A child with Asperger’s syndrome has normal intelligence and adequate language skills in the areas of vocabulary and grammar – but a lack of social skills, difficulty with relationships, poor coordination, poor concentration and a restricted range of interests.
Although children with Asperger’s syndrome may have normal language development, they may have difficulties understanding the subtleties used in conversation, such as irony and humor. They generally show below average nonverbal communication gestures, fail to develop peer relationships and find it hard to reciprocate emotionally in normal social interactions.
Asperger’s disorder generally tends to have a somewhat later onset than Autistic disorder and is more common in boys than in girls.
- Abnormal non-verbal communication, such as problems with eye contact, facial expressions, body postures or gestures
- Failure to develop peer relationships
- Lack of spontaneous seeking to share enjoyment, interests or achievements with other people (example, by a lack of showing, bringing or pointing out objects of interest to other people)
- Marked impaired expression of pleasure in other people’s happiness
- Inability to return social or emotional cues (such as feelings)
- Inflexibility about changes in specific routines or rituals
- Repetitive movements, such as finger flapping, twisting or whole body movements
- Preoccupation with restricted areas of interest (usually narrow or unusually intense). Examples include obsession with train schedules, stamps etc.
- Preoccupation with parts of whole objects
- Repetitive behaviors, including repetitive self-injurious behavior
- There is no general delay in language
- There is no delay in cognitive development, or in the development of age appropriate self-help skills or in curiosity of the environment.