – PubMed Health. ” Web. 16 Oct. 2011. . “Asperger Syndrome Fact Sheet. ” National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS). Web. 16 Oct. 2011. . “Asperger Syndrome. ” KidsHealth – the Web’s Most Visited Site about Children’s Health. Web. 16 Oct. 2011. . “OASIS @ MAAP – What Is Asperger Syndrome? ” OASIS @ MAAP – The Online Asperger Syndrome Information and Support Center. Web. 16 Oct. 2011. . Staff, Mayo Clinic. “Asperger’s Syndrome – MayoClinic. com. ” Mayo Clinic. Web. 16 Oct. 2011. .
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