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Autistischen Kind

ASD - Autism Spectrum Disorder

In order to cover the entire range of those affected, one speaks today of autism spectrum disorders (ASD), it describes an explanation that assumes that there is a smooth transition from non-autism to autism. Accordingly, autism would be seen as a trait that every human being exhibits to a greater or lesser degree. The term "autism" comes from the Greek and means "being related".


The "autism spectrum"   includes in particular early childhood autism, atypical autism and Asperger's syndrome. 

The first detailed description of a child that we would now call autistic was written by Jean Itard in 1799 -

"The Wild Boy of Aveyron".

The overarching symptoms of autism include:


  • Disorders of interpersonal relationships

  • Impaired communication and language

  • Limited interests and stereotyped behaviors

The symptoms of pervasive developmental disorders are characterized by a lack of social use of language skills, a lack of emotional response to verbal and non-verbal approaches by other people. Delayed language development and a tendency to form new words and echo-like repeating of words or sounds. The children do not reach questioning age, or do so very late, and then stereotypically ask the same questions to which they already know the answer. They do not use language communicatively, but in a mechanical way.


Restricted, repetitive and stereotypical patterns of behavior and interests such as rigidity and routine regarding everyday activities, resistance to change. The children can get into anxiety and panic states if something changes in the immediate environment (so-called fear of change).

You have difficulties adapting to new things and the desire to always organize everyday processes in the same way. They often focus on details and have trouble grasping a situation as a whole. They seek eye contact less often and have trouble recognizing the mood of their counterpart from their face. In many cases, those affected are rather clumsy in their motor skills. Over- or under-sensitivity to light, smells, sounds or touch is common. 

It is important that not everyone has all of these peculiarities in perception and that they are not equally pronounced. Some may only have problems with sounds, others with smells, still others with several types of perception at the same time.

The causes of autism spectrum disorders are still not fully understood. Genetic influences and biological processes before, during and after birth can impair brain development and trigger the autism spectrum disorder. It does not arise from poor upbringing or family conflicts. 

Therapy can take place in different areas of life, depending on the personality of the person concerned.

It is important for relatives to proceed with caution. Perception training, sensory integration, and constant repetition of social and cognitive learning processes can successfully counteract individual symptoms (regardless of age, but as early as possible). And -  with adequate support - very significant progress can be made.

The TOMATIS method has also shown its effectiveness in people with autism and related diseases (e.g. Asperger's syndrome). 

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