Autism Spectrum Disorder

The PsychProfiler can be used by individuals, parents, and practitioners to screen for Autism Spectrum Disorder. The Child and Adolescent PsychProfiler (CAPP) allows for three separate respondents when screening – i.e., the child or adolescent, the parent, and the teacher. The Adult PsychProfiler (APP) allows for two separate respondents when screening – i.e., the adult and an observer (e.g., spouse, parent, etc).

What is Autism spectrum disorder (ASD)? 

Autism spectrum disorder is characterised by persistent impairment in reciprocal social communication and social interaction; and restricted, repetitive patterns of behaviour, interests, or activities. The impairments are pervasive and sustained and have been present from the early developmental stage. A diagnosis of ASD now encompasses several disorders that were previously diagnosed separately: autistic disorder, pervasive developmental disorder not otherwise specified (PDD-NOS), and Asperger syndrome. All conditions are now referred to as autism spectrum disorder.

What are the signs of Autism spectrum disorder?

The signs of autism spectrum disorder often begin showing in early childhood and usually continue into adolescence and adulthood. Physically, there is often nothing to differentiate those with ASD with other people, however, people with ASD often communicate, learn and behave differently to neurotypical people. Autism spectrum disorder is referred to as a spectrum because it is so diverse and can present very differently from person to person. Some people with ASD may display very advanced conversation skills, whereas others may be completely nonverbal. Some people with ASD require a lot of support throughout their daily lives, while others with high functioning autism live with little to no assistance. People with autism spectrum disorder tend to have difficulties when it comes to social interactions, expressing their emotions and communicating. They may also be averse to changes in routine, and will often show signs of repeating specific behaviours.

Autism in children

As autism spectrum disorder is so diverse, no two children with ASD are alike. There are, however,  some shared signs that may be noticeable from as early as the toddler years. In the early years, autism in children can manifest as difficult with the development of social and communication skills, such as maintaining eye contact or learning to talk. Children with autism often prefer to play alone and will exhibit repetitive behaviours, such as lining up toys. They may also display sensory responses differently to neurotypical children, through their reactions to the sensory information like music or loud noises. Autism spectrum disorder can often have a large impact on a child’s personal relationships, school and home life, which is why testing for autism is so important. Get started with the Psychprofiler here. 

Autism in adults

Usually, the early signs of autism spectrum disorder are diagnosed during childhood. Though sometimes, high functioning autism goes undiagnosed until well into adolescence or adulthood. While people with high functioning autism are considered to require low levels of support, adults with ASD may have trouble in reading social cues, holding conversations, maintaining eye contact and interpreting social nuances, such as body language, figures of speech and sarcasm. Other signs of autism include exhibiting repetitive behaviours, being fixed on routines, hypersensitivity to sensory information and honing in on one or two favourite topics. 

What is the PsychProfiler?

The PsychProfiler is an online psychological assessment that helps individuals, parents, and practitioners screen for 20 of the most common psychiatric, psychological and educational disorders in children, adolescents and adults. Screening for these disorders helps to identify a path forward with treatment to help individuals and their loved ones live their most fulfilling and rewarding lives. 

Learn more about the PsychProfiler here.