High functioning autism—also labeled as Asperger’s syndrome—is at one end of the spectrum of autism disorders, and it is marked by symptoms that are less severe than other forms of autism, often accompanied by average or above-average intelligence. While high functioning autism does tend to have a milder range of symptoms, it can still be a significant disruption in social and academic development . Therefore, parents should not ignore these classic characteristics of high functioning autism, which may not be noticeable until later in adolescence unlike the signs of more severe autism disorders.
Difficulty transitioning between activities
Children with high functioning autism tend to have great strength in certain academic areas with difficulty in others. This can create difficulties with low attention spans or difficulty transitioning from one lesson to another.
Social interaction may be difficult for children with high functioning autism , since children may have extreme emotional reactions, inappropriate outbursts, and high sensitivity to loud noises or multiple verbal commands. Discipline may be a challenge as well, since children tend to either shut down or have emotional breakdowns when they are reprimanded for negative behaviors.
Persistent gastrointestinal health issues
There are some physical symptoms often seen in people with high functioning autism. Food allergies and sensitivity, frequent constipation or diarrhea, and incontinence can be seen in high functioning individuals. Managing these conditions, food sensitivities in particular, may be integral to managing behavior for children and teens with autism.
Resistance to social activity
Because of challenges like difficulty understanding jokes and appropriate social behaviors, it may be hard for high functioning individuals to maintain friendships. As a result, children may begin to resist social interactions and take to more solitary activities.
If you have noticed these signs and symptoms in your child, contact The Behavior Exchange in Dallas to explore the best approach for therapy and educational programs to improve behaviors and boost academic success. You can reach us on our website or at (888) 716-8084 to schedule a consultation with our specialized, attentive staff .