It's natural occasionally to feel disconnected from others—especially these days—or unable to communicate effectively with the people around you. But for some, problems with socialization are chronic and challenging. Asperger's syndrome is a neurodevelopmental disorder that makes it difficult for people to relate to or communicate with others. How do you know if you or a loved one may have Asperger's? Read on to find out more—and to ensure your health and the health of others, don't miss these Sure Signs You've Already Had COVID.
What Is Asperger's Syndrome?
Asperger's syndrome (sometimes called high-functioning autism) is a developmental disorder included under the umbrella of autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Before 2013, Asperger's was a separate diagnosis; today, conditions such as Asperger's, autistic disorder and pervasive developmental disorder are known as ASD. It is often, but not always, diagnosed in childhood, and symptoms continue throughout life.
How Asperger's Impacts A Person's Life
"People with ASD often have problems with social, emotional, and communication skills," says the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. "They might repeat certain behaviors and might not want change in their daily activities. Many people with ASD also have different ways of learning, paying attention, or reacting to things."
Read on for some of the sure signs of an ASD like Asperger's.
Signs You May Have Asperger's
According to the CDC, someone with Asperger's might
have trouble relating to others or not have an interest in other people
avoid eye contact and want to be alone
have trouble understanding other people's feelings or talking about their own feelings
seem unaware when people talk to them, but respond to other sounds
be interested in people, but not know how to talk or relate to them
repeat words or phrases, possibly in place of normal language
repeat actions constantly
have trouble adapting when a routine changes
have unusual reactions to the way things smell, taste, look, feel, or sound
How Is Asperger's Diagnosed?
According to the Cleveland Clinic, an ASD diagnosis should be made by professionals specifically trained for it. That can include a neurologist, therapist, psychologist, or psychiatrist. Pediatricians are trained to diagnose ASD in children. It might be necessary to see more than one specialist to obtain an accurate diagnosis.
Treatments for Asperger's
There is no cure for Asperger's, but symptoms of the condition can be improved through treatment.
According to the Cleveland Clinic, there are no drugs specifically prescribed for ASD. Some people with Asperger's are able to function well without medication. But some types of medications can help manage severe Asperger's symptoms or related conditions. They include antidepressants (SSRIs or selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors), anti-psychotics and drugs for attention-deficit disorder. And to get through this pandemic at your healthiest, don't miss these 35 Places You're Most Likely to Catch COVID.