How does an autistic child communicate with others?
Speaking about the violation of contact with the outside world, we do not mean that the autistic child is completely isolated from his environment in terms of perception. The autist, of course, establishes a connection with the outside world (and this is the “loophole”, thanks to which we can help him overcome the developmental delay and establish feedback with others), but makes it accessible to him.
For example, he can play toys, but without the plot development of the game, without its symbolic construction – let’s say, he will drive the machine monotonously left and right. An autistic child will be in the sandbox with the children, but will not enter into direct contacts, will not continue their game, because he is not able to emotionally “get involved” in someone else’s symbolic order. Autists cannot emotionally “approach” another person, figuratively try on themselves his joy or physical pain. An autistic child hears and sees, but does not understand the meaning of emotions.
In a very peculiar form, emotional contact is established by an autistic child with those people whom he is used to from an early age. But it is based not on attachment, but on a daily habit, recognition. An autist will turn to someone who is familiar to him, because he knows that he performs certain functions in his life (gives water, washes, brushes his teeth, etc.). Such a person also has a positive effect on the level of anxiety, traditionally high in autistic children. It is for this reason that many parents of autistic children are jealous of their nanny, although there is nothing surprising in this: an autist perceives as a close person that satisfies his daily needs.
For this reason, the heightened sensitivity of autism does not decrease in relation to relatives and friends: neither the mother nor the nanny will be able to persuade the autistic child to wear clothes that are not suitable for him or to eat unpleasant food for him based on his authority or affinity. Often, an autistic child resists even a loving hug, which can also be associated with a sensitivity to smell or a violation of the specific personal space that the child feels around him.
All these signs of autism manifest themselves at a fairly early age, however, 3 types of development of childhood autism can be distinguished.
Types of autism in children
The criterion by which the development of autism can be conditionally divided into 3 different types is the time at which its characteristic signs first appear. Sometimes autism can be suspected already in the first year of a child’s life, when he is just learning to establish contacts with people closest to him. In this case, the final diagnosis can be made within 1.5-2 years from the moment of birth.
But more often it happens that until a certain age (2.5-3 years), development proceeds normally, and then abruptly stops. Parents are inclined to explain this suddenness by external reasons preceding inhibition: reaction to vaccination, stressful situation, etc. In fact, the development of autism was simply genetically “programmed” in this way.
A third, later, and less common type of childhood autism is also associated with this, when, at a conscious age of approximately 5 years, a regression to the previous stages of development occurs. That is, the child learned to talk, but at some point he stopped, talked with his peers and forged friendships – and suddenly, for no apparent reason, became self-absorbed. A child with this type of development of autism is honing normal functions in a staggeringly short time, and this will certainly disorient parents.
Childhood Autism Treatment Technique
No matter how autism develops at an early age, an effective technique for its treatment is based on two premises. The developmental delay in autism is genetically determined, and the child, being unable to establish emotional contact with others, is guided by the simplest reactions to satisfy his needs.
For example, fragmentary thinking tells him that in order to eat, he needs to “combine” two familiar objects – the hand of his mother and the door of the refrigerator, as he repeatedly observed earlier.
Based on these two prerequisites, an effective treatment of autism aims to simulate conditions in which the brain of an autistic child begins to develop and pathological reactions cease to be reinforced, thus stimulating the development of cognitive functions. After all, if loved ones follow the symptoms of autism, the child’s consciousness simply does not need to develop.
There is no need, for example, to develop speech when a mother, with one moo, determines what the child wants. For clarity, it should be noted that this is the pathology of development, and not the insidious consciousness of an autistic child.
Autism Treatment Prospects
Modern methods of working with autists allow you to develop the functions of the child to a completely normal state. But, alas, it is impossible to overcome the inner chasm that lies in the consciousness of the autistic between him and others.