If your child is on the autism spectrum, it can be difficult to tell if they're exhibiting any early signs. The symptoms of autism can vary widely from person to person, so there are no definitive indicators of when a child might be developing autism.
In this article, we will take a look at some of the most common early signs that may indicate that your child is on the spectrum.
Let's dive right in:
He or she doesn't respond to his or her name
Your child may not respond to his or her name. If your child doesn't respond to their name, it could be an early sign that they are on the spectrum. This is a very important sign since it indicates that something is off with their brain function and that they need help at home.
It's important to note that children with autism respond differently than other children do when they hear their names; if this happens often enough in your house, then you should talk about it with a professional who knows more about autism.
He or she has poor eye contact
Children with ASD have poor eye contact. This is because it's a social skill, and most children with ASD don't have the ability to develop this skill as well as their peers do. The lack of eye contact can make it hard for your child to interact with other people, which can be detrimental in school settings and at home. If you notice that your child has poor eye contact, talk to them about how they feel when they look at people; try asking them questions like “What do you think happens when we look each other in the eyes?” or "Does it make you uncomfortable to look me in the eyes?"
He or she doesn't point at objects to show interest or share excitement
As you learn to recognize the signs of autism, it’s also important to know that pointing is a sign of social communication. It can be delayed in children with autism and absent in some cases. When your child points at an object or person, he or she is showing interest in that object or person by communicating his or her needs through pointing.
Another sign of autistic spectrum disorder (ASD) is a lack of shared attention between two people who are talking. This normally happens when one person cannot follow along with what another person says because their mind wanders off.
He or she doesn't play "pretend" games (e.g. pretend to "feed" a doll).
Pretend play is a way for children to learn social skills, such as how to take turns and share.
Children with autism often have difficulty with this type of play because they're not able to understand the rules that other children follow in their pretend games. For example, if your child plays pretend with his friends at school or daycare, he may lose interest when one friend wants another one of his toys instead of sharing. This can make it difficult for them if they have trouble understanding when someone needs something from them—or why someone would need something from them at all!
He or she doesn't smile when you smile at him/her, or engage in other social back-and-forth behaviors
If your baby doesn't smile back when you smile at him/her, or engage in other social back-and-forth behaviors with you (like cooing, babbling, etc.), it could be a sign of autism. In fact, some experts believe that if a child doesn't show interest in others and their interactions with them—such as by laughing or making eye contact—it could mean he or she is on the spectrum.
He or she rarely shows interest in others by looking at them, following them around the room, etc.
One of the most common early signs that a child on the spectrum might have is difficulty with social interactions. If your child:
- Is less interested in other people than in objects
- Has trouble understanding the social world and can't read other people's emotions, such as anger or fear
- Doesn't make friends easily
Recognizing early signs can help, even though diagnosis requires professional expertise
As a parent, you may wonder whether your child has autism or if there is another reason for his or her behavior. You're not alone! Many parents are also hesitant to get their children diagnosed with autism because they don't want to admit that their child has a developmental disorder. However, it's important for parents to recognize the early signs of autism so that they can seek professional help as soon as possible—and if necessary, get medical care immediately.
What do you do as a parent if your child is displaying signs of autism?
The first step is to recognize the signs. If your child exhibits any of these behaviors, it's important for you to talk about them with a doctor or other professional who can help diagnose and treat the condition.
Because it's hard to know what will happen in life, we hope this article has helped give parents like you some peace of mind so that when their children start showing any type of behavior related to autism spectrum disorder (ASD), they'll have an idea what might be happening. We all want every child to reach his full potential and grow up happy and healthy!