First of sorry if I am posting in the wrong forum. I am mum to a 2.5 year old daughter just recently autism has been being spoken about by the health visitor and wanted some more advice about if that is what I am looking at.
I have done a lot of research myself and i know no one can diagnose my daughter but just and advice would be great.
The main cause for concern is the way she acts around other people at home around myself her dad and my two older daughters she is happy and plays and chats and acts mostly like i would expect her to act (a few exceptions but i will go more in to them in a little while) outside of the house she acts different around other people some are strangers some she has met a few times and some she sees regularly and has done since birth but the way she acts around them is the same. for example if we are in a shop and someone speaks to her she puts her head down will not look at them and if they touch her she will rub away the touch and if they still continue she will cry. In my daughters school playground she used to be happy going but now she has to be carried buries her head in my shoulder and asks to go back to the car. I take her to a lot of toddler groups and in these she has fun but only if it is just the two of us at an activity if another child comes over she will want to sit on my lap and stops playing straight away and sometimes acts scared it doesn't matter if this is an adult or another child. At the park if she is going on the slide she gets upset if another child goes up the steps or she will come away and wait for the child to finish before she goes on.
Her speech isn't great she says a lot of words and uses short sentences but a lot of what she says is not understandable to people who are not round her all the time. i understand 80% of what she says but her dad who doesn't live with us only understands maybe 30%.
She gets very upset over things and it takes her a long time 2-3 hours until she calms down this has been for example because her sister didn't kiss her goodbye or because she left her teddy in the car even after getting the teddy she still cried for a couple of hours after and during this time she kicks and screams and shouts and absolutely nothing i do can distract her.
She can get upset at small changes such as she always has to wear the same pyjamas and have the same blanket and if these change she will get upset. She also dislikes certain clothes and just refuses to wear them.
With play she does play imaginatively but she will also line toys up for example she has a wooden bridge and some animals she will walk the animals over the bridge one by one then line them all up at the other end.
with eye contact she gives me eye contact and her dad and sisters but no one else or just occasional glances and if i take a photo of her in nearly every photo she will not look at me but looks down or in to the distance.
She will respond to her name sometimes but other times just it is like she doesn't hear me she doesn't respond at all (her hearing has been checked and all fine).
She will sometimes mutter to herself especially in situations like if someone is talking to her or getting to close to her.
She is not potty trained and shows no interest in this at all she doesn't tell me when she needs changing and never tells me if she needs to go the toilet.
Her sleep is awful she wakes up at least every 2 hours and sometimes goes back to sleep quickly and other times it can take hours it is like she doesn't need much sleep as the next day she will still be her normal self and not tired in the day.
Sorry this is so long wanted to make sure i included everything. From this do you think it is something that needs looking in to more?
Thank you in advance
You're in the right forum.(I'm not, since I'm not a parent!)
I don't know if it's worth looking into more. It sounded like your main concern is just that she's shy, or more so than her older sisters. Some kids are just introverts. If sleep and language are a problem, then maybe. Would it be an idea to ask to see a speech and language therapist? They should be alert to signs of autism and refer on for an ADOS interview if they think it's appropriate, or anything similar.
Thank you for the reply. Yes i do wonder if she is just shy i myself am shy and also her older sister it is just some of the other things make me wonder. She is currently on the waiting list to see a speech and language therapist although i don't know how much they will be able to help as she will not speak to people she doesn't spend a lot of time with.
From what little I know, I think SLTs are prepared for language problems of all sorts, including mutism for psychological or personality reasons. Presumably the health visitor will pass her observations on to the SLT, but if you have additional thoughts, maybe you can talk to the department before the appointment. I think autism is an idea to be open to, although there could be other reasons for her moodiness. Just having a few autistic traits isn't a diagnosable condition. Best wishes for you & your family.
I understand that it is early days for you all, so I am just adding some links in the hope that you may find them useful.
You may like to read our general information about autism - http://www.autism.org.uk/about-autism/autism-and-asperger-syndrome-an-introduction/what-is-autism.aspx
If you were interested in finding out if your daughter is on the autism spectrum, they would need to have a formal diagnostic assessment. You may find it useful to have a look at the following link for further information about diagnosis and the benefits of getting one - http://www.autism.org.uk/about/diagnosis/children.aspx
If you are looking for a diagnosis for your daughter, it is very important that you see someone with experience of autism spectrum disorders. Details of diagnostic services can be found on our Autism Services Directory: http://www.autismdirectory.org.uk/services/autism-services-directory.aspx
You may also want to look at our section that provides advice for parents, relatives and carers of people with autism - http://www.autism.org.uk/living-with-autism/parents-relatives-and-carers.aspx
It might also be useful to pass on information about autism to health professionals when seeking a diagnosis. The following page includes information for a range of health professionals: - http://www.autism.org.uk/Working-with/Health.aspx
You may like to have a read of the National Autism Plan for Children to see what you are likely to expect and what you can ask during the assessment . Please scroll down to the bottom of the page and go to page 3 on summary report, page 11 for full report for the Essential Components for a complete multi agency assessment - http://www.autism.org.uk/about/diagnosis/children/national-plan-children.aspx
Hope this information is helpful,
I'm no expert, but from what you've written I just see shyness, language delay, and the fact that she is the baby of the family.
My middle daughter had language delay and the way the health visitor explained it to me at the time was that she didn't need to speak because we were skilfully interpreting her sounds and pointing, and accommodating all of her needs immediately, to avoid her sometimes explosive little tantrums. We put in place all of the tips she suggested to us and about 6-months later my daughter was speaking as if she'd always known how to but just hadn't wanted to do it before. I think speech therapy would be an excellent idea but I wouldn't necessarily see it as anything more at this stage.
My youngest daughter didn't have speech delay or (many) tantrums but she was a little diva about clothes and having things done / happen exactly as she wanted them! She wouldn't throw tantrums when they didn't, she'd simply rearrange things / people or point blank refuse to co-operate. Being the youngest she was used to being indulged and just expected the world outside the home to be equally on board with this. I suppose we did encourage it all a bit, or at least didn't discourage it enough, because she was / is the baby and we saw these things as cute or funny. She's 13 now, it's not quite so funny sometimes now : /
I didn't start potty train any of my daughters until they were 2.5 - 3 years.